Charcoal powder in your water: what's the deal?

Deena recently was in Los Angeles with her daughters, and while they were out at breakfast the waiter asked them if they wanted charcoal in their ice water. He promised it was safe and detoxifying, so they went for it. But is it raelly good for us?

America's Holistic Heart Doctor Joel Kahn joined us on The Nine with some insight.

"Charcoal is a natural product that likes to absorb bad stuff and get it out of our body," Dr. Kahn says simply. You can find charcoal in soaps, toothpastes, deodarants and face masks now.

Dr. Kahn warns that charcoal binds to anything, so if you take a prescription drugs and then drink your charcoal after, you might not get the full effects of the drug. Dr. Kahn doesn't recommend drinking it specifically with a meal, though, for that very reason. It can absorb some of the healthy nutrients that are in your meal.

"Otherwise, it's in the healthy spectrum of things you can do in a dirty world," he says, and he recommends drinking it in between meals. He says about a half a teaspoon is what you need to mix in, and it hardly has any flavor to it. It may be a bit gritty, though.

"I'm all for these skin products, toothpaste, body products because of their known ability to actually pull those little bacteria out of our skin and make us glow on the outside," he adds.

One more bonus charcoal tip -- it's a great hangover cure.

"If you have a hangover and you start pounding down charcoal, it will absort the alcohol in your G.I. tract and maybe even pull it out of your body," he adds. "It's a great way to recover from a hangover."