DE OX T Cleansing fans are dropping their go-to green juice for darker pills and brews. Nicole Catanese investigates.
WEEKLY TIPPLE “It’s perfect when I feel sluggish.” Chelsea Matthews, 31, drinks Juice Served Here’s Charcoal Lemonade twice a week. Anita Gatto, 32, says it’s her way of detoxing “without having to commit to a full cleanse.” As for the odd black hue? “When I close my eyes it’s just lemonade.” Another benefit is a flatter belly: “I’m not as bloated.” But it’s not only the juicing crew who are committed to the effects of the charcoal. KEEP CALM AND JET-SET ON Shiva Rose, creator of the popular all-natural-lifestyle blog Thelocalrose.com, swears by pouring the contents of charcoal capsules into a glass of water while travelling to calm her stomach after an indulgent dinner or to clear away any traces of bacteria in the drinking water. Little surprise that this comes highly recommended for globe-trotters. FRESH APPROACH So is this new trend a health game changer? “It’s a shotgun approach,” says Donald D. Hensrud, an internist at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, who notes that there’s currently no data that shows charcoal should be used other than therapeutically, for poisoning. And the biggest concern: Activated charcoal can’t tell the difference between nutrients and toxins, says Hensrud. PILLING IT ON Morrison, however, is pro charcoal – but for a calculated digestive tract overhaul. “The best time to take it is anytime you feel ‘toxic’,” says Morrison, who recommends 500 milligrams “After a night of too much food or alcohol or just for general maintenance seasonally.” The good news: You can’t OD on it. Fans like Gatto say that they aren’t quitting charcoal anytime soon: “Drinking it just feels like detox.”