Skip to content

July 14, 2018 Medical Geology

July 15, 2018
Greetings from the Bluff Park Back Porch, way up yonder on Shades Mountain (1,109′) in Alabama:
A brand new topic for me to jump into.  Enjoy. comments appreciated.

The right dosage differentiates a poison and a remedy.”[2

Medical geology is an emerging interdisciplinary scientific field studying the relationship between natural geological factors and their effects on human and animal health.[1] The Commission on Geological Sciences for Environmental Planning defines medical geology as, “The science dealing with the influence of ordinary environmental factors on the geographical distribution of health problems in man and animals.”[2]
Back in 1966 at U of A I wrote a paper on Medical Geology, before internet and search engines, so had to go to library.
At the time it sounded terribly exciting even up to the point of a career choice.
In its broadest sense, medical geology studies exposure to or deficiency of trace elements and minerals; inhalation of ambient and anthropogenic mineral dusts and volcanic emissions; transportation, modification and concentration of organic compounds; and exposure to radionuclides, microbes and pathogens.[3]
Examples of research in medical geology include:
Diseases include iodine deficiency, cardiovascular disease pending amounts of magnesium and calcium, natural radiation, fluoride, selenium, potassium, calcium, and phosphorous.
Not all elements and compounds are negative.   Some are essential for life, as in sodium chloride, halite or salt.
The five major minerals in the human body are calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and magnesium.
Just a few pictures before we, I dive head first into this dark hole.
Halite ( /ˈhælt/ or /ˈhlt/),[4] commonly known as rock salt, is a type of salt, the mineral (natural) form of sodium chloride (NaCl).
>  I had some wonderful crushed latie over the Fourth of July with BBQ and Ice Cream.
Large natural crystal of halite, showing cubic cleavage breaks
White Mountain 4 Qt. Manual Ice Cream Maker
MORTON<sup>®</sup> <br>ICE CREAM SALT 1
Image result for Homemade peach ice cream

Recipe: Easy Homemade Southern Peach Ice Cream

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish

Inactive/Prep time: 2 hours 30 minutes | Yield: About 2 quarts


  • 4 cups of chopped, fresh peaches (about 8 large)
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1 (12 ounce) can of evaporated milk
  • 1 (3.75 ounce) package of instant vanilla pudding
  • 1 (14 ounce) can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 4 cups of half and half
  • Electric ice cream freezer machine
  • 5 pound or larger bag of ice
  • Rock salt


Peel, pit and cut the peaches into chunks. Place into a bowl, sprinkle with the sugar, stir; allow to rest for about 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Hand mash, or place peaches and juice into a food processor and pulse about 3 to 4 times, until mostly pureed. Set aside.

Whisk together the evaporated milk and pudding mix until well blended. Add the peaches, sweetened condensed milk and half and half and whisk well. Pour mixture into the container of an ice cream freezer and process according to the directions for your freezer. Once the process is complete, transfer to a container and place into the freezer until firm.

Note: To peel peaches, bring a small pot of water to a rolling boil and using a slotted spoon, drop 2 to 3 peaches in the boiling water at a time, return to a boil and allow peaches to sit in the boiling water for about 30 seconds. Remove and peel off skin. When fresh peaches are not in season, substitute canned, drained or thawed frozen peaches. One pound of frozen or canned peaches is equal to about three medium peaches.


Requires Adobe Reader – download it free!

©Deep South Dish
Before I get diarrhea of the brain and fingers, I will quite this week.
Boy that peach ice cream sure WAS gooo.

July 7 , 2018, Weekly Geology Guess, Zeolites

July 7, 2018
Greetings from the Bluff Park Back Porch, way up yonder on Shades Mountain (1,109′) in Alabama:
Our final industrial mineral is zeolite.
Zeolites are microporous, aluminosilicate minerals commonly used as commercial adsorbents and catalysts.[1]
Natural zeolite with a United States one-cent coin (penny) for scale
A form of thomsonite (one of the rarest zeolites) from India
Rob Lavinsky,
Natrolite from Poland
Kluka assumed (based on copyright claims).
Synthetic zeolite
SeaterrorOwn work
Polished thomsonite Gemstone
Rob Lavinsky,
Thomsonites, one of the rarer zeolite minerals, have been collected as gemstones from a series of lava flows along Lake Superior in Minnesota and to a lesser degree in Michigan, U.S. Thomsonite nodules from these areas have eroded from basalt lava flows and are collected on beaches and by scuba divers in Lake Superior.
These thomsonite nodules have concentric rings in combinations of colors: black, white, orange, pink, purple, red, and many shades of green. Some nodules have copper inclusions and rarely will be found with copper “eyes”. When polished by a lapidary the thomsonites sometimes display a “cat’s eye” effect (chatoyancy).[25]
A rich combination specimen of 4 zeolite species from a classic, now hard-to-access zeolite locale in Canada. The radiating natrolite crystals are protected in a pocket with associated stilbite. The matrix around and above the pocket is lined with small, stable, pink-colored laumontite crystals (this is an unusual color). Heulandite, rare for the locale, is also present as a crystal cluster on the backside. Ex. Harold Urish Collection.
Rob Lavinsky,
Enjoy the adventure!

We will start with eatin’ rocks.



