Joined: May 2002
|Quote (stevestory @ April 15 2018,08:33)|
|Inspired by some poor relatives who fall for every form of snake oil Alex Jones and company peddle, I had a thought about eating clay. |
Back when I was in school and would come across the word Pica, it was always defined as something like "The compulsion to eat things that aren't food, i.e. clay." Clay was always the example. While eating clay is probably generally pointless, and probably only very helpful if you've ingested some strong poison, clays do contain several minerals, and organisms can adapt to crave things they need but don't understand, so is it possible that craving clay can in some limited circumstances stem from a mineral deficiency and thus be a rational response?
It is technically called "geophagy," or "plastophagy." It is common world wide. The popular over the counter nostrum "Kaopectate" was originally the clay kaolin, and pectin. Later the clay attapulgite, AKA plagorskyite was used instead of kaolin. In Yucatec Maya attapulgite is called "Sak Lu'um," and is commonly eaten to settle upset stomach, and diarrhea.
"Science is the horse that pulls the cart of philosophy."
L. Susskind, 2004 "SMOLIN VS. SUSSKIND: THE ANTHROPIC PRINCIPLE"