Activated Charcoal - NutraHacker Journal Club

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Acidic Activated Charcoal Prevents Obesity and Insulin Resistance in High-Fat Diet-Fed Mice

Metabolomic analysis of cecal contents revealed that neutral lipids, cholesterol, and bile acids were excreted at markedly higher levels in feces with charcoal treatment. Moreover, the hepatic expressions of genes encoding cholesterol 7 alpha-hydroxylase and hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA reductase/synthase 1 were up-regulated by activated charcoal, likely reflecting the enhanced excretions from the intestine and the enterohepatic circulation of cholesterol and bile acids. No damage or abnormalities were detected in the gastrointestinal tract, liver, pancreas, and lung. In conclusion, acidic activated charcoal may be able to attenuate HFD-induced weight gain and insulin resistance without serious adverse effects. These findings indicate a novel function of charcoal to prevent obesity, metabolic syndrome, and related diseases.

Activated charcoal decreases plasma bilirubin levels in the hyperbilirubinemic rat

The effectiveness of phototherapy and activated charcoal feeding for reducing plasma bilirubin concentrations was studied in the hyperbilirubinemic Gunn rat. The feeding of charcoal alone was just as effective in reducing plasma bilirubin concentrations as continuous phototherapy. An additive effect on reducing plasma bilirubin concentration was observed when phototherapy and the feeding of charcoal were administered together. The feeding of a 5% charcoal diet to weanling Gunn rats for 8 wk had no effect on growth rate.

Activated charcoal as an adjunct to phototherapy for neonatal jaundice

The administration of charcoal either by feeding or gavage was effective in reducing plasma bilirubin levels in both the adult and suckling jaundiced rat.These data suggest that charcoal could be a useful adjunct to phototherapy by binding bilirubin in the intestinal lumen and reducing the potential for the enterohepatic circulation of unconjugated bilirubin.

Le Carbone prevents liver damage in non-alcoholic steatohepatitis-hepatocellular carcinoma mouse model via AMPKα-SIRT1 signaling pathway activation

Le Carbone (LC), a fiber-enriched activated charcoal dietary supplement, claimed to be effective against inflammation associated with colitis, trimethylaminuria, and sclerosis. Our findings demonstrate that LC prevents the liver damage and progression of NASH, possibly by enhancing the AMPK-SIRT1 signaling pathway.

Primary Trimethylaminuria

Clinical characteristics: Primary trimethylaminuria is characterized by a fishy odor resembling that of rotten or decaying fish that results from excess excretion of trimethylamine in the urine, breath, sweat, and reproductive fluids. No physical symptoms are associated with trimethylaminuria. Affected individuals appear normal and healthy; however, the unpleasant odor often results in social and psychological problems. Symptoms are usually present from birth and may worsen during puberty. In females, symptoms are more severe just before and during menstruation, after taking oral contraceptives, and around the time of menopause.

Diagnosis/testing: The diagnosis of primary trimethylaminuria is established in a proband who:

  • Excretes (under normal dietary conditions) in the urine more than 10% of total trimethylamine (TMA) as the free amine; and
  • Has biallelic (homozygous or compound heterozygous), known loss-of-function pathogenic variants in FMO3 on molecular genetic testing.
Management: Treatment of manifestations:

Dietary restriction of:

  • Trimethylamine (present in milk obtained from wheat-fed cows) and its precursors including choline (present in eggs, liver, kidney, peas, beans, peanuts, soya products, and brassicas [Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower]), lecithin and lecithin-containing fish oil supplements;
  • Trimethylamine N-oxide (present in seafood [fish, cephalopods, and crustaceans]);
  • Inhibitors of FMO3 enzyme activity such as indoles (found in brassicas).
Note: Planning and monitoring of diet to ensure that the daily intake of choline and folate meets recommendations for age and sex; no restriction of dietary choline during pregnancy and lactation.

Use of:

  • Acid soaps and body lotions to remove secreted trimethylamine by washing;
  • Activated charcoal and copper chlorophyllin to sequester trimethylamine produced in the gut;
  • Antibiotics (metronidazole, amoxicillin, and neomycin) to suppress production of trimethylamine by reducing bacteria in the gut;
  • Riboflavin supplements to enhance residual FMO3 enzyme activity.
Agents/circumstances to avoid: Foods with a high content of precursors of trimethylamine or inhibitors of FMO3 enzyme activity (seafoods: fish, cephalopods, and crustaceans), eggs, offal, legumes, brassicas, and soya products; food supplements and "health" foods that contain high doses of choline and lecithin; drugs metabolized by the enzyme FMO3; circumstances that promote sweating (e.g., exercise, stress, emotional upsets).

