5 Uses for Activated Charcoal

5 Uses for Activated Charcoal

If you’re not seeing all things black yet, the time has arrived.  Activated charcoal, a current health buzz on the market turns your food, drink and mouth black, but not without having lots of benefits. 

Activated charcoal is great for curing hangovers and detoxifying, charcoal acts via chelation, binding itself to toxins within your body and then working to pull them out and send them on the proper path of elimination. The result is faster elimination of alcohol and its byproducts after a few too many the night before, and a great overall cleanse of the body. 

Here’s 5 ways you can integrate activated charcoal into your day-to-day routine. Oh, and don’t worry, it doesn’t make your food taste like charcoal!

  1. Add it to your smoothies and smoothie bowls – Not only does it make your smoothie look black and bad ass, but consuming charcoal with food means it has a better vehicle to get to your digestive system where it can start all the work.  Once in your digestive system, it will begin binding to toxins within the small and large intestines and then send toxins along the appropriate elimination pathway.  Often the toxins simply accumulate in our body because there is not sufficient means of removal and charcoal is able to remedy this and ensure everything is properly removed.
  2. Stir it into your juice – Make a detoxifying, immunity boosting, hangover curing juice by juicing 1 lemon with a knob of ginger and then filling the glass the rest of the way with equal parts coconut water and plain water.  Once your glass is nearly full, stir in one teaspoon of activated charcoal.  The lemon acts as a great method of detoxification, along with charcoal, and is also alkalinizing to the body.  The ginger improves digestion and eases nausea, while the coconut water replenishes electrolytes and rehydrates you.  Consumed together this drink is sure to help you out!
  3. Make it into a mouthwash – This use is more for your dental health, but just like charcoal can bind to toxins in your body and remove them, it is very good at doing the same thing in your mouth.  Mix a teaspoon with some water or baking soda and water and swish it around in your mouth for 2-3 minutes.  Spit it out and you will notice that the charcoal will have stuck in areas of your mouth where there is toxin or bacterial build up.  Now go brush your teeth and scrub away all that unwanted bacteria!
  4. Use it in tea – When you are really hung-over, and can’t stomach any food, drinking a charcoal elixir may be just what you need to help you start recovery.  You can make a brew using Chaga mushrooms and star anise to give you an energy boost and an antioxidant fix, or simply make a cup of tea with your favourite tea bag, and then after you let it steep and remove the bag, stir in a teaspoon of charcoal.  Stir regularly while you are drinking, as the charcoal may separate, and you don’t want to miss all those healing benefits!
  5. Rub it on your skin – This at-home skin cleansing concoction is easy to make and yields big results.  Not only does it help cleanse your pores and remove toxins that are in your skin and drifting their way towards causing your next acne breakout, but it also hydrates and moisturizes at the same time.  Using a kitchen hand-mixer or stand mixer, whip up one cup of coconut oil until smooth.  Stop before it turns into liquid.  Beat in 3-4 tablespoons of activated charcoal and place the mixture in a container.  Store in a cool place and use as a facial mask, leaving it on for 10-15 minutes, or as a facial cleanser each time you are in the shower.  Just be sure to wash it off well so you don’t have any black left on your face!

By: Laura Peill – (Check out her blog Viand Nutrition & Facebook)  

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