As a concierge house call physician, I come across a broad range of medical illnesses, both acute and chronic. I incorporate holistic, functional and Western medicine in my diagnosis and treatment. When it comes to determining what to carry around in my doctor bag, I have to be efficient. Activated charcoal is always with me. But why?
This is one of the oldest natural remedies. It has been used for thousands of years, throughout the world, to treat a wide variety of illnesses. It is stocked in every emergency room to treat medication overdose and accidental ingestion. But that’s only the tip of the iceberg.
Activated charcoal has chemical properties that allow it to bind to nearly everything, which is what makes it so incredibly effective. A single teaspoon has the same surface area as an entire football field. It has the power to save lives.
It can also treat gastrointestinal illnesses, including gas, bloating, indigestion, diarrhea, food poisoning, heavy metal toxicity and bad breath. It is a treatment for skin infections, mosquito bites, spider bites, abscesses and cellulitis.
But what about beauty? Activated charcoal is popping up in nearly every beauty store around the country right now because it is one of the greatest methods for extracting toxins from the skin and teeth. It can be used on the face and body for cleansing and pulling out deep particles in the skin. It can be used for teeth whitening, as well.
The best part is that it’s safe. It has no active ingredient. It works by pulling out toxins (through a process called adsorption) and irreversibly binding to them.
If you were to ask me what one product you should keep in your medicine cabinet, my first answer will always be activated charcoal. — Dr. Jarred Mait
Dr. Jarred Mait is a licensed general medicine and holistic physician with degrees from the University of Miami and Washington University in St. Louis. He created Pulse & Remedy to provide patients with an entirely new way to experience a personal physician.