Sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum) is most known for its
culinary uses. It’s highly nutritious with an abundance of vitamin A (as
carotenoids), vitamin K, and vitamin C. It’s also rich in magnesium, iron,
potassium, and calcium. The fragrant herb Basil is best known as one of the
most versatile herbs to use in Mediterranean and Eastern cooking.
½ cup of
fresh chopped basil (or about eight tablespoons) has roughly:
0 fat, protein, sugar or fiber
56 milligrams vitamin A (24 percent)
88 milligrams vitamin K (108 percent)
0.24 milligrams manganese (12 percent)
4 milligrams vitamin C (8 percent)
Health Benefits of Basil Leaf
Adaptogen: helps the body adapt to stress and to
normalize the harmful effects of stressors on bodily processes.
Antibacterial: The basil essential oil was active
against every strain of E-coli it was tested with. It was also shown to have
anti-microbial properties that were found to fight mold, yeast, and bacteria.
Anticancer: Clinical studies published in Nutrition
and Cancer also show that basil contains phytochemicals, which can help
naturally prevent cancer, including chemical-induced skin, liver, oral and lung
cancers. Basil is able to increase antioxidant activity, positively alter gene
expressions, induce cancerous-cell apoptosis (death of harmful cells) and stop
cancerous tumors from spreading.
Antioxidant & Anti-Inflammatory: as an
antioxidant and help the body get rid of free radicals. Sweet basil is an
excellent source of antioxidants such as phenolic compounds and polyphenols.
Research published in 2012 showed that these antioxidants make basil a great
choice for helping with inflammatory diseases. Because oxidative stress and
inflammation are often present with serious illnesses like diabetes and heart
disease, this research is promising for combating the increase in these health
Antimicrobial: against a wide range of bacteria,
yeasts, molds and viruses. This means you can add protection against the
candida virus and various forms of skin irritations to the long list of proven
benefits of basil.
Herbal Remedies with Basil
Calming the Stomach: One-half teaspoon of dried or
fresh basil leaf in water can often help soothe indigestion and alleviate
feelings of fullness.
Coughing and Colds: chew fresh leaves to calm
coughing or make a calming tea of dried basil to help soothe illness.
Facial Steam for Headache: A facial steam with dried
basil leaf can help alleviate a headache. Add a tablespoon of dried basil leaf
to 2 cups of boiling water in a large pot. Carefully lean over the pot, cover
head with a towel and breathe in the steam for 5-10 minutes until headache
starts to subside.
Stings and Bites: If you are working outside and get
bitten or stung by an insect and don’t have any plantain growing nearby,
chewing up a basil leaf and applying to the bite will help relieve the pain and
draw out the venom.
Blood Sugar: There is some evidence that basil can
help level out blood sugar if consumed regularly and drank as a juice or tea.
Stress Reduction: One herbalist suggests adding 2
cups of strong basil leaf tea to a warm bath to help reduce stress and
Basil Essential Oil Benefits
Basil Linalool Essential Oil is one of the finest oils
available for calming and focusing the mind, and is also useful for easing
tension in the head and neck. It is preferred as a mind-clearing oil for
spiritual meditation. Due to the high linalool content (which makes this oil very
relaxing) you can also use basil to help ease the transition into bedtime.
Basil also can help uplift your mood.
Cardiovascular Health: can help the muscles that
control blood vessel function to contract and relax, promoting healthy blood
pressure. Benefits of basil include the ability to help prevent dangerous
platelet aggregation, clumping together of blood platelets that can form a clot
within the arteries and cause cardiac arrest.
Cold & Flu: add one to two drops to a steam bath,
or make a homemade vapor rub using eucalyptus oil and basil oil that can
massaged into the chest to open up your nasal passages.
Detoxification: sickly rats were given basil extract
over a period of five days, they experienced significant improvements in
producing detoxifying enzymes, higher antioxidant defenses and a reduction of
fat buildup in the liver that can cause liver disease.
Fights Depression: Benefits of basil also apply to
those with mental disorders or mood-related illnesses, including depression and
anxiety. Basil is also considered an antidepressant by some since it can
positively impact brain function within the adrenal cortex, helping stimulate
neurotransmitters that regulate the hormones responsible for making us happy
Insect Repellent: research has shown that the
volatile oils found in basil can repel mosquitoes and help to prevent bug
bites. To make a homemade bug spray or lotion, dilute several drops of basil
essential oils with carrier oil and massage into skin or swollen bites as
Mood Enhancer: Inhaling basil can help restore mental
alertness and fight fatigue since it’s naturally a stimulant that works on the
nervous system and adrenal cortex. Many people find it beneficial for reducing
symptoms like sluggishness, brain fog and poor moods that accompany adrenal
fatigue or chronic fatigue. Diffuse basil essential oil throughout your home or
inhale it directly from the bottle. You can also combine a couple drops of
basil oil with a carrier oil like jojoba and put it on your wrists for an
Muscle Relaxant: you can rub a few drops of basil
essential oil along with coconut oil into painful, swollen muscles or joints.
