Dear Kid,

You may recall that in researching donuts I came across the concept of edible diamonds. I had never heard of edible diamonds. So I (of course) turned to My Friend the Internet.

Who has never heard of them either. Or at least is not telling.

So if anyone knows anything about edible diamonds, I’m listening.

While I was searching, I found out a lot about edible gold. Being the kind of Mom I am, I decided to share.

The more pure the gold, the better for you, mostly because the less pure the more likely you are to have ick mixed in. So go for 22K to 24K gold. And choose high quality alloys (like silver which it turns out is also edible) rather than copper (which is not good for your insides).

Gold leaf (but not the edible kind). DearKidLoveMom.comThe thing about eating gold (or silver) is that “edible” in this case means “won’t poison you.” Like kale. Unlike kale, gold and silver will pass right through your system without bothering to leave anything (healthful or otherwise) behind. Also unlike kale, you won’t gag on the taste.

People have long been fascinated by gold, so there are many stories about it. Like Midas and Goldilocks.

In the 15th century, gold was used medicinally. This was pointless to everyone except the people who made a profit selling and dispensing the gold.

In the 16th century, extremely rich Italians (generally those with “Duke”, “Earl”, or other forms of Your Exaltedness in front of their names) had their risotto decorated with edible goal. No clue why as it seems to me the gold would just blend in and risotto is a rich enough dish as is.

The Elizabethans added gold dust to fruits (grapes, pomegranates, oranges, dates, figs, etc.) to make their tables more elegant and opulent. Clearly, they couldn’t taste much because dates and figs are perfect plain.

The Japanese have a long history of adding gold to food and sake. The Japanese have a long history of treating food like art. But at least they didn’t bother putting gold on dates and figs.

So what have we learned? Gold is pretty. Small amounts are often used in food, candy, and beverages to bling those babies up a bit. Since gold (and silver) are, um, just passing through, there is no dietary benefit. Nor is there any harm as long as the metal is high quality. And there is no point trying to recover the gold you just ate, as the amount is far too small to make it worth the salvage process.

Love, Mom