Parents shouldn’t panic if they see their children swallowing soil when playing in the yard. It is found that soil eating might have benefits to stomach.
Since eating soil is common in several cultures, the magazine called The Quarterly Review of Biology made a survey on more than 480 stories about soil eating told by doctors, explorers and missionaries. Experts in this survey have come to a conclusion. They’ve found out that the reason for soil eating in many cultures is that soil becomes a shield in stomach against parasites and toxins.
Dr. Sera Young, the leader of this survey team pointed out that the first written story of man’s eating soil was recorded by Hipocrat 2 thousand years ago. They said, in the light of data they collected, that people needed to eat soil when they were exposed to certain ecological conditions requiring protection.
It is also stated that people might crave for soil when their bodies lack metals such as iron, calsium or zinc, so you should of course take your child to a doctor if you see your child eating or craving for soil.
(image from deviantart)