To further help relax tense areas and feel immediate relief, try soaking in a
warm bath with Epsom salts and a couple drops of lavender oil and basil oil.
Stress Relief: Basil oil is known to be uplifting and
renewing, which makes it useful for lowering symptoms of anxiety, fear or
nervousness. Used for aromatherapy for centuries to help people deal with
racing thoughts and overwhelming feelings, you can burn basil oil at home to
relax and unwind. This can also work quickly for natural headache relief.
Massage one or two drops with a carrier oil into your feet or over your
adrenals nightly to reduce stress.
Basil Safety & Precautions
While basil is generally considered a safe herb in culinary
amounts, medicinal use of basil is considered “possibly unsafe” for children
and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Keep in mind also that basil
essential oil (or any essential oil) is very concentrated and merits special
precautions. Because basil could reduce blood pressure, in theory, it could
cause low blood pressure. Consult your healthcare professional before taking
basil (or any herb) medicinally.
The baking soda chemical formula aka the sodium
bicarbonate formula is NaHCO3. This baking soda formula represents its
composition of of sodium ions and bicarbonate ions. It’s a substance known for
its alkalizing effects thanks to a baking soda ph of 9.
In its most natural form sodium bicarbonate is also known
as nahcolite, a mineral that is found in various locations around the world. It
is commercially mined in areas of California, Colorado, Botswana and Kenya.
There are also large deposits in Mexico, Uganda, Turkey and Mexico.
Baking soda, also known as bicarbonate of soda (or sodium
bicarbonate), can do some major things. Its superpowers come from a two-letter
term: pH. That stands for “potential (or power) of hydrogen” to make something
either an acid or a base (alkaline). Baking soda is an alkaline substance. When
it mixes with an acid, it alters the pH level. That’s why it can quickly soothe
an upset stomach or cover a bad smell.
Throughout history, it has been used as a rising agent
when baking. It’s 100 percent sodium bicarbonate; so, when mixed with acid, it
makes bubbles and gives off a carbon dioxide gas, causing the dough to rise.
Baking powder and soda are similar yet different since baking powder is made up
of sodium bicarbonate and one or multiple acid salts.
Using Baking Soda
Air Freshening: commercial
air fresheners don’t eliminate odors they mask them with chemical compounds
that mask or cover up odors. Baking soda is a safe alternative that interacts
with odor molecules and breaks them up, neutralizing them. Make your own air
freshener – you need: A small jar, 1/3 cup baking soda, 10–15 drops of your
favorite essential oils, piece of cloth or paper, string or ribbon. Add the
baking soda and essential oils to the jar. Cover it with the cloth or paper,
and then secure it in place with the string. When the scent starts to fade,
give the jar a shake.
Antifungal & Antibacterial: Baking
soda has been shown to kill off bacteria including Streptococcus mutans, which
is a type of bacteria associated with tooth decay. It is also effective against
various fungal groups including yeasts, dermatophytes and molds that cause skin
and nail infections in humans.
Bathroom Cleaner: Baking
soda comes in handy because it whitens and disinfects many bathroom surfaces. Make
a paste using baking soda and a bit of water. Using a sponge or a cloth, rub
the mixture thoroughly onto the surface you want to clean. Wipe down the
surface 15–20 minutes later with a damp cloth.
Bug Bites & Stings: it
isn’t good for everyday use on your skin, it can soothe the redness, itching,
and stinging that are signs of a mild reaction to an insect bite. You can also
make your own paste of one-part baking soda to three parts water. This also
works for poison ivy and rashes. ½ cup in the bathtub and soak for 20 minutes,
rinse off before getting out.
Chemotherapy Support: research
does show that it can help some cancer treatments work better. Some
chemotherapy drugs need alkaline conditions. Others become more toxic in an
acid environment. Mouth and throat changes are common chemo side effects. If
this happens to you, rinse your mouth three times daily with a mixture of 1 cup
warm water, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/8 teaspoon salt, followed by a
rinse with plain water.
you add baking soda and change the pH balance, the odors in your fridge or your
carpet come into a neutral state. Bad smells come from either strong acids
(think sour milk) or bases (like spoiled fish). Sprinkle it everywhere to reduce
odors. Mix with coconut oil and arrowroot powder for an all-natural deodorant.
