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Charcoal Food

October 26, 2018

Charcoal Food

October 26, 2018

Black burger buns, black ice cream and cones, black sushi, black smoothies, black pasta… and the list goes on and on. The hyper trend is ubiquitous: charcoal-coloured food. From foodlovers to foodbloggers: all show their passion for black food on instagram and friends.

Apart from its fancy all black look – what are the upsides and downsides of charcoal-enriched food? Well, let’s start with a little checkup to find out more…

What is charcoal?

Basically, charcoal is nothing more than pressed and burnt organic matter: plants, fruit kernels, wood, peat and similar material. It is burnt with very little oxygen supply, so it doesn’t fully burn down to ashes. The resulting burnt coal is a porous and very light material, which means it contains a lot of air inside – just like the holes in cheese. To give the charcoal its ability to absorb pollutants and other substances it is finally treated with extremely hot steam comprised of water, air and carbon dioxid. Thanks to its absorbent properties it is classically used in water filters and air conditioning systems.

Ok, so much for the science part.

Charcoal in food

The use of charcoal for medicinal purposes dates back to ancient times. The Old Greeks and Egyptians already knew about the potential of charcoal effectively curing belly aches and sickness. Today, charcoal pills have become a common feature in cosmetics or even emergency detox-treatments. Consequently, we can be sure that charcoal-enriched food has no harming effect on our health. BUT – and here it comes – it does not only absorb pollutants and harmful substances. It generally absorbs pretty much every substance – consequently the ‚good’ ones including nutrients such as minerals and vitamines, too! Eating charcoal-enriched food does not hurt you in general. However, consuming too much of it will ruin a balanced and healthy nutrition. In the worst case your body might react to high charcoal intake with constipation.

Conclusion: black burger buns and black ice cream look great on instagram pictures and they are a supercool eye-catcher. If you keep it on a low level, making charcoal food the exception rather than a frequent snack, your body won’t mind. Definitely always take a picture when enjoying charcoal-enriched food…

Image by iStock/laperia_foto

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