As the leaves fall and the temperature drops, we witness the transformation of seasons and brace ourselves for the onset of the dreaded cold and flu season. Amidst the array of remedies and preventive measures, one has garnered attention for its natural healing properties: activated charcoal. This powerful substance could be your ally in combating the seasonal stomach bug. Here’s how:
What is Activated Charcoal?
Activated charcoal is not the residue from your barbecue grill but a refined form of carbon processed to have many small pores. These pores increase the surface area of the charcoal, making it incredibly absorbent and capable of binding to a wide range of organic and inorganic compounds.
How Does Activated Charcoal Work?
The science behind activated charcoal is fascinating. Its porous texture has a negative electric charge, which means it naturally attracts positively charged molecules, such as toxins and gases. When ingested, activated charcoal can trap harmful pathogens that cause the stomach flu, preventing them from being absorbed into the body.
Get Better Faster with Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal’s super-absorbent quality can help heal if you’ve fallen victim to the Activated charcoal is renowned for its excellent adsorbent properties, which can be particularly beneficial if you’ve been afflicted with the stomach bug—a term colloquially used to describe various viral or bacterial infections that upset the gastrointestinal system. This natural substance operates through a process known as adsorption (not to be confused with absorption). Adsorption is a surface-based process where substances adhere to the outside of the charcoal rather than being soaked into it.
How it works…
When activated charcoal enters the digestive tract, its porous surface acts almost like a magnet. The charcoal’s negative electric charge attracts positively charged unwanted substances, such as the toxins and pathogens responsible for causing the stomach bug. These harmful agents include bacteria like E. coli and the viruses that cause gastroenteritis. Once bound to the charcoal, these pathogens and toxins are trapped in its vast network of pores.
By intercepting these unwelcome agents, activated charcoal helps to prevent them from spreading and proliferating in the gut. This interception can alleviate the common symptoms associated with the stomach bug, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. Moreover, as the charcoal adsorbs these contaminants, they are effectively contained and subsequently expelled from the body through the feces. This process can potentially reduce the symptoms’ duration and severity as the body may heal faster due to the reduced load of pathogens and toxins.
Timing of doses
However, it’s essential to understand that the efficacy of activated charcoal varies depending on the nature and amount of the substance causing distress and the timing of administration. For it to work most effectively, it should ideally be taken at the onset of symptoms. This timing ensures that the charcoal can adsorb the pathogens and toxins before they adhere to the stomach lining or get absorbed into the bloodstream.
stomach bug. It assists in adsorbing the toxins and pathogens in the gut that are causing discomfort and illness, potentially reducing the duration and severity of symptoms.
Preventive Measures with Activated Charcoal
Prevention is better than cure, and activated charcoal can also play a role here. By taking activated charcoal at the first sign of stomach upset or when exposed to potential stomach bug sources, you may be able to help prevent the full-blown onset of the illness. Researchers believe that charcoal can assist in removing the offending pathogens before they can make you sick.
Practical Tips for Using Activated Charcoal
- Timing: Activated charcoal can interfere with the absorption of medications and nutrients, so it’s best taken at least 2 hours before or after other drugs.
- Hydration: Stay well-hydrated while using activated charcoal to help flush out toxins and prevent constipation.
- Quality Matters: Choose activated charcoal that is made from coconut shells or other natural sources.
In conclusion, activated charcoal could be a valuable addition to your health toolkit for healing and preventing the seasonal stomach bug. As with any remedy, respect the balance of nature and science, and let them work in harmony to safeguard your health during flu season and beyond.
*Always consult a healthcare professional before starting activated charcoal or any new supplements into your routine.
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- Jason Silberman; Michael A. Galuska; Alan Taylor.Activated Charcoal.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK482294/#:~:text=Activated%20charcoal%20adsorbs%20ingested%20toxins,liquid%20phase%20via%20direct%20contact
- Medically reviewed by Cynthia Taylor Chavoustie, MPAS, PA-C — By Jessica Caporuscio, PharmD — Updated on February 10, 2023.Activated charcoal for a stomach bug: What to know.https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/activated-charcoal-for-a-stomach-bug