Saturday, January 24, 2015

The Many Uses of Charcoal

Dr Abe V Rotor
 The secret of good cooking and tasty food is basically in the fuel used. Pugon made pandesal, charcoal broiled fish, inasal chicken, smoked fish, smoked ham, traditional lechon, steak on charcoal, rice in clay pot - these are examples of indigenous art using wood and charcoal in cooking. This is the secret of the legendary grandmother's pie, so to speak.

Cooking with charcoal brings out the real aroma of food. It does away with smokey and gas smell in food. Charcoal cooks food at a natural pace, which makes food taste better.

Other than being the most practical and popular fuel for cooking, these are other uses of charcoal.

Charcoal is safe and effective deodorizer and dehumidifiers.
Keep a pack of charcoal inside the refrigerator to eliminate food odor, in some cases putrefying smell. Carry in the car a pack of charcoal, artistically kept in a box, to remove odor of sweat, gas, food and molds. A pack of charcoal inside the clothes cabinet, book cabinet, kitchen cabinet, and bedroom will give a clean smell. Use charcoal in clinics and schoolrooms, specially if they are newly painted. Science tells us that charcoal has the unique property of ADSORPTION, that is, it binds substances on its surface. These include fumes of paints, alkali, alcohol, acids, odors of decomposition, and even microscopic particles of carbon, spores of fungi and bacteria.

Powdered charcoal is remedy of scouring in swine.
Simply powder some pieces of wood charcoal and add to regular ration. Repeat until scouring subsides. Charcoal has natural desiccant as well as chemical properties that fight diarrhea. Anti-diarrhea medicine has charcoal as an important ingredient.

Activated charcoal is used in water filtration.
This removes bacteria and odor of drinking water. It is also used in fountain and aquarium filters. (photo)

Charcoal is added to growing medium in plant nurseries.
This is popular among orchid raisers. The idea is for the charcoal to adsorb the excess water, and release it later for the use of the plant.

Charcoal is used as insect repellant.
The practice includes adding powdered incense or resin, then train the smoke on roosting fowls to drive lice and fleas. Leaves of kamias or citrus are burnt on live coals to revive an unconscious person. It is aromatherapy. And this is how old folks fumigate their dwellings.

Today doctors, paramedics and medical centers use Activated Charcoal to –

1. Eliminate toxic by-products that cause anemia in cancer patients.
2. Disinfect and deodorize wounds.
3. Filter toxins from the blood in liver and kidney diseases.
4. Purify blood in transfusions.
5. Cut down on odors for ileostomy and colostomy patients.
6. Treat poisonings and overdoses of aspirin, and other drugs.
7. Treat some forms of dysentery, diarrhea, dyspepsia, and "foot and mouth" disease.
8. Treat poisonous snake, spider and insect bites.

In the US, activated Charcoal is part of the standard equipment on many ambulances, for use in poisonings. Mushroom poisoning, brown recluse spider bites, and snake bites can all be treated with Activated Charcoal. Doctors also use Activated Charcoal to prevent and treat intestinal infections, and as a cleansing and healing agents. Jaundice of the newborn, bee stings, poison ivy reactions, and many other illnesses can be helped with Activated Charcoal.

NOTE: While there are practical remedies using Activated Carbon for common ailments, or as part of local medical formulations, the administration of Activated Carbon to humans should be under the supervision of a medical doctor. The above list serves as a general reference only, details of which may be sourced from different scientific and medical publications, and the Internet.

References:TOTAL HEALTH Newsletter July 1998 Vol. I No. 5
ACTIVATED CHARCOAL - Uses in Modern Natural Healing;
Living with Nature, Volume 3

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