July 3, 2018 Daily Feed

July 3, 2018
Happy Fourth of July.  Enjoy your family and friends.  Remember those 4 legged ones that go berserk on the Fourth due to fireworks.
Bless those that cannot be with us.
Don’t use up all of your salt peter, charcoal, and strontium, copper, aluminum with your show.
Greetings and Welcome to the Daily Rock and Mineral Feed.  This will consist of a daily (well – not always) compilation of decent photos of interest.
The Rockhound Connection
and numerous quotes and images from my Facebook friends.


These are the images that appeal to my sensibilities or the lack thereof.


1.  Malaysia Iridescent Goethite.
No automatic alt text available.
2.  Crazy Lace Agate
No automatic alt text available.
3.  Help!  Lizard in Amber.
No automatic alt text available.
4.  Rockin Out

5.  Black Harlequin Opal “The Cathedral Window” from Lightning Ridge, Australia!
No automatic alt text available.
6.  Let Nature arrange manganese, carbon and oxygen together and sometimes it makes beautiful crystals of Rhodochrosite from Peru. Photo by Jeff Scovil.
No automatic alt text available.
7.  👆Check out the impressive spiral inclusion in this crystal-clear Aquamarine – a variety of Beryl – from Pakistan
No automatic alt text available.
8. “The Good Old Daize”
A look inside the Woodward #3 mine. This photo shows the miners riding the man car up the slope. Photo taken in 1921. Check out those open carbine lamps.
9.  Happy Solstice to the whole wide world.
Image may contain: text
10.  “It took a photographer 20 days to get the perfect photograph…” Source: Randle C. Conrad
Image may contain: cloud, sky, tree, outdoor, nature and water
Leave a comment
from → Daily Feed, Uncategorized

June 30, 2018, Weekly Geology Guess, Wollastonie

June 30, 2018
Greetings from the Bluff Park Back Porch, way up yonder on Shades Mountain (1,109′) in Alabama:
Another exciting(?) week with industrial minerals.  No sleeping please, it puts the instructor into a comatose stupor.
Wollastonite is a calcium inosilicate mineral (CaSiO3) that may contain small amounts of iron, magnesium, and manganese substituting for calcium. It is usually white.


Wollastonite is used primarily in ceramics, friction products (brakes and clutches), metalmaking, paint filler, and plastics.
White acicular crystals of wollastonite (field of view 8 mm) from the Central Bohemia Region, Czech Republic
Wollastonite skarn with diopside (green), andradite garnet (red) and vesuvianite (dark brown) from the Stanisław mine near Szklarska Poręba, Izerskie Mountains, Lower Silesia, Poland.
Prices for domestically produced acicular wollastonite, ex works, were $205 per ton for 200-mesh, $248 per ton for 325-mesh, and $275 per ton for 400-mesh. the price, ex works, for acicular, high-aspect-ratio wollastonite was $345 per ton.
Our final industrial mineral challenge will be Zeolites.
Enjoy the adventure!


June 22, 2018 Weekly Geology Guest, Vermiculite

June 22, 2018
Greetings from the Bluff Park Back Porch, way up yonder on Shades Mountain (1,109′) in Alabama:
Vermiculite is a hydrous phyllosilicate mineral. It undergoes significant expansion when heated. Exfoliation occurs when the mineral is heated sufficiently, and the effect is routinely produced in commercial furnaces.
Use in very numerous heat sensitive items.  High temperature brick, brake linings, insulation, soil conditioners, and etc.


Our next industrial mineral challenge will be Wollastonite.
Enjoy the adventure!


Request for weekly geology topics

June 20, 2018
Here are some of the recommendations for the latest geological witch hunt.
–    Right now, this one leads the pack.  Geologic Disasters and hazards. >>>> earthquakes, volcanoes.  Hawaii.  (tsunamis, land slides, sink holes, etc.)
–    Geologic Scenery.
*    Medical Minerals, such as, don’t lick your red realgar crystals.  Watch that halite and calcium carbonate, it too is in everything, even rated as food grade.
>    I will wander down this path after I finish industrial minerals in about 3 weeks.  Hope the medical minerals doesn’t turn into a thesis.
Red Realgar Crystals.
Realgar, α-As4S4, is an arsenic sulfide mineral, also known as “ruby sulphur” or “ruby of arsenic”.
Rob Lavinsky,
Halite, Sodium Chloride, Crystal
Clear Optical Calcite.
Image result for calcite images
Give me more meat.  R

June 16, 2018 Weekly Geology Guest, Talc

June 16, 2018
Greetings from the Bluff Park Back Porch, way up yonder on Shades Mountain (1,109′) in Alabama:
*****  Hey Folks, about to run out of Industrial Minerals.  I need fresh meat for new topics.  Continue with Rocks and Minerals?  Geologic Disasters?  Geologic Scenery?  Pick me a topic.

We will now continue down the Industrial Mineral dusty trail and continue with TALC or Soapstone.
Hardness = 1, the softest mineral, will scratch with finernail.
Talc or talcum is a clay mineral composed of hydrated magnesium silicate with the chemical formula H2Mg3(SiO3)4 or Mg3Si4O10(OH)2. In loose form, it is (in ratio with or without corn starch), one of the most widely used substances known as baby powder.
I use it daily.   I generally leave the diaper off?!

Talcum Powder

Talcum Power

Image result for Images of talc

Block of Talc

Public Domain
Talc is also used as food additive or in pharmaceutical products as a glidant
Talc is used in many industries, including paper making, plastic, paint and coatings, rubber, food, electric cable, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and ceramics.

Green Talc

Image result for Images of talc


Our next industrial mineral challenge will be VERMICULITE.
Enjoy the adventure!