In an interesting, to put it mildly, interview with Into The Gloss, “Divergent” actress Shailene Woodley raved about the health benefits of eating clay. Yep, you read that right: eating clay. Also known as geophagy, or the practice of consuming earthy, soil-like substances, Woodley touted that clay is one of the best things you can put in your body.”I first heard about the benefits of eating clay from a taxi driver,” she explains. “He was African and was saying that, where he’s from, the women eat clay when they’re pregnant. I’ve discovered that clay is great for you because your body doesn’t absorb it. And, this is crazy: It also helps clean heavy metals out of your body.”While it’s true that many cultures have a long history of eating dirt or clay—particularly, in pregnant women, including ones in the U.S.—and research shows that clay can help remove heavy metals from soil as well as from animals exposed to radiation, there really isn’t a good reason to eat clay in 2014, according to registered dietitian Janet Helm, author of the blog Nutrition Unplugged.“[Certain cultures] thought it provided essential minerals, like iron and calcium, but we don’t have a need to get nutrients from the soil anymore,” notes Helm. “That’s why there are prenatal vitamins for pregnant women. Plus, our liver and kidneys absorb toxins so there’s nothing we need to do to detox that our body doesn’t already do for us.”The main concern for pregnant women who consume clay is that there are a lot of impurities, such as lead, arsenic and other toxic chemicals that naturally occur in soil and may pose a health threat to both the mother and her unborn child. So why risk it? Eating clay could also lead to potential constipation problems and worst case scenario, if you don’t digest it fully and/or you eat copious amounts, that can lead to an intestinal blockage. The risks by far outweigh any benefits, according to Helm.“Just because a celebrity thinks it’s the next big thing doesn’t mean you should try it,” she says. Sounds like sound advice to us.