Charcoal is a substance made from coal, wood or any other substance that may undergo combustion. Activated charcoal is obtained when charcoal is combined with a gas or an activating agent under certain conditions to expand its surface area. Activated charcoal is popular due to its various medical benefits. It is a potent natural treatment that traps toxins and chemicals in the body allowing for a clean system. While activated charcoal can be made from any kind of charcoal, it is advisable to use activated charcoal made from coconut shells and other natural sources for medical purposes. The natural substance activated charcoal is more effective and can help in a number of medical conditions.
The most prominent use of activated charcoal is in the treatment of poison and drug overdose. Charcoal can be found in many bodybuilding related products to increase general wellbeing. The charcoal is an effective detoxification substance hence its prominence in this sector. Many emergency trauma centres around the world use activated charcoal to restore patients with overdose issues. Further, the substance is also used for reducing bloating, treat bile flow problems during pregnancy, reducing cholesterol and even preventing hangovers. The use of activated charcoal is supported by research and medical practitioners worldwide.
The Main Uses Of Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is a good agent for teeth whitening. It restores teeth that have been stained by coffee, wine or mineral water. It works by changing the pH balance in the mouth and hence helping prevent bad breath, cavities and gum disease. It whitens teeth by adsorbing plaque and microscopic particles that stain the teeth. The teeth whitening process is gradual and procedural, however, after a few days, anyone can attain white teeth.
Alleviates Gas & Bloating
There are foods that always cause gas bloating to some people when consumed. The best way of dealing with such scenario is by using activated charcoal. one should take 500mg of activated charcoal one hour before consuming this kind of foods. Follow it up with a glass of water immediately to ensure that the substance gets into the system. This is a tested process that has been proven to work by the American Journal of Gastrology.
Some of the foods that are prominent to causing grass problems include, french beans, cabbage and soft drinks such as soda. Taking a few milligrams before the consumption of these foods will work to your benefit.
Treats Poisoning and Drug Overdose
This is one of the main uses of Activated charcoal. The substance works by the process of absorption and adsorption. While it does not directly adsorb alcohol, it works by adsorbing other substances that increase toxification in the body. Alcohol is never consumed in pure form, it is usually combined with other substances that are easily cleaned by the activated charcoal.
A different study done by Preston university has shown that activated charcoal actually reduces the alcohol concentration in the body by a significant amount. First aid guidelines recommend that an individual that has overdosed on alcohol to a state of unconsciousness, should be given activated charcoal.
Any other type of poisoning that does not necessarily include alcohol can successfully be removed from the system by activated charcoal except for cyanide, lithium and iron tablets. If someone has consumed poisoned food or had an overdose of various drugs, the body system can easily be restored by taking a prescribed dose of activated charcoal.
Most people have got no idea that mold could actually be found in their bodies. Truth is that mold can be brought about by an increase of toxic substances in the blood system. The growth of mold will affect the kidney and the liver and may cause depression or kidney disease. The powerful adsorption properties of activated charcoal can be used in cleansing the mold and completely getting it out of the system.
Side Effects Of Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal can be useful for numerous complications, however, it may also lead to some complications. You should avoid taking activated charcoal without a proper prescription from a medical doctor. Some of the side effects may include.
This is entirely not a side effect but an indication that the substance is at work. Some people may produce black stool due to the flushing out of toxic substances while others will not experience that.
-The tongue is also likely to get black for some time due to the color of the substance.
– Vomiting and Diarrhea- Activated charcoal may cause vomiting and diarrhea for some people. This especially happens for people who take the substance alongside some types of drugs. If you are going to use activated charcoal alongside any drug, make sure your doctor knows.
Constipation- There have been reported cases of constipation by people who used activated charcoal.Although not common, some people experience constipation when they use activated carbon in reasonable amounts.
Precaution When Using Activated Charcoal
-Do not use activated charcoal with drugs used for constipation such as Sorbitol or Magnesium. This may lead to electrolyte imbalance and other complications.
– Use of activated charcoal may also affect the absorption of various drugs including Acetaminophen, Digoxin, Theophylline and Tricyclic antidepressants. Do not take activated charcoal if you are under any of these drugs.
-Activated charcoal also prevents absorption of various nutrients. This is the reason why it should be taken in reasonable amounts and under the supervision of a doctor. There are plenty of activated charcoal substances administered but they are administered as supplements and not medications in some cases.
Activated charcoal is a natural substance that is not naturally produced by the human body. It has many benefits to the human body and is key in cleaning the blood system. The use of activated charcoal is encouraged since it has no severe side effects. However, anyone who has a medical condition or is using certain medication should do extensive medical consultation before using activated charcoal.
The external uses of activated charcoal such as teeth whitening can be undertaken as long as you know the procedure. In case of poisoning, activated charcoal is a good remedy and should be administered immediately. However, it should be noted that activated charcoal anti-poison properties do not work in cases of cyanide, lithium and iron tablet poisoning.