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Fact of the Day
Many different cultures around the world have dirt as a staple in their diet. There is really no reason why it should seem odd being as many animals naturally eat dirt in the wild. Sometimes things like acorns are too indigestible for straight human consumption. A likely solution for a Native American tribe would be to use clay to counter the tannic acid almost completely [source]. Natives in South America figured out how to eat some type of potato that induces sickness and vomiting by consuming it with clay [source]. Geophagy is also common in Zambia and Zimbabwe. Pregnant women have been known to crave dirt and the nutrients it possesses. In untainted parts of the world like Africa the soil is actually very beneficial for a growing fetus.
Pica (or the craving of unusual substances for food like ashes, clay, etc.) is the medical term for the natural urge to eat dirt.
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