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Activated charcoal tablets and other uses

In recent times different products have become famous that make use of activated charcoal for different types of purposes, in some cases activated charcoal is used for supposedly slimming and even for facial care that could probably be addressed with more appropriate solutions. In this article we are going to review what activated charcoal pills can do for our health.

One of the products that became more famous thanks to social networks were activated charcoal tablets . Many young people mention that they take them to get rid of the famous hangover, others argue that their use has helped them to lose weight, but do these revolutionary activated charcoal pills really work?

What is activated carbon?

First things first, it is essential that we explain what activated charcoal is and what it is used for, so that you can draw your own conclusions as to whether an activated charcoal pill can be miraculous.

Activated carbon is a porous element that is dedicated to trapping mainly organic compounds that are present in gases or liquids. It is so effective that it is the most widely used purifier by humans.

This charcoal can be made from different types of wood such as peat, tree wood or coconut shells.

Activated charcoal is an effective product in cases of acute intoxication.

Activated charcoal does have medicinal functions that are 100% proven, in hospitals and medical areas it is one of the most used substances as a treatment against acute intoxicationcases.Its function in this process is to prevent toxic chemicals from being absorbed into the gastrointestinal tract or bloodstream, even if the toxicant is already circulating in the blood, activated charcoal can dialyze in the intestine for purify the blood.

You can read more about activated charcoal for use in poisoning here: Activated charcoal for poisoning treatment

How effective is activated charcoal in the body?

The Comprehensive Natural Medicines Database ranks the efficacy of obviously natural medicines and states that based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Probably Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Possibly Ineffective, Probably Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Make a Determination.

He found that activated charcoal is effective against poisoning because he says it is useful for trapping drugs and other types of organic chemicals that cause intoxication.

It should be clear that the use of this product should be under the supervision of a health expert. There has always been interest from various industries to make use of activated carbon in their fields, but the reality is that there is no scientific basis to validate its function in these fields.

Is it safe to take activated charcoal pills?

There is no study that specifically talks about activated charcoal pills, but there are studies that tell us how good it is to ingest it or put it on our skin.

  • To be ingested orally:

    It is said that it is safe to be consumed in the short term does not present a risk, in the long term may present some risk by eliminating beneficial nutrients for the body, but it is also true that does not represent a significant benefit and may even produce as side effects constipation and darkening of feces.

  • Apply to the skin:

    Also in this area it is said that it does not represent any serious risk, but what is the sense of using it if its benefits are minimal and there are better products to fulfill these functions.woman with activated caebon mask

Can you detoxify your body thanks to activated charcoal capsules or tablets?

Many health enthusiasts add activated charcoal pills to their detox diet by adding them in juices or shakes as if it were a common protein and this does not really have a strong detox effect.

Many medical professionals warn against ingesting activated charcoal. While it can eliminate some toxins from your body, it can also eliminate healthy substances (vitamins, proteins…). As in the skin, activated charcoal cannot distinguish between good and bad toxins in the body. Although on some occasions it may be recommended by a physician, this should not be for a prolonged period of time. Do not consume activated charcoal within two hours after taking a medication.

If a toxic substance was consumed and entered the body, it is best to see a doctor to assess and administer activated charcoal, but when they are mild , the body has its own system to filter and detoxify the kidneys and liver.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has no regulations on activated charcoal capsules or tablets, so many of the dosages on supplement bottles are only suggestions. Your health care provider can give you a better idea of what the dosage might be for a particular case and can give you a suggested intake for activated charcoal. Do not take activated charcoal without consulting your healthcare provider.

activated carbon tablets

Do activated charcoal tablets help relieve gas or inflammation?

On many occasions we have observed that activated charcoal tablets are advertised as a product of natural origin to relieve gas and indigestion, but its effectiveness has not been fully proven, it could be that you have another serious condition and need a medical evaluation.

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine’s scientific evidence-based effectiveness scale, there is no data demonstrating the effectiveness of these pills on gastrointestinal issues.

A study conducted by The American Journal of Gastroenterology showed counterproductive results, in some cases these pills contain sorbitol which is associated with side reactions such as nausea and diarrhea.

What happens with an overdose with activated charcoal?

There is really no need to worry if too much activated charcoal was ingested on one occasion, there is no fatal risk from ingesting too much activated charcoal. However, you may seek medical attention if you think you have taken an overdose of activated charcoal. Overdose could present as an allergic reaction or excessive constipation due to the formation of a slowly circulating bolus.


After all these arguments we do not believe that you still want to consume capsules or pills of activated charcoal because as you could read this type of products have few benefits when consumed.

What happens most with the consumption of this type of productsis that it encourages brands to consumers by making their products more visually appealing, but the reality is that beyond do not cause serious negative consequences but only work as a placebo effect for which we pay more than usual.

Related articles:

Activated carbon for cosmetic products

What is activated carbon used for?


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