Black sodas are black because they contain activated charcoal. They are said to detoxify and help with weight loss. Is that really true?
What is black lemonade?
You can mix black lemonades or juices and smoothies with activated charcoal yourself or buy them ready-made in a shop. The name “Black Lemonade” alone sounds mysterious and cool. The site doesn’t make it any better and it can take quite an effort to take the first sip. But you hardly taste the charcoal at all, so it doesn’t detract from the taste experience.
Can black lemonade actually detoxify or even help you lose weight? First, let’s look at the effects of activated charcoal. Because it can actually detoxify.
What is activated charcoal?
Activated charcoal is the well-known charcoal that was once available in tablet form in every home and first-aid kit and is mostly used for diarrhea or poisoning. Activated charcoal is also administered in the emergency room of clinics as a first-aid remedy in the event of poisoning, for example when children (or adults) accidentally ingested medication or plant toxins. In the case of alcohol poisoning (with moderate success) or an overdose of drugs (when the drugs are taken orally), the activated cole is also used again and again.
What is the difference between activated charcoal and charcoal?
The activated charcoal is not charcoal that is thrown into the blender to prepare the Black Lemonade, but special medicinal charcoal that has been prepared for internal use.
The charcoal (made of wood, coconut shells, etc.) is not only cleaned but also treated with a special process in such a way that numerous pores and cavities form inside the charcoal. Thanks to these pores, charcoal can absorb toxins, which explains the detoxification effect and which would not be the case with charcoal.
How does activated charcoal work?
Activated charcoal binds to bacteria and various toxins in the digestive system and ensures that they can no longer cause any damage, i.e. are not absorbed but are excreted with the stool.
This means that the activated charcoal must be taken promptly after the respective poison has been swallowed since it can of course only bind it as long as it is still in the intestine. The activated charcoal can only absorb it there, preventing it from entering the bloodstream from the intestines.
What toxins can activated charcoal detoxify?
However, activated carbon does not bind every poison. The effect with alcohol, acids, and alkalis is not optimal, and apparently not with metals either, but this has the advantage that the activated carbon does not absorb minerals to any significant extent. When it comes to vitamins, phytochemicals, and antioxidants, however, things are different. Here you have to assume that the coal also binds these substances to some extent and thus makes them worthless.
As explained above, activated charcoal detoxifies medicines, drugs, and plant toxins. Mold and its toxins should also be able to be detoxified well.
When should activated charcoal be taken?
It is ideal to administer the activated charcoal immediately after the poison has been ingested, but at least within the first hour. Activated charcoal can always be seen in the household as a first-aid remedy that you give immediately or take yourself before you go to the hospital. Otherwise, many toxins can do a lot of damage in the 15 to 30 minutes it takes to get to the clinic, which activated charcoal can prevent.
It is now known that activated charcoal powder works better than the earlier tablets. It is therefore better to take capsules that are filled with powder. This can be opened and mixed with water or lemonade, which then becomes Black Lemonade.
How do you make black lemonade? The basic recipe
A black lemonade requires a few ingredients that you usually have at home. Only the activated carbon may still need to be organized:
Ingredients for a 300ml jar:
- Freshly squeezed juice of half a lemon
- 1 capsule of activated charcoal
- Stevia or yacon syrup or maple syrup for sweetening
- If desired, ice cubes and a slice of lemon for decoration
Open the capsule and add the activated charcoal powder to the juice. Mix well. If you like ice cream, put ice cubes in the glass and fill it up with water. Sweeten to taste.
When is the best time for Black Lemonade?
Black Lemonade is best consumed on its own, and ideally only when you feel you need to detox something you’ve eaten, drunk, or accidentally swallowed.
However, it’s not a drink that you can have at any time simply because it looks cool, as activated charcoal can have side effects.
What side effects can activated charcoal have?
Since activated charcoal can absorb all kinds of substances, it naturally also does this with medication or other substances that you take in the same time window. Therefore, one should wait at least two hours before drinking a black lemonade after taking the medication. So you never serve black lemonade unless you know if the person in question is taking medication – which includes birth control pills!
How useful are black smoothies or black juices?
Activated charcoal can also bind some of the vital substances from meals and thus make them ineffective. Black lemonade is therefore not a drink to take with meals. Nor should you enrich the lemonade with valuable ingredients, juices, superfoods, etc. For this reason, smoothies with activated charcoal are for naught. You would detract from the health value of the rest of the smoothie ingredients—the fruits, veggies, and herbs.
The Black Lemonade, on the other hand, only contains a little lemon juice to improve the taste and is therefore the best solution if you want to consume activated charcoal. However, it is not clear whether you can also (fully) enjoy the vitamin C contained in lemon juice.
Since activated charcoal can have a constipating effect, caution should be exercised by people who have a problem with it anyway.
Can you lose weight with black lemonade?
If no other weight loss measures are taken (change in diet, calorie reduction, exercise, etc.), black lemonade cannot help you lose weight.
Anyone who has been drinking Cola, Fanta, and Co and now wants to switch to a homemade lemonade should definitely do so, as you can lose weight simply by replacing sweetened drinks with unsweetened or less sweetened ones. But you shouldn’t switch to the Black Lemonade. Activated charcoal is only added if you want to specifically detoxify, which you can also do as a cure, e.g. B. a few days.