Food Cleansing: Many
people worry about pesticides on foods. Pesticides are used to prevent crops
from damage by insects, germs, rodents and weeds. Interestingly, recent
research has found that soaking fruits and veggies in a baking soda wash is the
most effective way to remove pesticides without peeling them. One study found
that soaking fruit in a solution of baking soda and water for 12–15 minutes
removed nearly all of the pesticides.
Heartburn & Indigestion: Add
1/4 teaspoon of baking soda to a glass of water to zap acid in your stomach. Don’t
take baking soda within 2 hours of other medications. When the baking soda
lowers stomach acid, it can slow the rate at which your body absorbs some
medicines and change the way others work. Don’t give it to a child under 6
unless your pediatrician tells you to.
inflammation in the body is caused by an acidic environment. Using baking soda
can help balance pH of the blood thus reducing the pH of the body, which in
turn reduces water retention (edema) related to the body’s response to an acidic
environment. The less water retained by the body to protect itself from acids,
the less swelling and inflammation and associated pain there is.
Kidney Disease: A
daily dose of sodium bicarbonate can help people whose kidneys can no longer
remove enough acid from their blood. It helps balance the pH in the blood,
reducing the acid content of the body and creating an alkaline environment. Sodium
bicarbonate helps in decreasing stone formation and removing of material that
causes the kidney stones.
Kitchen Scrub: plain
baking soda and essential oils if desired on a cloth or sponge, gently scrubs
surfaces without scratching and while disinfecting.
Mouth Care: tooth
decay is caused by acid loving bacteria that live and excrete plaque on teeth
and gums. The pH balancing effects of baking soda help prevent bacterial growth
by reducing the acids in the mouth. All it takes is ½ teaspoon in 8oz water to
make a great, breath freshening, mouth rinse.
Silver Polish: Baking
soda is a handy alternative to commercial silver polishes. For this you will
need: An aluminum baking pan or a baking dish lined with aluminum foil, 1 cup
of boiling water, 1 tablespoon of baking soda, 1/2 cup of white vinegar, add
the baking soda to the aluminum baking pan and slowly, pour in the vinegar.
Next, pour in the boiling water and then place the silver in the baking pan. Almost
immediately, the tarnish should begin to disappear, and you can remove most
silverware from the pan within thirty seconds. However, heavily tarnished
silverware may need to sit in the mixture for up to a minute.
Skin Care: baking soda is a
great exfoliator for face, feet and joints; it helps by reducing acids in skin
and balancing pH of the surface, and gently removing dead skin that can clog
pores and cause wrinkles. Overuse can cause alkalization of the skin. The skin
needs to remain slightly acidic to be strong and healthy. Skin conditions like
eczema, psoriasis, toenail fungus, ring worm, body odor and allergic reactions
are all caused by bacteria and/or an acidic environment. Both of which are
eradicated by using baking soda internally and/or externally.
Milk-alkali syndrome: Excess
consumption of sodium bicarbonate may cause health ailments such as milk-alkali
syndrome. An overdose of baking soda may also cause vomiting, diarrhea, muscle
weakness and spasms. Care must be taken while consuming products that contain
baking soda. It is advisable to consult your health specialist if you have
blood pressure related ailments, kidney disease, are pregnant or breastfeeding
as they may have side effects on consumption.
Arrowroot is a starch obtained from the rhizomes
(rootstock) of several tropical plants, traditionally Maranta arundinacea, but
also Florida arrowroot from Zamia integrifolia, and tapioca from cassava
(Manihot esculenta), which is often labelled as arrowroot. Polynesian arrowroot
or pia (Tacca leontopetaloides), and Japanese arrowroot (Pueraria lobata), also
called kudzu, are used in similar ways.
Arrowroot Health Benefits
Arrowroot is used as a nutritional food for
infants and for people recovering from illness.
It is also used for stomach and intestinal
disorders, including diarrhea. Full of undigestible fiber that feeds good
bacteria and soothes mucous membranes.
Dietary fiber can help to clear out excess
cholesterol, further promoting cardiovascular health.
Some people sooth painful gums and sore mouth
by applying arrowroot directly to the affected area.
Babies cut teeth on arrowroot cookies. The
anti-inflammatory effects sooth irritated gums.
Intestinal problem (irritable bowel syndrome,
IBS). Early research suggests that taking powdered arrowroot three times per
day with meals for one month reduces stomach pain and diarrhea in people with
The significant levels of potassium found in
arrowroot mean that it can be a definite line of defense against heart-related
issues. Potassium is a vasodilator, meaning that it relaxes the tension in the
blood vessels and arteries, thereby lowering blood pressure and reducing your
risk of atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes.
