10 Surprising Ways That Major Commodities Are Used

dont reuse commodities

Photo: US Funds

Everyone knows that we burn oil for energy, we wrap leftovers with aluminium foil, and we wear gold in jewellery.But commodities have many dimensions and their uses vary greatly.

The folks at U.S. Global Investors put together this slideshow to illustrate some of the unexpected uses of commodities.

Thanks to U.S. Global Investors for allowing us to feature this presentation.

aluminium is in antacids

aluminium has been used in antacid tablets such as Maalox and Equate, as aluminium and magnesium work together to lower the acid in the stomach and relieve heartburn symptoms.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, Heartburn.com

Gold is blended with tea for medicinal purposes

Did you know that combining gold and tea can cure cancer? Researchers found that when gold nanoparticles were mixed with a certain compound found in tea, the nanoparticles effectively destroyed aggressive forms of prostate cancer.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, GoldKings.com, Geology.com, Phys.org

Oil is in bottles

Without crude oil, we wouldn't have water bottles, baby diapers and ink. While 88 per cent of crude oil is used and processed as fuel, the other 12 per cent is converted into an assortment of other materials, but mainly plastics.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, RoadandTravel.com

Corn is in makeup

Starches from corn provide the velvety feel that is soft and smooth to the touch in lots of beauty products. The corn-on-the-cob that Americans dip in butter and sprinkle with salt is found in lotions, baby powders, makeup and lip balms.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, Ingredion.com, Agron.IAState.edu

Copper is in antibacterial found in water and air distribution systems

Did you know that copper is naturally antibacterial? This important quality inhibits the spread of bacteria in water and air distribution systems that are made from it. So when you see brass doorknobs, handrails and fingerplates in schools, hospital and other public places, know that your risk of bacterial transfer has just been naturally minimized.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, Eurocopper.org

Nickel is in margarine

Can't believe your margarine contains nickel? Because vegetable oils and margarines contain high proportions of polysaturated and monounsaturated fats, they are liquid at room temperature, making them nearly impossible to spread on bread or toast. Adding a nickel catalyst 'hardens' these oils by hydrogenating them.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, ChemGuide.co.uk

Wheat is in stamps

The starch found in wheat makes it suitable to be used as an adhesive. Wheat starch is what holds the bottom of paper grocery sacks together--it's also the adhesive found on postage stamps.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, KSWheat.com

Platinum is in cancer drugs

This precious metal has the ability, in certain chemical forms, to inhibit the division of living cells. Since discovering this property in 1962, a wide range of cancers has been treated with platinum-based drugs, including satraplatin, which will soon be used in the treatment of prostate cancer.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, Platinum.Matthey.com

Palladium is in water filters

Palladium helps purify groundwater by removing the hydrocarbons that are used as solvents and degreasers and used in the production of paints and adhesives. With the addition of hydrogen gas, palladium is used as a catalyst to promote the chemical conversion of contaminants into something more benign.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, StillWaterPalladium.com

Natural gas is in fertilizers

Did you know that natural gas played an important role in the doubling of agricultural yields between 1950 and 1990? When you apply high pressure and intense heat to air and natural gas over an iron oxide catalyst, you'll get ammonia, essential for nitrogen fertilizers.

Source: U.S. Global Investors, Wired.com

Gold is a popular commodity...

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