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Charcoal Drinks: A New Way to Detox?

NextTribe charcoal drinks

The latest healthy drink hardly looks good for you: Ink-black beverages containing charcoal are turning up across the country and promising to detox our poor polluted bodies. These beverages are a mild version of how activated charcoal is traditionally used in medicine, to assist in the treatment of food poisoning or drug overdoses.

The current incarnations tend to include just a minimal dose of activated charcoal to pull out toxins, but it may have some advantages. Health practitioners say the charcoal can boost energy levels a bit and give you a flatter stomach, mainly by quashing any excess gas. (Since charcoal can also deactivate medications you take, talk to your doctor if you love the stuff and want to guzzle it.)

Most people don’t taste the charcoal in these drink, but the texture of the beverage may be a bit chalkier or a tad gritty. If nothing else, it’s certainly a sensory thrill to sip something pitch black.

Here, some drinks to try:

  • Charcoal water: Typically contains water, some natural flavors, perhaps some stevia and activated charcoal. Glim’s offering gets its charcoal by heating coconut shells.
  • Charcoal lemonade: You may have seen this at your local juice bar. It’s one of the most popular ways to try activated charcoal in the classic sweet-sour cooler.
  • Charcoal latte: These are just gorgeous and begging to be on your Instagram feed. Cafes tend to create their own versions with espresso, milk and charcoal; Werewolf in Chicago adds honey and lavender to theirs –a bright idea for this black beverage. –Janet Siroto

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