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Activated Charcoal

Activated Charcoal

Thursday, January 18th 2007

As important as bandaids in your home (and travel) first aid kit

In 1813 French chemist M. Bertrand swallowed an otherwise lethal dose of arsenic mixed with activated charcoal and survived. In 1831 Professor Touery demonstrated the effectiveness of activated charcoal to his Academie Francaise medical colleagues by ingesting 10 times the lethal dose of strychnine followed by activated charcoal - he too survived. Activated charcoal has been used increasingly in hospitals around the world for poisoning ever since. (We do not recommend you try these experiments yourself).

Activated charcoal is now the treatment of choice world wide for most emergency care poisoning and drug overdose patients.

Activated charcoal is produced by super heating carbon in a high oxygen environment. This process increases carbon's adsorptive properties (the attraction and accumulation of gases, liquids, or solutes on its surface) up to 2000 times. This superb adsorptive quality is what makes activated charcoal so useful. Whilst activated charcoal does not bind all substances, it is superbly effective for adsorbing intestinal gas, toxins from food poisoning, most drugs and many poisonous substances, before they can reach the blood stream.

"One gram of activated charcoal has an adsorptive surface area equivalent to two tennis courts!"

Ongoing research has shown that administration of activated charcoal at hospital emergency care facilities rarely occurs within the recommended one hour post poisoning. Internationally, off site emergency medical service staff are now trained to administer activated charcoal before arrival at the hospital, however, delays are still common.

At home or when travelling to foreign countries, having Radiance Activated Charcoal on hand is very useful in cases of food poisoning, "delhi belly" and excessive intestinal gas - for family and pets.

Be prepared for the unthinkable, keep a well stocked first aid kit on hand in the house and car, take a first aid course so you know what to do in a medical emergency and always seek immediate medical advice when needed, especially when a toxic substance has been ingested. Activated charcoal is not recommended for long term use as the high absorbency may reduce the absorption of medications, vitamins and minerals.

Its worth adding Radiance Activated Charcoal to your shopping list while still fresh in your mind.

Reproduced unabridged from the January - March 2007 issue of Health and Herbal News, with the kind permission of Health and Herbs International Ltd.

Footnote from Ideal Health:

The following supplements are all useful for Digestive Problems:

Aloe Vera
Acid Soothe Capsules
Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar
Broad Spectrum Enzyme
Colostrum Capsules
Dandelion Root
DigestEzyme (Super Papaya)
DigestAid (HCL with Pepsin)
Gastro Relief
Ginger Root
Inner Health Plus
Travel Bug
Chewable Papaya Mint
Slippery Elm Bark

Related health information can be found here:

Ensure healthy gut function with probiotic supplementation
Food Poisoning
FOS to assist with candida, diarrhoea, constipation or other bowel problems
Looking for a natural energy booster with the added cleansing power of chlorophyll?
The Good Health Diet
Ulcers - Stomach
Water, the elixir of life

Related articles can be found here:

Calming with Chamomile
Ease stomach discomfort with Slippery Elm
Enzymes: The weakest link in your digestive system
Indigestion: Could be too little stomach acid
Repair gastrointestinal damage with Colostrum
The Benefits of Primadophilus Reuteri

If you need help or advice, you are welcome to email our naturopathic team with your health question.

Disclaimer: The health information presented here has been written for the New Zealand health consumer. It is of a general nature and is only intended to provide a summary of the subjects covered. The information is not intended to be comprehensive or to provide medical advice to you. While all care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, no responsibility or liability is accepted, and no person should act in reliance on any statement contained in the information provided. All health ailments should be treated by a qualified health professional.


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