It fights various foodborne pathogens such as
salmonella virus, preparing the body’s defense system against various diseases
and disorders. Researchers have demonstrated the antibacterial effect of the
use of arrowroot tea extracts on soups.
One particular member of the B family of
vitamins is folate, and it is found in high levels within arrowroot. Studies
have shown that folate is important for expecting mothers, as it can help to
prevent neural tube defects in their unborn child. Folate is also an important
factor in DNA synthesis and healthy cell division, thereby promoting rapid
healing and healthy growth.
Arrowroot is extremely low in calories as
compared to other starches like yams, potatoes or cassava. For this reason,
people trying to remain on a diet can get complex carbohydrates and a wealth of
nutrients, as well as a healthy dose of dietary fiber, which can eliminate the
desire to snack between meals.
Athlete’s foot is a common skin infection of
the feet caused by fungus. You can use arrowroot powder to treat this infection
by applying it to the affected area. The powder has the ability to absorb
moisture and sweat, which makes it difficult for the fungus to grow and spread.
Arrowroot powder is also used as a dry
shampoo by many. Its moisture-absorbing ability is useful in reducing the
greasiness in hair.
The anti-inflammatory properties of arrowroot
aids in curing bladder infections and urinary tract infections (UTIs). Doctors
advise its intake to those women who face frequent infections.
The essential minerals present in arrowroot
are very good for fighting weakness, fatigue, and cognitive disorders. It also
encourages oxygenation of your body’s organ systems and extremities, which can
boost your energy levels.
Topical application of arrowroot powder heals
wounds from black spider and scorpion bites.
The powder was used to treat the injury from
poisoned arrows, hence, the name
Apply the powder in the affected area to
Directly apply arrowroot powder to the gums
or mix it in juice or other beverages and drink it to get relief from mouth and
Arrowroot Nutritional Facts
Arrowroot is a rich source of carbohydrates, vitamin B9,
and minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, sodium, and phosphorus. It
also has trace amounts of zinc and iron, as well as vitamin B1 and B6.
Saturated and unsaturated fatty acids are also found in it in negligible
amounts. In addition, it contains fibers and some proteins and lipids too.
Arrowroot in Cooking
Arrowroot makes clear, shimmering fruit gels
and prevents ice crystals from forming in homemade ice cream. It can also be
used as a thickener for acidic foods, such as Asian sweet and sour sauce. It is
used in cooking to produce a clear, thickened sauce, such as a fruit sauce. It
will not make the sauce go cloudy, like cornstarch, flour, or other starchy
thickening agents would.
The lack of gluten in arrowroot flour makes
it useful as a replacement for wheat flour for those with a gluten intolerance.
It is, however, relatively high in carbohydrates and low in protein
(approximately 7.7%) and does not provide a complete substitute for wheat flour
Arrowroot thickens at a lower temperature
than flour or cornstarch, is not weakened by acidic ingredients, has a more
neutral taste, and is not affected by freezing. It does not mix well with
dairy, forming a slimy mixture.
It is recommended that arrowroot be mixed
with a cool liquid before adding to a hot fluid. The mixture should be heated
only until the mixture thickens and removed immediately to prevent the mixture
from thinning. Overheating tends to break down arrowroot’s thickening property.
Two teaspoons of arrowroot can be substituted
for one tablespoon of cornstarch, or one teaspoon of arrowroot for one
tablespoon of wheat flour.
Prepare crunchy fries by dipping potatoes in
salt pepper and arrowroot powder and then fry them.
It can be substituted for eggs as a binder.
Word of Caution:
Care should be taken when consuming arrowroot to alleviate diarrhea. Because
excess intake or consuming along with other medicines may cause constipation.
Other than that, there is no known danger or toxicity to arrowroot.
Want to try an all-natural herbal infusion of Arnica? Find it here.
Arnica montana, also known as wolf’s bane, leopard’s
bane, mountain tobacco and mountain arnica, is a moderately toxic European
flowering plant in the sunflower family. Arnica grows mainly in Siberia and
central Europe, as well as temperate climates in North America. Arnica is an
alpine plant, growing in nutrient-poor soil. It can potentially reach a height
of up to 60cm, but this is unusual given the harsh conditions at high
altitudes. It grows in meadows up to 3,000 metres above sea level, where it is
exposed to strong sunlight. The higher the altitude, the more aromatic the
plant will become.
The plants are rich in inulin, a compound between sugar and starch that the plants store in their underground organs as a source of energy. It is used as a natural sweetener for diabetics. The Compositae contain selenium and arnica ash is rich in manganese. Both selenium and manganese are powerful antioxidants in the human body and in addition manganese is an essential element needed for healthy bones, wound healing, and the metabolism of proteins, cholesterol and carbohydrates. It may well be that it is this rich source of manganese that facilitates healing, acting in combination with the other plant chemicals. Manganese levels affect the levels of iron, magnesium and calcium in the body.
