How’s life?? I hope you all had a lovely week. We have a long weekend here in Lagos so I’m looking forward to that!
So, activated charcoal! According to this article I read:
“Activated charcoal is considered to be the single most effective agent available. It is used after a person swallows or absorbs almost any toxic drug or chemical.
- Activated charcoal is estimated to reduce absorption of poisonous substances nearly to 60%.
- It works by binding (adsorbing) chemicals, thus reducing their toxicity (poisonous nature), through the entire length of the stomach and small and large intestines (GI tract).
- Activated charcoal itself is a fine, black powder that is odorless, tasteless, and nontoxic.
- Activated charcoal is often given after the stomach is pumped (gastric lavage). Gastric lavage is only effective immediately after swallowing a toxic substance (within about one-half hour) and does not have effects that reach beyond the stomach as activated charcoal does.”
I actually love this stuff. I first heard about it when I watched Hey Fran Hey’s YouTube video a while back. As soon as I saw the video, I was intrigued. I had never even heard about it or seen it before but I knew I had to try it. I did loads of research on it and found that there are so many uses for it e.g. it is used for water filters. If you google it, you’ll obviously see so many ways it can be used but I’m only gonna tell you about the ways I’ve used it!
To whiten your teeth
I was a bit skeptical at first guys. Really. But it actually works! Since it draws out impurities and toxins, kinda makes sense that it would do the same for any impurities causing tooth discolouration. All I do is add a little bit of the charcoal on top of my toothpaste and brush as normal. Activated charcoal is so effective as a teeth whitener that some companies are properly jumping on the bandwagon and are creating activated charcoal toothpaste. Do not be afraid – your teeth will not turn black. Once you rinse your mouth, all the black goes away. I haven’t done this in a while but 1-2 times a week is a good place to start.
To reduce bloating
I actually swear by this one. If you haven’t figured it out already on here or on my Twitter page, I like to eat. Food gives me an outrageous level of joy lol. Also, I’m a human. Therefore, I get bloated from time to time. Anyone who deals with bloating knows how uncomfortable and, sometimes painful, it can be. Well, activated charcoal helps with that. I just put half a teaspoon into a large glass of water and drink it. The results are fairly instant. NOTE: please be careful with this if you are on any sort of medication (e.g. birth control/contraceptive pill, antibiotics, asthma inhalers etc etc). Activated charcoal can often flush the body. This can lead to absorption of your medicine or can even flush it out. It is recommended to leave at least 2-3 hours between taking your medicine and ingesting activated charcoal. But if you rely on prescription meds everyday, I would strongly suggest you avoid drinking this stuff. Don’t go getting preggers because you didn’t want the bloating. Tread carefully!
As a face and hair mask
As I keep saying, this stuff draws out toxins and impurities. Therefore, it makes a great clarifying mask for your face and hair (and scalp!). My favourite way to use this is when I’m doing a mask with bentonite clay. I usually mix a little bentonite clay with some apple cider vinegar or water and apply it to my face. When I’m using the activated charcoal, I add a little bit to this mask and apply it to my face for 10-20 minutes. My skin feels clean, refreshed and renewed afterwards. Be sure to moisturise your skin afterwards as it can be a tad drying. You can also use this same exact mask to clarify your hair and bring back some curl definition. However, normally with my hair, I just add a little bit of the activated charcoal powder to my shampoo and I can definitely tell the difference, especially on my scalp.
As I said, there are loads of uses for activated charcoal but these are the only ones I’ve personally tried. One tip to keep in mind is that when you’re mixing up your charcoal, avoid using metal utensils. The charcoal will draw out the impurities from the metal and they will seep into your mask. Not good.
Obviously, don’t just go to your barbecue and grab the charcoal from there. No. Please don’t lol. I use the Coal-Conut Activated Charcoal (it’s food grade and organic) which I purchased on Amazon. There are lots of brands out there so it’s just about doing a little research. It also has an insanely long shelf life so you don’t have to worry about buying more every 5 minutes. I personally have the powder form but you can also get it in pill form from many health shops, such as Whole Foods and Holland & Barrett!
Give it a go and let me know what you think!