Since ancient times, humankind has valued silver for its anti-microbial and health giving properties. As far back as 4000 BC, the wealthy stored their food and liquids in silver vessels to keep them fresh. They also preferred to eat from silver platters using silver utensils, and drink from silver goblets, ensuring a constant, trace amount of silver in their blood. Chinese emperors and their courts ate with silver chopsticks. These people would remain healthy while the people who couldn’t afford silverware were often suffering from various diseases. During the Middle Ages when the bubonic plague devastated Europe, mothers knew that putting a silver spoon in an infant’s mouth could maintain health. The expression, "born with a silver spoon in his/her mouth," refers to an exceptionally healthy baby. In early nineteenth century America, silver baby pacifiers were commonly used. American settlers used to put silver dollars in their milk to delay spoilage. Silver leaf was used to combat infections in wounds during World War I. In Ayurvedic medicine, silver is used to rejuvenate the body and support liver health.
Long before pharmaceutical antibiotics, silver preparations were used in hospitals, and up until the 1930’s, Colloidal Silver was the only antibiotic available. In 1884 the practice of placing a silver solution in all newborn babies’ eyes had begun in order to prevent blindness caused by a secondary infection. This practice continues to be required by law in the US and other countries. By the early 1900’s, silver solutions in the colloidal form rapidly gained recognition as one of the best agents to maintain health. Colloidal Silver was now the preferred form of silver supplementation. By 1940 there were approximately four dozen different silver compounds on the market. However, the cost of producing high quality Colloidal Silver was very expensive compared to today, and silver is not patentable. These two factors contributed to a decline in the use of silver when cheaper, patentable antibiotics such as sulfa drugs and penicillin were discovered in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Colloidal Silver began receiving attention again in the 1970’s, when it became obvious that antibiotic overuse was causing a health crisis due to germs becoming resistant to pharmaceuticals.
Nowadays, silver is experiencing a resurgence in popularity. It is being used in water filtration systems, lining municipal water storage tanks, and embedded into athletic clothing and paints to prevent microbial growth. Bandages and wound dressings are now often laced with silver. Silver-based creams are found in most burn wards and have saved lives. Colloidal Silver is affordable and once again is becoming known as an effective and safe mineral supplement. It is classified as a dietary supplement and may very well prove to be one of the most important products for maintaining optimal health.