Although it seems that Activated Charcoal has only recently hit the mainstream, it’s been used as far back as the ancient Egyptians for a variety of reasons.
At truthpaste, we are delighted to be adding Activated Charcoal to our product range. As you probably know by now, we are all about honesty when it comes to our ingredients and our new ranges are no exception. So, if you were wondering what all the fuss is about Activated Charcoal, here are some nuggets of information for you to enjoy.
What is activated charcoal?
Not to be confused with regular charcoal, which is a carcinogen, so please don’t start eating a lot of burnt toast or barbecue coals, Activated Charcoal is NOT the same thing! Activated Charcoal has been oxidised and comes in the form of a fine black powder. It can be derived from the carbon rich materials such as the charcoal of peat, olive pits, bone char (ew!) or coconut husks. You’ll be pleased to know that our Activated Charcoal is made from organic coconut husks and not bone char.
To make charcoal ‘activated’ you need to heat the above materials to a very high temperature. This effectively strips the charcoal of any previously absorbed molecules, reducing the pore size of each molecule and creating more holes. In short, the process transforms the charcoal into a sort of sponge ready to absorb acids, toxins and bacteria.
Who discovered activated charcoal?
No one knows for certain. Presumably it’s been used as long as there have been people. There is evidence that the Ancient Egyptians used Activated Charcoal for stomach problems around 1500 BC from there onwards. There’s evidence to suggest that it’s been used as part of filter systems, medications and purifiers from as early as 400 BC.
What does activate charcoal do?
You know we said it was like a sort of sponge? Well, put in its most basic terms, that’s what it does. It soaks up toxins, stains and acids. This is why it’s so versatile. You will, no doubt, have come across hospitals or vets using charcoal to treat poisons. You can find it in skincare products and dietary supplements, and of course truthpaste. There are various studies to show the effectiveness of Activated Charcoal for medical use and water purification, although less in the way of studies for health and beauty benefits.
Does activated charcoal work?
As with any natural product, there is debate about the beneficial effects. For the most part, this is anecdotal, although largely because there have been very few studies undertaken and even fewer conclusive studies. Whilst the most recent studies on charcoal based products have been inconclusive, there is much to suggest that it is beneficial to the skin and teeth. The good news is that all research shows that it does not have any adverse effects in any of its current forms.
Why do we use this carrier oil in Truthpaste?
In Ayurvedic practice, Calendula is used for oil pulling in much the same way that you would with coconut oil. The antiseptic properties work to prevent gingivitis and plaque build up. Studies suggest calendula can help to repair the soft tissue of the gums whilst actively fighting plaque.