Person's hands holding charcoal

If you’ve ever dealt with excess gas and abdominal bloating, you know the discomfort—and occasional embarrassment—that accompanies an upset stomach. 

While some excessive gas and abdominal bloating is a natural byproduct of digestion, other cases may be more severe or painful. While you should always seek out medical attention in severe cases, activated charcoal can be used as a gut health supplement that helps manage symptoms associated with mild cases of gas and bloating—before they pose significant problems. 

In this guide, we’ll discuss how you can use activated charcoal to improve your digestive health.

What Causes Gas and Bloating?

Before we get into how activated charcoal can help relieve excessive gas and bloating, let’s discuss what causes gas and bloating in the first place. In short, gas and bloating are caused by the release of gas during the digestion process. 

However, if you’re suffering from continuous gas and bloating, it may be time to modify your lifestyle and/or seek medical attention.

Here are a few common causes of constant gas and bloating:

  • Food and digestion – Although all foods release gas as part of the digestion process, some foods are more gas-heavy than others. These foods include beans, lentils, meat, and dairy. While it’s safe to eat these foods, overconsumption of them may lead to increased gas and bloating. Additionally, some beverages, such as soft drinks and beer, have been shown to increase stomach pain and digestive problems.

  • Medical issues More serious cases of gas and bloating require medical attention. These conditions include intestinal diseases like Crohn's and diverticulitis, stomach bugs, food intolerances, constipation, and harmful bacteria in the colon. Again, if your gas and bloating are severe, they may be signs of a bigger medical condition and you should seek professional care.

  • Intestinal obstructions Intestinal obstructions can lead to gas and bloating, although they’re not as common as digestion or medical issues. When the intestines become obstructed, not only is gas unable to pass, but inflammation may also occur, causing bloating.

  • Excessive bacteria – As home to one of the most diverse and complex bacterial ecosystems, the colon contains many helpful bacteria. That said, the colon can occasionally become inundated with bacteria, leading to increased gas and obstructions. What’s more, sometimes harmful bacteria can enter the colon. When this happens, the body’s immune response kicks in to expel the bacteria. This response may lead to inflammation.
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    Symptoms of Gas and Bloating 

    While gas and bloating can be symptoms of other maladies, they also have symptoms of their own. Understanding these symptoms can help you identify your condition and seek the proper treatment.

    According to one study on gastrointestinal gas, the symptoms of gas and bloating can be broken down into three categories:1

  • Increased eructation Eructation, also known as “belching,” is a common byproduct of digestion. However, if you’re experiencing eructation more than normal, it may be time to treat your gaseousness.

  • Increased rectal gas – Also known as flatulence, increased rectal gas is a major symptom of gaseousness and bloating. It’s primarily caused by excessive amounts of unabsorbed carbohydrates entering the colon and the makeup of colonic bacteria. Like eructation, a little rectal gas may not be a cause for concern. However, if you’re noticing a marked increase in your rectal gas, it may be time for a treatment. 

  • Pain and distension – Pain and distension are major symptoms of gaseousness and bloating. However, an increased volume of gas within the gastrointestinal tract is not to blame. Recent studies show that pain and distension may be caused by the inability of gas to travel through the colon. Regardless of their causes, pain and distension are usually signs that you need treatment.

  • The good news is that, while these symptoms may cause pain (and maybe even some embarrassment), they can almost always be quickly reduced or eliminated with activated charcoal for gas and bloating.

    Activated Charcoal and How It Works

    Commonly used in hospitals to treat overdoses and accidental acute poisoning, activated charcoal is a substance made from several carbon-based materials. These materials include:2

    • Wood
    • Sugarcane
    • Coconut shells
    • Coal
    • Soybean hulls
    • Peat
    • Petroleum

    The chemistry involved in manufacturing activated charcoal can be complex. In short, activated charcoal is made by heating one or more of the above substances until the material’s surface area and porosity increase.

    This increased surface area and porosity enable the activated charcoal to trap harmful toxins. Once the harmful toxins are trapped by the activated charcoal, both the toxins and charcoal are unable to be absorbed into the bloodstream and eliminated as fecal matter.

    But does activated charcoal help with gas and bloating? The answer is a resounding yes!

    How Activated Charcoal Reduces Gas 

    To understand how activated charcoal can help reduce gas, it’s important to know the difference between absorption and adsorption. 

    Whereas absorption refers to the ability of one substance to be completely subsumed by another substance, adsorption refers to the ability of one substance to trap another substance on its surface. 

