Hidden Uses + Benefits of Activated Charcoal

By The Body Department January 18, 2018

I remember around 2016 activated charcoal became all the wellness-rage. I have to admit. It consumed me also. Everywhere you looked, “acti-char” as I liked to call it, was being included in everything. I, too, wanted to detox with the newly unearthed magical black substance. I used it with my toothpaste for its whitening benefits and scorged down fancy subscription-based activated charcoal detox drinks for digestive & purification benefits. Needless to say it was totally beneficial. And I could see how these reasons would drive people to be obsessed with the powder. Here are some hidden and not-so hidden benefits of activated charcoal.


A mix of purified and fine black carbon powder made from bone char, coconut shells, peat, petroleum coke, coal, olive pits or sawdust. It gets “activated” by being processing it at extremely high temperatures.


Since it’s pores carry net negative charges, it attracts heavy metals and other toxins. Its absorbent micro-surface traps and pulls out micro-metals and particles out of your system. Thus leading to its detoxification benefits which made the substance famous & trendy. 



When you’re feeling gassy, activated charcoal properties are known to aid digestion by absorbing those uncomfortable substances from indigestion, acid reflux and upset stomach.  The supplement can be very effective in soaking up the less harmful, but uncomfortable, acids and gases that accumulate in your gut to relieve you of discomfort. 


We’re not encouraging a hack to excessive drinking but this is a hack to get you back to feeling 100% after a wild night out. By taking 1 to 1.5 grams of activated charcoal after night of too many dranks can help prevent a hangover. But make sure you follow up with WATER

? to help the “acti-char” flush the alcohol out of your system. 



Regular shampoos remove surface hair follicle dirt, but activated charcoal will pull out even more. You can just empty a capsule or add a teaspoon of acti-char to your regular shampoo and cleanse as you normally would. The key is that activated charcoal isn’t going to leave the residue regular shampoos will, so your hair will feel lighter and have more volume. You’re also giving you scalp a thorough cleansing allowing the benefits from your deep conditioner to really set in. 


Activated charcoal helps to promote kidney function because it can reduce the number of waste products that the kidneys have to filter. Healthy kidneys are normally well equipped to filter your blood without any additional help. But patients suffering from chronic kidney disease however, generally have a harder time removing urea and other toxins from their body. Activated charcoal may have the ability to bind to urea and other toxins, helping your body eliminate them.


You can also use this mask over time to lighten your underarms. By combining activated charcoal, orange essential oil and gelatin into a paste you can create the perfect DIY masque for underarms or any part of the body that requires color-toning. Check this DIY video out and create your version!


Its very important if you are taking medications to wait a couple hours in-between medicine intake and activated charcoal supplement intake so that your medicine has enough time to be absorbed by your system. If you begin to experience adverse reactions like constipation, vomiting, stomach pain and diarrhea then put a pause on your acti-char supplement intake.

[Words by Christina Makoyawo / Photo 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]

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