When you think about charcoal, do you visualise backyard barbecues? If so, you’re probably wondering how charcoal can influence your health in a positive manner, isn’t it associated with cancer risk? Well, not exactly — the key word here is ‘activated’ charcoal. It’s not the same as the charcoal you find in a fire pit.
What Is Activated Charcoal, How Does It Differ?
The use of activated charcoal has been used throughout history, acting as a powerful poison antidote. In fact, it’s been said that activated charcoal was used for medicinal purposes as early as 1500 BC. Although used throughout history as an antidote, it’s now commonly used as a natural detoxifier, as well as a natural teeth whitening agent.
This form of charcoal is simply activated carbon — it’s heated so that it expands. The end result is a surface area that is more porous, which allows the charcoal to chemically bind and absorb atoms and toxins. In fact, this incredible health and beauty remedy can absorb up to two-hundred times its own weight — that’s a lot of impurities.
How Can You Benefit From Activated Charcoal?
Before we focus on the internal detoxifying properties of activated charcoal, let’s examine some of the other key benefits which it provides. The first, is a naturally whiter smile. When applying activated charcoal to your teeth, it removes surface stains and plaques, while balancing the overall pH within your mouth.
Another key benefit is improved skin complexion. Many individuals are now making a simple activated charcoal mask out of this fine black powder, aloe vera, lemon juice, honey, or whatever else they’d like to throw into the mix. When suffering from an acne breakout, for instance, this is generally due to inflammation, as well as toxins on the skin.
Not only do these toxins influence acne, but wrinkles and fine lines as well. When applied to the skin, it absorbs the toxins and oils that are sitting within your pores. It’s also great in a first aid kit, reducing the associated irritation and burn from bug bites. Speaking of first-aid, activated charcoal has saved numerous lives in emergency situations.
When consuming a toxin or fatal drug, for instance, activated charcoal can actually absorb and eliminate the substance more rapidly. Some classic examples include, pesticides, mercury, or high levels of morphine. When suffering from food poisoning, it can absorb various strains of toxins and bacteria within the stomach and gut as well.
There have been a number of severe cases reported, including a woman who consumed puffer fish sashimi, a dish that’s forbidden in many areas throughout Asia — due to the harmful toxin tetrodotoxin. Her limbs and mouth went numb and she became very weak. After taking activated charcoal, her symptoms subsided within 24 hours.
While taking activated charcoal internally, you essentially cleanse your digestive tract. Within our modern society, this is important, as we are exposed to a wide range of toxins and chemicals within the air we breath, the foods we eat, and the water we drink. When you consume a dose of activated charcoal, it’s not absorbed into the bloodstream.
As it absorbs unwanted chemicals, metals, toxins, and pharmaceuticals, it passes through the stomach and intestines, forcing these substances be be expelled. It is important to note that since activated charcoal is so effective at absorbing other compounds, it sound be taken two hours before or after any medication/vitamins.
If this is something you’re personally interested in, but suffer from a specific health condition, it’s best to speak with your physician or nutritionist before taking advantage of this natural remedy. One thing is for certain, this black powder belongs in any medical or emergency kit — you never know when you may need to utilise its beneficial properties.