We Tried It: Shailene Woodley’s Drinkable Clay

05/13/2014 at 01:17 PM ET

Shailene Woodley's Drinkable Clay
Inset: Splash News Online

WHAT IS IT: A safe-to-consume, powdered clay mixed with water

WHO TRIED IT: Catherine Kast, PEOPLE writer/reporter

WHY SHE DID IT: Shailene Woodley drinks it, so it must make you look and feel amazing, right?

I am no stranger to drinking things that don’t seem drinkable (chlorophyll smoothie, anyone?), so when I was asked if I could try consuming clay, one of the many holistic detox and healing regimens of Shailene Woodley, I was game.

Last month, Woodley told David Letterman, “Clay binds to other materials in your body and helps your body excrete those materials that aren’t necessarily the best for you.” On a beauty blog this year, The Fault in Our Stars actress also said that clay “also helps clean heavy metals out of your body.” I’m not entirely aware how much heavy metal I have inside me, or what harm it’s doing, but I figure that if I’m not getting my water from natural springs or taking my makeup off with sea buckthorn like Woodley, there must be more than I think.

Also, Woodley’s not alone: The healing method of taking clay internally and externally has been utilized for thousands of years, and devotees say that the clay is alkaline- and acid-reducing, making it beneficial for those suffering from digestive ailments like acid reflux. And this study from Arizona State University touts bentonite clay’s ability to fight harmful bacteria like E. coli and Salmonella.

THE PROCESS: So, I set out on a search to find ingestible clay. (The stuff you made mugs out of in art class back in elementary school just won’t fly. Also, remember that before experimenting with a new dietary regimen, you should talk to your doctor.) After a brief online search and a few phone calls — including one to Woodley’s supplier, Mountain Rose Herbs in Colorado — I found Redmond, a California clay which is labeled as an “all natural dietary supplement.” It costs around $11 for a 10 oz. tub, and you can get it at Walmart. Plus, the company’s site provides easy how-to videos and client testimonials. Sold.

The videos taught me how to take the clay from powder form to a drinkable substance. They suggest mixing a little more than a teaspoon of clay into a big glass of water. The water and clay don’t combine on contact, so you need to stir quickly for a full minute if you want a smooth sip. As you stir, you’ll be able to carefully break up the chunks against the side of your glass or pitcher, which is really satisfying and not gross at all. It’s also suggested to use non-reactive containers and spoons when mixing your clay — I kept my clay in a glass pitcher and used a 16-oz. glass water bottle for transport.

Once the clay water is combined to your liking, you can go ahead and drink it. It really doesn’t taste bad. Honestly. If you let it linger in your mouth before swallowing, it does taste a little bit chalky (think more like baking soda than dirt), but it’s not at all unpleasant. After the full glass I felt satisfied, and there was no aftertaste.

I could actually hear the clay glugging along through my stomach, and that wasn’t too horrible either. It was probably battling with the cupcake I’d eaten just minutes before (it’s also suggested to wait a while after eating or taking supplements before drinking clay water).

THE VERDICT: For the past five days, I’ve drank a glass of clay water midway through breakfast and lunch. I noticed that after drinking the clay water I wasn’t as ravenous at subsequent meals, and perhaps the idea that I was doing something detoxing for my body made me choose healthier options.

Woodley has also said that a friend who started the clay kick noticed her ahem, excrements, started smelling like metal. That’s not a side effect I’ve noticed in just five days of use, but if I get entirely enamored with the earthly substance and that does start to happen, I’ll report back.

Share this story:

Your reaction:

Add A Comment

PEOPLE.com reserves the right to remove comments at their discretion.

Showing 14 comments

Kimberly on

Redmond Clay is a Utah company, not California, and Walmart doesn’t carry it but you can find it at most Whole Foods Markets or direct from Redmond at http://www.redmondtrading.com

Emily on

Walmart does carry it online if not in the store.

http://mobile.walmart.com/ip/Redmond-Trading-Company-Clay-10-oz/25072335

Nea on

I have been drinking the Clay since 1975 and have written a booklet called “We Eat Clay & Wear it, too” detailing the benefits we have seen. It is an amazing product that has blessed our family countless times.

Charity on

Drinking a glass of anything, including water, halfway through a meal will cause you to be fuller and consume less. That’s just logical.

Alexa on

Ay yi yi…”I have drunk” or “I’ve drunk”, NOT “I’ve drank”.

Jim on

Yuck!

Lorena on

Just Sayin' on

if it’s been used for “thousands of years” why are we just hearing about this now? BS

SAON on

I don’t know about clay, but a glass of wine a days seems to work for me!

um on

@Just Sayin’
No YOU just now heard about it. There’s a lot of people who know the healthy benefits of have clay in your diet.

Barry on

Anyone wanting to detox the lead, mercury, cadmium or any other heavy metals from their body should look at using the ingestable medical grade mineral called Zeolite as it does a much better job then any plant or clay based products due to its ability to grab the heavy metal into its cage like structure and safely carry it all the way out from the body without releasing anything back into the body to be reabsorbed to make the person feel sick as plant and clay detox products do. For more information do a search for the single word zeolite.

Sparkle on

Drink bentonite clay. It’s the ONLY cure for acne!!!

wellness on

I just could not go away your website before suggesting that
I extremely enjoyed the standard information an individual supply
in your guests? Is going to be again often
in order to investigate cross-check new posts

roe3lin1 on

Mountain Rose Herbs is out of Eugene, Oregon and not Colorado. I understand how it would be easy to confuse the two as they are both amazing places to live. However, correct your research error please.

advertisement

From Our Partners

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 497 other followers

Sign up for our daily newsletter and other special offers.
    Choose your newsletters
Thank you for signing up! Your request may take up to one week to be processed.
    see all newsletters