Generations of Swiss mountain guides chewed arnica leaves
to prevent fatigue induced by climbing. The dried leaves were used as a
substitute for tobacco, hence its common name of mountain tobacco. The dried
flowers promote sneezing, so it was also known as snuff plant. Fall kraut, fall
herb and wound herb, other eponyms, demonstrate the age-old use for the effects
The flowers are used as a compress for sprains and
bruises. Herbally, the plant has been used for traumatic injuries involving
bruising, and as a cardiac tonic for weak and weary hearts. It is also used
homeopathically to reduce emotional and physical trauma, support the heart, and
for weakness and weariness in the elderly.
Arnica is also used to stimulate the kidneys but can be
quite toxic in herbal solutions. The ingestion of large quantities can cause
irritation to the gut; a temporary stimulation is followed by a depression of
the circulation, respiration and temperature. Violent headaches ensue, the
pupils dilate and then muscular paralysis sets in. The whole nervous system is paralyzed
and death results. Arnica should be used judiciously on the skin as it can
cause nasty irritating rashes.
Mother Jai’s creates all-natural Arnica Oil in small batches in Arvada, Colorado. The herbal infusion is safe to use on the skin and works wonders on injuries and pain. When combined with St John’s Wort oil the benefits are doubled. Find it here.
With February coming to a close we are all starting to think
about Spring. Allergy season is just around the corner and we’re all dreading
it. So, what’s your plan this year? Suffer with antihistamine side effects or
try something different?
Mother Jai’s has the simple answer with her OrganicAllergy Relief Tea!
This simple combination of Stinging Nettles Leaf and Red
Clover Flowers and Herb has strong antihistamine (anti-allergy) and
anti-inflammatory properties that reduce sinus pressure and stop histamine
reactions. All of this without any side effects! No drowsiness! No foggy brain!
No painful over-drying of sinuses!
Does It Work?
This proprietary blend of Stinging Nettles, Red Clover
Flowers, and Red Clover Leaf provides a wide variety of nutrients essential for
health. The specific combination of nutrients found in these herbs are known to
reduce allergy symptoms with the first dose and to continue reducing allergic
reactions and their symptoms with continued use.
The great thing about these herbs is that they are simply
nutrient dense vegetables that you would have extreme difficulty overdosing or
getting ill from consuming them in tea multiple times daily. They provide
support without side effects for the entire season and on if you also struggle
with inside allergens.
Consuming this tea on a daily basis has been known to
reduce or eliminate indoor and pet allergies as well, with continued use and
depending on the severity of your allergies. You can get relief without feeling
drunk and dumb, that’s how drugs like Sudafed always made me feel anyway.
Either way your eliminating the horrible side effects of
antihistamines and reducing the chemicals in your body while also getting more
water and nutrients. Four very important, and yet so simple, ways to improve your
overall health and wellness.
Stinging Nettles (Urtica dioica): an herbaceous perennial flowering plant originally from Europe, Africa, and Asia. It is cultivated for food, textiles, medicines, and teas worldwide now.
Cooked Nettles taste similar to spinach and is rich in
vitamins A and C, iron, potassium, manganese, and calcium. Fresh leaves contain
approximately 82.4% water, 17.6% dry matter, 5.5% protein, 0.7 to 3.3% fat, and
7.1% carbohydrates. They must be cooked or dried to be safely
handled or eaten.
Nettle has agglutinin, acetophenone,
alkaloids, acetylcholine, chlorogenic acid, butyric acid, chlorophyll, caffeic
acid, carbonic acid, choline, histamine, coumaric acid, formic acid,
pantothenic acid, kaempferol, coproporphyrin, lectin, lecithin, lignan,
linoleic and linolenic acids, palmitic acid, xanthophyll, quercetin, quinic
acid, serotonin, stigmasterol, terpenes, violaxanthin, and succinic acid in its
Nettle also contains 2,5% fatty substance,
14–17% albumins, and 18% protein in dry matter. Seeds of nettle contain 8–10%
fixed oil. 1 kg fresh plant contains 130 mg
vitamin C, 730 mg carotene, and oxalate.
Stinging hair of nettle contains formic acid,
histamine, and acetylcholine.
Leaves of nettle contain provitamin A,
vitamin B1, K, xanthophylls, and sistosterin
Ashes of nettle contain 6,3% ferric oxide,
potassium, calcium, and silicium.
