There has been a lot of buzz in the colloidal silver world recently regarding structured silver. Some say it’s the only truly effective form of silver supplement. Others are calling it nothing more than a marketing gimmick. We asked our Director of Science, Dr. Robert MacCuspie, to explain what structured silver really means.

First: A Little Science Lesson

It turns out that all water has structure. All water molecules are able to form what are called hydrogen bonds between water molecules. These very weak bonds can give a structure to the water. Hydrogen bonds form and break rapidly, allowing the water molecules to flow past each other and thus behave like a liquid. Additionally, when positively charged silver ions are dissolved in water, the water forms a sphere of hydration around the silver ion. So technically speaking, any water that contains any ions can be called structured water, and any time silver ions are dissolved in water it can be called a form of ‘structured silver’.

Marketing Angle Sure To Confuse

directional signs

Therefore by nature, all colloidal silvers and ionic silvers can be referred to as structured silver, but the structure does not increase efficacy* or safety*. These properties are still directly related to the size of the particle and the concentration. Therefore, “Structured Silver” is yet another marketing term to be used in the confusing colloidal silver category, much like the marketing term “True Colloidal Silver”.

You may have seen other colloidal silver products claim they have silver atoms bonded together to form some kind of structure, marketed as “Structured Silver”. Without either a Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) image to show the silver atoms are bound together into a metal particle, or some other type of chemical analysis data to demonstrate the nature of the chemical bonds holding the atoms together in the molecule, there is no scientific proof of any type of structure. You can use the comparison tool on our website to see for yourself what the TEM data looks like side by side.

TEM image comparing silver particle size

These images were all taken at 110,000x magnification. Black areas and spots in the images on the right represent large silver particles. By contrast, compare this to the much smaller particle size and fine, uniform dispersion of the Sovereign Silver® sample on the left.

Keep in mind that the smaller the particle size, the easier it is for the body to absorb and eliminate – and that silver can only be converted to bioactive forms at the surface of a particle, hence the smaller the size the better.

TEM image comparing particle size

What to Look for When Considering Colloidal Silver

Silver dietary supplements vary in form and concentration of silver, yet there are particular characteristics that point to the safety*, purity and effectiveness* of the product. With the Science of Silver as our guide, here are important things to look for.

1. Maximum Bio-Activity

Look for products that can demonstrate greater than 98% bioactivity in their products. Silver has to be positively charged, to be in the bioactive form that offers the body its immune support* properties.

2. Small and Consistent Particle Size

On the surface of silver particles are silver atoms available to convert to positively-charged silver ions. The smaller the particle size, the more surface area is available for this conversion to the bioactive form, which results in greater efficacy*. Bio-Active Silver HydrosolTM , like that found in Sovereign Silver, has an unprecedentedly consistent distribution of the smallest particles achievable.

Smaller particle size = more surface area = more conversion to bioactive silver = more efficacy*.

3. Purity

Bio-Active Silver Hydrosol has only two ingredients: pure water and pure silver, nothing else. Sovereign Silver uses only ≥99.999% pure silver, and routinely tests to corroborate the absence of hundreds of potential contaminants from their products.

4. Certified GMPs

Look for third party verification of the good manufacturing practices employed by the company making your product. Sovereign Silver is manufactured in an NSF/GMP certified facility. This means that we have third party verification of our manufacturing processes and procedures, following our highest standards and strictest protocols for quality and purity.

For more information to help you choose the right silver Click Here.


Dr. MacCuspie holds a Ph.D. in Nanotechnology and Materials Chemistry and has over 17 years of experience in Nanotechnology, including nearly 10 years specifically in silver nanotechnology. He has worked for several US National Labs including the US FDA, Air Force Research Laboratory, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), where he developed their silver nanoparticle reference materials and was an international leader in nanomaterial environmental health and safety (nanoEHS) research. He was the First Faculty and Director of Nanotechnology & Multifunctional Materials programs at Florida Polytechnic University, and served on their Board of Trustees. Dr. MacCuspie holds 1 US Patent , has written 2 book chapters and 42 peer-reviewed manuscripts which have been cited over 2,000 times with an h-index of 24.