Evaluation of relatives at risk: Biochemical testing of sibs to identify those who are affected and will benefit from management to reduce production of trimethylamine.

Genetic counseling: Primary trimethylaminuria is inherited in an autosomal recessive manner. The parents of an affected individual are obligate heterozygotes (i.e., presumed to be carriers of one FMO3 pathogenic variant based on family history). If both parents are known to be heterozygous for an FMO3 pathogenic variant, each sib of an affected individual has at conception a 25% chance of being affected, a 50% chance of being an asymptomatic carrier, and a 25% chance of being unaffected and not a carrier. Once the FMO3 pathogenic variants have been identified in an affected family member, prenatal testing for a pregnancy at increased risk and preimplantation genetic testing are possible.

Effects of the dietary supplements, activated charcoal and copper chlorophyllin, on urinary excretion of trimethylamine in Japanese trimethylaminuria patients

Trimethylaminuria (TMAU) is a metabolic disorder characterized by the inability to oxidize and convert dietary-derived trimethylamine (TMA) to trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO).The intake of dietary charcoal (total 1.5 g charcoal per day for 10 days) reduced the urinary free TMA concentration and increased the concentration of TMAO to normal values during charcoal administration. The results suggest that the daily intake of charcoal and/or copper chlorophyllin may be of significant use in improving the quality of life of individuals suffering from TMAU.

Reduction of dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in human body

The accumulation of persistent lipophilic organic pollutants like dioxins and PCBs in human body is of great concern since many of these compounds may elicit adverse health effects on humans. Lot of manner has been tested such as foods containing dietary fibers and chlorophyll, lipids (squalane etc) and anion exchange resins. From a standpoint to avoid the influence on high-risk group and high-risk life stage other than next generation, the world-wide cooperation for reducing environmental chemicals is greatly appealed.

Environmental exposure to dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls reduce levels of gonadal hormones in newborns: results from the Duisburg cohort study

Typically, testosterone reduction was more pronounced in cord serum of female and estradiol reduction in that of male babies. Reduction of hormone levels was generally more pronounced for dioxins than for indicator PCBs.

The Duisburg birth cohort study: influence of the prenatal exposure to PCDD/Fs and dioxin-like PCBs on thyroid hormone status in newborns and neurodevelopment of infants until the age of 24 months

Prenatal exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) can affect neurobehavioral development of infants and children. This effect may be mediated through disruption of thyroid hormone homeostasis. This study supports the view that the current decreased exposure to PCDD/Fs and PCBs does not impair thyroid function of newborns and neurodevelopment of infants until the age of 24 months.

Behavioral sexual dimorphism in school-age children and early developmental exposure to dioxins and PCBs: a follow-up study of the Duisburg Cohort

Given our results and the findings of previous studies, we conclude that there is sufficient evidence that these EDCs modify behavioral sexual dimorphism in children, presumably by interacting with the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis.

Attenuation of polychlorinated biphenyl sorption to charcoal by humic acids

Enhanced PCBs sorption on biochars as affected by environmental factors: Humic acid and metal cations

The results showed that the biochars had high adsorption affinity for PCBs.

Efficacy of carbonaceous materials for sorbing polychlorinated biphenyls from aqueous solution

This work demonstrated superior PCB sorption by AC as compared with the nanomaterials examined such that substantial post production modifications would be necessary for the nanomaterials to out-perform AC.

Mercury Removal from Contaminated Water by Wood-Based Biochar Depends on Natural Organic Matter and Ionic Composition

Biochars can remove potentially toxic elements, such as inorganic mercury [Hg(II)] from contaminated waters.

Effects of environmental exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls and dioxins on birth size and growth in Dutch children

Although this growth delay was described in healthy term born infants, intrauterine and postnatal growth retardation are potentially harmful to the developing human and should be avoided by reducing maternal PCB and dioxin body burden, and consequently fetal exposure to these pollutants.

Environmental exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and dioxins. Consequences for longterm neurological and cognitive development of the child lactation

These data give evidence that prenatal exposure to PCBs do have subtle negative effects on neurological and cognitive development of the child up to school-age. Human breast milk volume and fat content is adversely affected by the presently encountered PCB levels in W. Europe. Our studies showed evidence that breast feeding counteracts the adverse developmental effects of PCBs and dioxins.

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