Activated charcoal aka Activated Carbon is a fine black powder which is odorless. It has an ability to absorb toxic substances. It is absorbent in nature and thus has a potential to be an effective therapy, for Eg, using activated charcoal for food poisoning and for stomach bug can be a successful remedy. But there is still a need for a lot of research to be done on this.
What is Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is derived by super heating the naturally occurring carbon rich substances like saw dust, coconut shells, wood etc. This activated carbon is packaged in form of tablets and powder.
How does Activated Charcoal Work
The activated charcoal particles are negatively charged and thus they have a tendency to attract substances with positively charged molecules. Most of the pollutants like toxic chemicals, molds, pollen etc. possess positively charged ions.
This can be put in a simpler way as ” Activated charcoal attracts the toxins and prevents them from getting absorbed in the body”
How Does Activated Charcoal Work For Food Poisoning
Activated charcoal is used in some cases of food poisoning and drug overdose. According to a study ” Activated Charcoal must be administered promptly”. In order for it to work it is essential for the Activated carbon to come in contact with the toxic substance concerned.
If activated charcoal is given timely it will reduce the bio-availabily of the toxic substance or drugs, thus preventing them from entering into the blood stream.
Taking Activated charcoal for food poisoning is effective only in absorbing the toxins that are still available in the stomach, toxins that are already absorbed by the GI tract will not bind to the activated charcoal. The activated carbon will absorb the positively charged ions that are still available in the stomach, which also includes certain vitamins and minerals too.
Should You Pop a Charcoal Pill when You Have Stomach bug
If you go by the home remedy and old school remedies way, yes you can take charcoal pill if you have nauseating stomach bug. But the best road to take is seeking professional guidance.
Stomach bug may cause nausea, vomiting , abdominal cramps and even a low grade fever. Activated charcoal will bind the toxins and as it cannot be digested it will take everything out through the digestive tract. Activated charcoal tablet is easily available in the market, even activated charcoal powder can be taken. Mixing Activated charcoal powder in apple juice makes it easy to consume for kids. Adults can mix it water . It should be taken sip by sip.
Should I Take Activated Charcoal For Food Poisoning As A Home Remedy
The answer to this question is an absolute No. Before administering activated carbon in any form, weighing up the potential risks and benefits is to be performed essentially. This can only be done by a professional. The dosage and repetitions are also determined by the professional depending upon the poison/drugs in questions.
Moreover a medical personnel will also determine the efficacy of activated charcoal pertaining to the toxin/ drugs which are to be eliminated.
Does Activated Charcoal Works on Every Toxic Substance
Activated charcoal will bind the substances that have a positively charged ion. It will not absorb iron, petroleum products. heavy metal etc. This makes it very clear that Activated charcoal can work effectively on some events of food poisoning and may not work at all in some.
This is why in an event of emergencies like food poisoning administration of activated charcoal in any form should be done in an emergency room performed by medical personnel. It has to be preceded by detailed analysis of efficacy and risk factors.
Medication and Activated Charcoal
In general Activated charcoal can interfere with the absorption of the medication, thus reducing the effectiveness of the drug. If you are taking activated charcoal keep atleast 1 hour gap between the charcoal pill and your other medication.
Other Uses of Activated Charcoal
Suggested Read: 6 Best Uses of Activated Charcoal for Your Skin
Activated charcoal has taken the beauty and skincare industry by storm. It came as something very intriguing and promising at the same time, given its ability to attract toxins.
Its is also used extensively in water purification. A wide range of water purifier’s filters are now laced with a layer of activated charcoal.
Disclaimer: This article is for information purpose only. Activated charcoal for food poisoning should be taken under medical supervision only.
Where Can You Buy Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is available in form of powder, capsule and tablet. All these forms are available very easily online. You can search online for activated charcoal and you will get numerous options to buy from. You can also visit your local chemist to buy it from there.