Humans come in contact with the element boron daily. Boron is a widespread mineral throughout nature and is found in natural substances and hundreds of everyday products, including the water we drink, the soil we touch and the food we eat.
Boron and the Environment
From the cotton in your clothes, to the vegetables on your plate, to the grape juice in your cup – all plants need Boron to grow. Boron controls flowering, pollen production, germination and seed and fruit development. It also aids the transmission of sugars from older leaves to new growth areas and root systems. Most fertilizers must contain small amounts of Boron. Without Boron, it would be impossible to grow many crops, especially in regions where natural boron levels are low.
Boron and your Diet
Everyday you routinely absorb small amounts of Boron from your diet, particularly if you eat a healthy diet that includes fruit and vegetables. Studies show that we consume about one to three milligrams of boron per day through a combination of foods and drinking water. Boron is nutritionally important to maintain optimal human health. Most of us probably ingest a healthy amount of Boron each day as a result of our normal fruit and vegetable intake. Our bodies handle Boron by using what is required for daily health and efficiently removing the rest.
Boron and the Home
You may be amazed to discover the wide range of products that contain Boron in your own home. Boron can be found in roofing materials, wallboard, fiberglass and cellulose insulation. Boron helps protect us from mold, rot, fungi, insects and fire when used as a treatment for construction materials such as wood, plastic, bricks, pipes and wires.
In the kitchen, you’ll find Boron in the ceramic tiles on the floors and in the porcelain enamel used to protect your sink, refrigerators, pots and pans. Boron is also in Pyrex® cookware, crystal and even in dishwasher detergent. In our bathroom, Boron is in soaps, cold creams, face lotions, makeup, shaving cream, contact lens solutions, hair straighteners, eye drops and denture cleaners.
The cotton in sheets, bed spreads and clothes contain Boron. Synthetic fibers require boron during processing. Boron is also used in clothes detergents, laundry boosters and bleaches. We also rely on boron to clean our carpets. In the garage, Boron can be found in antifreeze, motor oil, brake fluid and power steering fluid.
Boron is used in pest control products to control termites, fleas, flies, beetles, ants, cockroaches and silverfish. The active ingredient in TAP® Pest Control Insulation is a specially blended form of Boron which has low toxicity and is safe for humans and pets while controlling self-grooming insects such as ants, booklice, cockroaches, crickets, darkling beetles, earwigs, millipedes, silverfish, sow bugs, termites (including Formosan termites). Its properties and low toxicity are the main reason we chose to use this mineral to make our innovative and environmentally responsible insulation product for the pest control industry.
The items listed here include only a small portion of the many and varied uses of boron. It would take a library to discuss the multitude of uses of Boron. Boron is used in science, medicine, telecommunications, astronomy, space travel, microelectronics, pharmaceuticals, communication satellites, and more.
The truth is we would not live without Boron. It exists all around us and everyday we touch this very important element – even if we are not aware of it.