Dried Nettles herb has been used in the traditional
Austrian medicine internally (as tea or fresh leaves) to treat disorders of the
kidneys and urinary tract, gastrointestinal tract, locomotor system, skin,
cardiovascular system, hemorrhage, influenza, rheumatism, and gout.
Nettle stems contain a bast fiber that has been
traditionally used for the same purposes as linen and is produced by a similar
retting process. Unlike cotton, nettles grow easily without pesticides. The
fibers are coarser, however.
Historically, nettles have been used to make clothing for
2,000 years, and German Army uniforms were almost all made from nettle during
World War I due to a potential shortage of cotton. More recently, companies in
Austria, Germany, and Italy have started to produce commercial nettle textiles.
Clover (Trifolium pretense): a
short-lived herbaceous perennial flowering plant in the bean family, native to
Europe, Western Asia, and Africa. Is now naturalized in many other regions.
Red clover’s flowers and leaves are edible and can be
added as garnishes to any dish. The flowers often are used to make jelly and
tisanes and are used in essiac recipes. Their essential oil may be extracted,
and its unique scent used in aromatherapy.
Red Clover is used in traditional medicine of India as
deobstruent, antispasmodic, expectorant, sedative, anti-inflammatory and
antidermatosis agent. In alternative medicine, red clover is promoted as a
treatment for a variety of human maladies, including symptoms of menopause,
coughs, disorders of the lymphatic system and a variety of cancers.
Dietary amounts of red clover are safe, but dietary
supplement extracts may cause rash-like reactions, muscle ache, headache,
nausea, vaginal bleeding in women, and slow blood clotting. Due to its coumarin
derivatives, T. pratense should be used with caution in individuals with
coagulation disorders or currently undergoing anticoagulation therapy.
Due to our recent discovery of the lead content of bentonite clay MotherJai.com has opted for an ingredient with no known contamination, activated charcoal. Continue reading below for the latest research and information backing the use and benefits of using activated charcoal for mouth care.
Toothpowder – 2oz Jar
Easy to use and fluoride free for a healthy mouth and beautifully white teeth.
Activated charcoal, also called activated carbon, activated coal or carbo activatus, has been processed to make it very porous with an exceptionally large surface area, which makes it particularly adsorptive (electronically absorptive). According to the book “Medical Biochemistry: Human Metabolism in Health and Disease,” activated charcoal absorbs a variety of poisons and toxins, but does not bind well to alcohols, strong acids and bases, carbon monoxide, iron, lead, arsenic, fluorine, boric acid or many petroleum products such as industrial cleaners and lubricants.
Activated charcoal is used to treat poisonings, reduce
intestinal gas (flatulence), lower cholesterol levels, prevent hangover, and
treat bile flow problems (cholestasis) during pregnancy.
Activated Charcoal Works (AmazingHealth.com)
Activated charcoal works by adsorption, which is an
electrical action, rather than absorption, which is a mechanical action.
Activated charcoal adsorbs most organic and inorganic chemicals that do not
belong in the body, but no studies have been able to prove that it adsorbs
nutrients, as some people are afraid of. It will adsorb any medications
however, and, other than in the case of an overdose, activated charcoal needs
to be taken two hours before or after any medications.
Charcoal added to the diet of sheep for six months did
not cause a loss of nutrients, as compared with sheep not receiving charcoal.
Blood tests showed no significant difference between the two groups of animals,
and there were no visible signs of any nutritional deficiency. A level of 5% of
the total diet was given as charcoal. It did not affect the blood or urinary
levels of calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, inorganic phosphorus, potassium,
sodium, zinc, creatinine, uric acid, urea nitrogen, alkaline phosphatase, total
protein, or urine pH.
The form of charcoal used in modern medical science is
activated charcoal USP, a pure wood charcoal carbon that has no carcinogenic
properties. Activated charcoal is an odorless, tasteless powder. One
teaspoonful of it has a surface area of more than 10,000 square feet. This
unique feature allows it to adsorbs large amounts of chemicals or poisons. The
powder must be stored in a tightly sealed container, as it readily adsorbs
impurities from the atmosphere.
Activated charcoal can be used internally and externally
for humans and pets for the following:
Antidote for food poisoning or accidental
ingestion of poisons, poisonous spider, snake, or bug bites, or poison ivy
Eliminate toxins that can contribute to
anemia in cancer patients
Filter toxins from blood, in cases of liver
or kidney disease
Deodorize colostomies and disinfect wounds
(shouldn’t be used on open wounds or you may end up with a tattoo)
Remove tartar and plaque buildup when used as
Alleviate allergy headaches, minor arthritic
symptoms, menstrual pains, diarrhea, painful urination, flatulence, sore throat
irritation, flu-like symptoms, drug overdose, cold sores, tooth abscesses, and
toxin from foods.