    Activated charcoal thus used adsorption to trap gas molecules on its surface and in its widened pores.3

    Activated charcoal’s ability to trap gas also results in less odorous flatulence. By binding sulfuric gases to its surface, activated charcoal greatly reduces unwanted smells. Additionally, activated charcoal can trap the bacteria and toxins that cause the gas. Once the activated charcoal traps the bacteria, the gas-causing agents are expelled.

    How Activated Charcoal Reduces Bloating

    Although some bloating may be related to excess gas production, bloating may also be a sign of a more serious problem: inflammation caused by harmful gut bacteria.

    According to many studies, several species of harmful bacteria can disrupt the typical colonic bacterial makeup, leading to inflammation.4 This might be one of the many signs you need a colon cleanse. Fortunately, activated charcoal can reduce this inflammation by trapping and eliminating these harmful toxins. Learn more about using activated charcoal for a stomach bug.

    Benefits of Activated Charcoal for Gas and Bloating

    As stated above, using activated charcoal to help reduce gas and bloating is useful and comes with many great benefits:

  • Safe – Although most cases of gas and bloating are relatively mild, they can occasionally be severe. Fortunately, for most people, activated charcoal is a safe way to reduce even the most severe cases of gas and bloating. When taken in the correct dosages, activated charcoal poses little to no health risks.

  • Cost-effective – Compared to other gas and bloating treatments, such as colon cleanses and probiotic supplements, activated charcoal’s relatively cheap. On average, activated charcoal costs between $5-30, and it has a long shelf life. What’s more, a little bit of activated charcoal goes a long way. For adults and teenagers, 50-100 grams is the recommended first dose.

  • Versatile – Activated charcoal has many uses. In addition to helping relieve gas and bloating, activated charcoal can help whiten teeth, alleviate constipation, provide a full body detox, filter water, promote kidney health, and lower cholesterol. Activated charcoal’s many uses make it the perfect all-around home treatment.

  • Activated Charcoal Forms

    Activated charcoal comes in several forms. These forms include:

    • Sprays
    • Powders
    • Capsules or tablets

    In general, your symptoms dictate the form you’ll need. For instance, while activated charcoal powder is typically used to treat poisoning, activated charcoal pills or tablets are used to relieve gas and bloating.

    That said, Cymbiotika Activated Charcoal’s beneficial for all your digestive needs. That’s because Cymbiotika Activated Charcoal’s packed full of natural, colon-friendly ingredients designed to detoxify your system. 

    These ingredients include:

  • Activated coconut charcoal – Coconuts are at the heart of Cymbiotika Activated Charcoal. In addition to providing many key nutrients, coconut’s full of lauric acid, an acid noted for its antibacterial properties. What’s more, coconut shells provide an extremely clean source of charcoal.

  • Organic sprouted macadamia nuts – High in fiber, healthy fats, and other essential nutrients, macadamia nuts are essential for great digestive health. Their high fiber content can help digestion to greatly reduce gas and bloating.

  • Non-GMO citric acid – Although it may not seem like a crucial ingredient, citric acid has been shown to impact gut microbe diversity.5 In addition, citric acid’s used to maintain the charcoal’s freshness and stability.

  • Cymbiotika Activated Charcoal is the best of the best when it comes to controlling gas and balancing digestive acids.

    Need diet ideas for your detox? Learn more about the different types of foods to cleanse the colon

    Relieve Gas with Cymbiotika

    Few things can ruin an afternoon, like gas and bloating. Not only do you have to deal with the embarrassment of bad odors, but you’ll also likely feel stomach pain and distension. Fortunately, there’s a safe and effective remedy designed to reduce gas and bloating—activated charcoal.

    Derived from superheated carbon, activated charcoal can get your gastrointestinal health back to where it needs to be. But why settle for just any activated charcoal when you could get the best activated charcoal on the market?

    Made from organic, plant-based materials, Cymbiotika Activated Charcoal can help treat a wide range of digestive issues—from gas and bloating to accidental overdoses and poisoning. In addition to eliminating gas, Cymbiotika’s activated charcoal can also help with mold, radiation, and pesticide exposure, as well as pharmaceutical residues and Candida overgrowth. 

    Empower yourself and your digestive system with Cymbiotika. We use only the most high-quality ingredients to ensure your body is getting what it needs (and deserves) to thrive.


    1. U.S. National Library of Medicine. Gastrointestinal Gas.
    2. ScienceDirect. Activated Charcoal.
    3. U.S. National Library of Medicine. Gas and Bloating.
    4. U.S. National Library of Medicine. The Role of Gut Microbiota in Intestinal Inflammation with Respect to Diet and Extrinsic Stressors.
    5. U.S. National Library of Medicine. The Intestinal Fate of Citrus Flavanones and Their Effects on Gastrointestinal Health

    by Isaac Otero / Dec 20, 2021