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Activated Charcoal

So, what is activated charcoal?
Food grade activated charcoal is usually made by heating wood or nutshells to an extremely high temperatures and/or oxidising by exposing the raw material to steam or air. This process makes the carbon extremely porous. So porous, that one gram of activated charcoal can have a surface area equal to two tennis courts! There are other ways to make activated charcoal using chemicals so be sure to buy only "food grade" charcoal.
Activated charcoal can be used for water filtration, improving your soil, removing odours and even for the health and beauty of you, your pets and livestock!

ALERT! Activated charcoal should never be taken within two hours of any medication or supplement as it will absorb the medicine and render it ineffective!


"Charcoal medicine" has been used by hospitals and Naturopathic doctors for numerous ailments and drug overdoses. It is available in health food and supplement stores usually in capsule form but you can also find it in bulk. Because of its many uses and indefinite shelf life it's a great item to keep in the medicine chest.


Unfortunatly, food poisoning is becoming more and more common in this age of mass produced food. Activated charcoal has the ability to cure food poisoning by absorbing the toxins and bacteria. It will ease vomiting and stomach cramps from the flu and even cure a dogs upset stomach!


Charcoal can absorb many toxins and prevent them from entering the body. Activated charcoal should be given as soon as possible if there is suspected poisoning or overdose. CALL POISON CONTROL OR A HOSPITAL IMMEDIATELY! They can tell you what dosage to give. Having charcoal on hand can save a life!

Our dogs, cats, birds and livestock can come in contact with toxics plants, fertilisers and pesticides, spoiled garbage, blue-green algae, flea products, grapes, chocolate or many other toxins that can threaten their lives. Call your veterinarian for dosage but here's a guideline for using charcoal for animal poisoning:

* The recommended dose of activated charcoal for all species of animals is 1-3 grams of charcoal per 1 kg body weight.

Though activated charcoal can absorb more than 4,000 poisons, drugs, heavy metals, etc., here are a few it does not absorb well: Cyanide, ethanol, ethylene glycol, iron, lithium, methanol, mineral acids and salts are poorly adsorbed.


Charcoal can also draw toxins through the skin so it can be used externally too. A simple poultice along with internal use can be very effective home remedies against abscesses, tumours, infections, wounds, poison ivy, pink eye, snake bites, spider bites, haemorrhoids, earaches and much more.

Don't forget that this natural remedy works for animals also! My dog recently had a strawberry sized tumour on his leg which the vet diagnosed as a histiocytoma. This is a benign tumour but he said it would probably have to be surgically removed. I promptly brought Toby home and applied an activated charcoal poultice that night. I did this three nights in a row and by the third night it was half the size! Within a week it looked like he was only missing a patch of hair. This is amazing stuff!


Mix charcoal (1 to 2 Tbs.) with a little water (you can also mix in a little corn starch to help it stay moist) to form a wet paste. It should be moist but not crumbly or drippy.
Spread the paste on one half of a folded paper towel, thin cloth, or piece of gauze cut to fit the area to be treated. (For a small area, empty a teabag and fill with charcoal) When ready the cloth should be moist, and thoroughly saturated with the paste.
Then cover the paste by folding over the other half of the paper towel or cloth.
Next place the charcoal poultice on the affected body part making sure it completely covers the area.
Cover the poultice with plastic (when available, plastic food wrap works fine) cut to overlap the poultice by an inch on every side. This will keep it from drying out. If the charcoal dries out, it will not be able to adsorb.
Finish off by bandaging or taping the poultice securely in place. Leave it on for several hours, or better yet, overnight. After 6 to 10 hours another poultice can be applied.
When using charcoal internally you can fight gas, bloating, diarrhoea, acid indigestion, colic, liver disease, peptic ulcers, hangovers and more. Activated charcoal is not meant for long time use but can help with detoxing and cut your healing time greatly!


There are many commercial products coming out using charcoal to:

Remove odours from the home such as pets, smoke, garbage, paint, fumes, closets, musty basements and diaper pails.
Remove odours from stinky feet and shoes
Remove skunk odour
Remove odours from animal barns
Remove odours from sick rooms
Eliminate chemical smells
You can make your own by buying charcoal in bulk and making sachets or by simply poking holes in a can or jar and filling!


By using charcoal in the garden you can improve soil drainage, reduce soil compaction, increase nutrients, give greater retention of water in dry soils, improve germination plus improve plant resistance to fungal disease and insect infestations. It will also absorb many herbicides, heavy metals and other toxins in your soil.

It's a great natural fertiliser and an environmentally friendly insecticide!

There's just too many activated charcoal uses to list! You can list your own below! 

Activated charcoal uses was found under HOUSEHOLD REMEDIES.

I believe Activated charcoal is something everyone should have in their preps