Activated charcoal powder will not cause someone to have
constipation, but if a person has a problem with constipation and then drinks
charcoal slurry, the activated charcoal will back up the colon due to blockages
already present in the colon. Research has shown that if a person has a problem
with constipation and does a colon cleanse and addressed the cause of
constipation, then that person can drink charcoal slurry without having the
activated charcoal build up in the colon.
Benefits & Risks of Activated Charcoal BY
Charcoal has been used in medicine since the ancient
Egyptians used it to absorb the odor of rotting wounds, Drugs.com states.
Useful for its ability to absorb impurities, charcoal plays an important role
in filtering drinking water and fish tanks and treating acute poisoning.
Activated charcoal, also known as medicinal charcoal, is a fluffy, fine, black,
odorless, tasteless powder without gritty material.
of Internal Consumption
In an emergency, activated charcoal can be used to treat
certain kinds of poisoning, according to MayoClinic.com. Being extremely
absorbent, activated charcoal helps prevent the poison from being absorbed from
the stomach and passed into the body. In the case of severe poisoning, several
doses of activated charcoal may be needed to treat the victim. Activated
charcoal is not effective against poisons that are corrosive agents like lye,
strong acids, iron, boric acid, lithium and alcohols. Furthermore, charcoal
should not be used to counteract petroleum products such as leaning fluid, coal
oil, fuel oil, gasoline, kerosene and paint thinner because charcoal will not
prevent these substances from being absorbed into the body.
Effects of Internal Consumption
Common side effects of activated charcoal include nausea,
vomiting and constipation, Drugs.com states. Other side effects include bowel
obstruction, black-colored stool and a chalk-like taste have also been
reported. About 20 percent of patients’ experience vomiting about 10 minutes
after ingesting activated charcoal. One case reports that a patient developed a
bezoar or mass in his small bowel that caused an obstruction following the
administration of 30 to 60 g of activated charcoal via nasogastric tube every
four to six hours for five days.
Internal Use in Cases of Poisoning
Activated charcoal is used only for treating some cases
of poisoning. Proper doses vary from patient to patient and you must not change
your dosage unless your doctor tells you to do so. The powder form of activated
charcoal is taken as a mixture of the powder and water with the amount of
powder dependent on the age of the patient. For adults and teenagers, a single
dose treatment is usually 25 to 100 g, MayoClinic,com states. For children from
1 to 12 years old, the dose is usually 25 to 50 g or the dose may be based on
body weight, typically 0.5 to 1 g per kg. For children up to one year old, the
dose is usually 10 to 26 g.
In addition, activated charcoal can be used in cases of
food poisoning when nausea and diarrhea are present. Adults take 25 grams at
onset of symptoms or when food poisoning is suspected, and children should be
given 10 grams. Increase dosage as necessary. Remember, it’s essential that
adequate water is consumed when activated charcoal is taken.
Associated with Internal Consumption
Do not combine activated charcoal with drugs used for
constipation (cathartics such as sorbitol or magnesium citrate). This can cause
electrolyte imbalances and other problems.
when Consumed Internally
Additionally, activated charcoal can interfere with the
absorption of nutrients, supplements and interfere with prescription
medications. Take activated charcoal 90 minutes to two hours prior to meals,
supplements and prescription medications. Potential adverse interactions with
the following drugs can occur:
Naltrexone (used for alcohol and opioid
Morphine Sulfate Liposome
Do not use activated
charcoal as a supplement if you take these medications. Activated charcoal may
also reduce absorption of certain nutrients.
Teeth – Activated charcoal helps whiten teeth while promoting
good oral health by changing the pH balance in the mouth, helping prevent
cavities, bad breath and gum disease. It works to whiten teeth by adsorbing
plaque and microscopic tidbits that stain teeth. This activated charcoal use is
cost-effective and an all-natural solution for a bright smile.
To whiten your teeth naturally, wet a toothbrush and dip
into powdered activated charcoal. Brush teeth as normal, paying special
attention to areas showing the most staining. Sip a bit of water, swish through
mouth thoroughly and spit. Rinse well, until spit is clear.
Note: Be careful, for it can (and will) stain grout and
fabrics. Protect counters, floors and clothing before using. If you have
crowns, caps or porcelain veneers, it’s possible that activated charcoal will
stain them. In addition, if your teeth become sensitive, quit using it.
Cleansing – Most people don’t think about mold living in
their bodies, but it can. Toxic mold causes depression, kidney and liver
failure, decreased brain function, heart disease, eye irritation, headaches,
vomiting, impaired immune system function and severe respiratory distress.
