Life Food & Drink

Monday 20 May 2019

The new 'superfood' drink? Shot with activated charcoal, which claims to detox the body, hits Irish shelves

Dan and Emily Watson who make Bumblezest
Dan and Emily Watson who make Bumblezest
Geraldine Gittens

Geraldine Gittens

A new shot containing activated charcoal, which claims to detox the body, has hit Irish shelves.

The Bumblezest shot contains charcoal, apple cider vinegar, and milk thistle, and is said to remove toxins, aid digestion, and regenerate liver cells.

Dan Watson (38), who developed his own recipes for Bumblezest when he quit his job in the property sector in the UK, said the shot drink is the first on the market to contain activated charcoal.

“Activated charcoal has been around for a little bit, but more in cakes and capsules. There are other drinks on the market with charcoal but I’m pretty sure that we’re the first shot.”

“I’ve had the activated charcoal drink maybe two or three times a week. It’s good for purifying the liver; it helps carry out toxins [out of the body]. Toxins stick to the charcoal; you can either have it before or after indulging on a big night. But any day is a good time to drink it to detox. It’s a natural cleanser.”

In hospital settings, activated charcoal (charcoal that has been treated so that it is pure carbon) is sometimes given to treat someone who has been poisoned. The charcoal binds to the poison and stops it from being further absorbed into the blood, the HSE says.

Health professionals caution against people taking activated charcoal if you’re on medication, and some say there is little evidence to suggest activated charcoal is good for detoxing.

But others extol the virtues of activated charcoal for tummy troubles, hangovers or trapped wind. 

Husband and wife team Dan and Emily Watson who make the Bumblezest shot drinks.
Husband and wife team Dan and Emily Watson who make the Bumblezest shot drinks.

Mr Watson said: “I would say we normally recommend drinking it about half an hour before consuming any foods. If you consume it with food, you won’t benefit from absorbing all the nutrients.”

“Charcoal definitely helps with bloating or trapped wind or if you’re feeling a bit full. Because it’s in the shot with the apple cider vinegar, alcohol helps also with that. There’s a lot of cinnamon and there’s also cayenne pepper in that drink, so it’s difficult to know which is helping to get you slimmer and fitter.”

A 90-mililitre drink is €3.70 and the drink is currently available in health shops like Nourish, The Health Store and some independent shops.

One important ethos of the Bumblezest company is that it is carbon neutral, Mr Watson added.

“It’s really, really important to us. We hate plastic. We don’t use any plastic. Our caps are aluminium, our bottles are glass, which costs more money which may be reflected in the price.”

“We don’t ship unnecessary water [because the drinks are shots].”

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