Turkish Journal of Earth Sciences




Thermal muds have been used in many spas for the treatment of different diseases as well as to clean and beautify the skin and in different forms such as mud baths, masks, and cataplasms. Mineralogical and chemical compositions and the possible toxicity of the peloids were investigated and compared with some limits to determine whether they have any health benefits and potential applications for pelotherapeutic treatments. The studied peloid samples were collected from 19 spas in different parts of Turkey and they were classified as neutral to slightly alkaline, with a high electrical conductivity value that had a high chlorine content and was regarded as highly conductive. The temperature of the peloids was between 23.2 and 61.0 °C. The mineralogical composition mainly comprised smectite and illite, partially quartz and feldspar, some carbonate (calcite and dolomite), and other minerals. The most abundant clay mineral was Ca-montmorillonite. The major and trace element contents of some of the peloids were similar to each other, while the contents of some toxic elements showed a clear variation. Toxic element contents, e.g., As, Cd, Hg, Pb, and Sb, of the peloids were higher or lower than the commercial herbalist clay, pharmaceutical clay, natural clay, average clay, and Canadian Natural Health Products Guide. The toxicity of some hazardous elements was compared, especially that of the pharmaceutical clay, and evaluated together with other parameters. Toxic elements were higher than in the pharmaceutical clay in most of the peloids.

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