Imagine the lush forests of 75 million years ago when vegetation cycled through the rhythm of life, death and decay, yielding mineral-rich soil settling into the earth. Imagine that process continuing for millions of years.
Surprisingly, a product of that process, humic acid, may offer hope to those at risk for serious viral infections and even heavy metal toxicity, long after the soil settled into the earth. A part of the soil is called the humate layer, a particularly rich part of the soil; it contains humic acid which has been used for generations in Chinese, Mexican and Indian folk medicine. It is the part of the soil that helps bring nutrients from the ground up into living plants. Humic acids are brown-black polymeric acids of plant origin that are practically everywhere on the Earth's surface. They are a very important contributor to the health of soil.
In modern times humic acids were first studied in the late 1700's. They were extracted from peat bogs. Early research Sprengel concluded that humic acids were sugar based, however later research challenged that claim and it became generally excepted that these acids are of plant aromatics origin such as lignin. There is still the ongoing question on whether or not it should be labled as a fatty acid.
By the 1950s the debates had ceased for awhile. The final determination agreed upon at this time was that lignins were changed in the soil by microorganisms to create a complex mixture of substances called humic substances.
In the early 1980s the International Humic Substances Society (IHSS) was created. The purpose of this organization was to standardize humic acid research.
In 1985 another debate began, similar to the earlier debates. This time the lignin origin of humic acid was challenged based on the results of chemical and NMR studies by one group, while another still supported the lignin concept. Today the debate still rages and most scientists began to concede that humic substances were a mixture of aliphatic and aromatic structures, having both a lignin and polysaccharide origin.
Lignin is a chemical compound that is an integral part of the cell walls of some cells.
Lignin macromolecules are mostly made of phenylpropanoid units linked to each other through different kinds of bonds. Lignin is thought to act as a kind of glue in the plant cell walls and give plants very effective protection against parasite attack. Suggested use: Take one or two tablets twice daily before or with meals.