Homes that have flooded, or even those with small leaks
under a sub-floor or in the walls, can create an environment where mold can
thrive. Poor ventilation contributes to the problem, and bathrooms, basements
and laundry rooms are particularly prone to mold growth.
If there is visible mold in your home, it must be
mitigated properly. It’s important to wear gloves and a protective mask to keep
from inhaling toxic mold during cleanup. Activated charcoal, baking soda, apple
cider vinegar, tea tree oil and borax can be used to clean mold off hard
surfaces and keep mold from growing in the future.
If you or your family experience symptoms including
wheezing, rashes, watery eyes, coughing or headaches that aren’t explained in
other ways, your home should be evaluated for mold spore levels, even if no
visible mold is detected. It can thrive behind drywall, under floors and in
Filtration – Activated charcoal traps impurities in water
including solvents, pesticides, industrial waste and other chemicals. This is
why it’s used in water filtration systems throughout the world. However, it
doesn’t trap viruses, bacteria and hard-water minerals. According to a study
published in the Journal of the Canadian Dental Association, activated carbon filters
(activated charcoal), removes some fluoride. Avoiding fluoride and detoxing
from it is important for oral health, proper immune system functioning, and
healthy kidneys and liver.
Drinking water is essential to good health; however,
typical tap water is toxic and laden with chemicals, toxins and fluoride.
Ingestion should be limited whenever possible. Activated charcoal water filters
are available for whole-home systems, as well as countertop models. Drink 8–10
glasses of pure water per day to help soothe the digestive tract, fight
fatigue, keep organs operating, and provide lubrication for joints and tissues.
and Body Health – Activated charcoal uses extend beyond
internal applications. For external treatments, it’s effective at treating body
odor and acne and relieving discomfort from insect bites, rashes from poison
ivy or poison oak, and snake bites.
After a mosquito bite or bee sting, mix one capsule of
activated charcoal with ½ tablespoon of coconut oil, and dab on affected area.
Reapply every 30 minutes until itching and discomfort are gone. As activated
charcoal stains nearly everything it touches, wrap with a bandage.
To treat bites from snakes and spiders, including the
Brown Recluse or Black Widow, you want to cover a larger area than just a small
bandage, as the bacteria and viruses that lead to tissue damage need to be
Create a wrap out of fabric that’s big enough to go
around the affected area twice. Dab the mixture of coconut oil and activated
charcoal on the fabric, and wrap. Secure with bandages. Reapply every two to
three hours, rinsing well between applications.
To treat acne, mix one capsule of activated charcoal with
two teaspoons of aloe vera gel, and smooth over face. Let dry and rinse off
completely. The activated charcoal binds with environmental toxins and dirt
that contribute to acne. It’s also good for spot treatments.
charcoal uses include helping prevent cellular damage to kidneys and liver, as
well as supporting healthy adrenal glands. It’s imperative to cleanse toxins
and chemicals routinely from the body. Activated charcoal benefits major organs
by helping the body flush out the toxins and chemicals that cause the damage.
Aging is a natural part of life, but due to the toxic load
we are exposed to through food, our homes and workplaces, and our environment,
to prevent pre-mature aging we must get rid of them.
For this activated charcoal use, take two capsules per
day after exposure to nonorganic foods, heavy meals or after contact to other
toxins. This supports better cognitive function, a reduction in brain fog,
healthier kidney and liver function, and a healthier gastrointestinal tract.
Charcoal for First Aid – It’s recommend to have activated
charcoal as a part of first aid kits, both at home and at work. In the event of
an emergency where toxins, drugs or chemicals are ingested, it’s imperative to
call 911 immediately. If you have activated charcoal on hand, be sure to tell
the operator; the operator may advise to administer it prior to the first
responder’s arrival. Depending on the amount of toxins or chemicals ingested
and types of toxins, multiple doses may be required. At the hospital,
physicians are able to administer more as needed.
Charcoal & Good Bacteria
If activated charcoal is so great at getting rid of
toxins and bad bacteria then you may be wondering does activated charcoal
absorb beneficial bacteria as well? Well first off, remember that charcoal is
adsorbent rather than absorbent. At least one study published in The Journal of
Veterinary Medical Science demonstrates that activated charcoal may be able to
somewhat differentiate between what it should and should not adsorb.
The researchers conducting this study found that
“activated charcoal showed lower binding capacity to the normal bacterial flora
tested than that to E. coli O157:H7 strains.” So it appears as though
toxin-producing strains of E. coli were more likely to be adsorbed by the
activated charcoal while normal bacterial flora in the intestine including
Enterococcus faecium, Bifidobacterium thermophilum, and Lactobacillus
acidophilus were more likely to be left alone.
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