Activated charcoal is an all-natural product that absorbs toxins and impurities from water and air. However, activated charcoal is more than just what you have after a campfire. This special food-grade charcoal has been “activated”, meaning that the carbon has been oxidized. It has many uses in your daily life and keeps both your environment and body clean and healthy.
1. Purifying Air and Water
One of the most common uses for activated charcoal is in air and water filters. The activated carbon absorbs both foul odors and harmful volatile organic compounds as gas molecules. This leaves both air and water smelling fresh and purified. However, an activated carbon filter can’t eliminate very tiny particles like dust, pollen, or mold spores from the air. If these particulates are a problem for you, use a HEPA filter along with charcoal.
When filtering water, charcoal can remove chlorine, herbicides, pesticides, nitrates, phosphates, microplastics, and pharmaceutical drugs. It will also leave healthy minerals intact so that you can benefit from them. Companies, like Rikumo, have activated charcoal sticks for water purification.
However, while it can remove a lot of harmful materials, you do need to remember that activated carbon will not remove viruses, bacteria, or radon. If you suspect your water is contaminated with bacteria or viruses, boil it, or use a special filter. If your home has radon, you’ll need to add a radon filter.
2. Activated Charcoal for Health
Charcoal has been used for decades in emergency rooms to treat poisoning. It can also be used daily to absorb excess gas from the digestive tract. A few capsules of this amazing substance can also ease a hangover and even help to lower high cholesterol and help with kidney disease.
But, don’t overdo charcoal capsules; taking too much can cause constipation or interfere with the effectiveness of prescription medications.
3. Charcoal for Beauty
Charcoal has found its way into everything from facial masks to toothpaste. A charcoal facial mask is especially good for oily skin, as it will absorb excess oil. It can also help to reduce acne and enlarged pores. Charcoal toothpaste not only removes toxins and odors from the mouth but also whitens the teeth.
4. Treatment for Bug Bites
Charcoal can absorb venom from a bug bite. A simple home remedy mixes powdered charcoal with coconut oil and aloe vera to make a salve. Apply this to a bug bite to absorb venom and encourage the skin to heal. Of course, a serious bite, such as from a brown recluse or a black widow spider will need medical attention. The same is true if you have an allergy to bee stings.
5. Pest Control for Plants
Add a layer of charcoal to the bottom of your potted plants to keep them healthy. This helps prevent mold and pests. Because it is so absorptive, it can also help prevent root rot from overwatering. You can also add it to your garden soil, and it can reduce nasty odors in a compost heap.
Activated charcoal comes in many different forms for many different purposes, and it’s not hard to find. You can find charcoal products in beauty stores, health stores, convenience stores, and online. These are just six uses for this amazing, natural substance. You’re sure to find even more, once you start using it.
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