Activated charcoal is a medicinal form of charcoal that has the capacity to absorb whatever molecules it encounters. The simple measure of supplying charcoal to the digestive tract not only accomplishes its advertised digestive intent of absorbing gas and toxins there, but it appears to aid detoxification anywhere in the body. Presumably, the reduction of toxins accomplished by the short term use of activated charcoal takes some of the pressure off the whole detoxification system by diminishing the burden of the gut. Activated charcoal is indiscriminate in what it absorbs. Therefore it should not be taken with food or medicines as it would absorb them, too, and it should not be taken for long periods of time. It is, however, good for whatever ails you in the short term.
Alkaline salts, sold in the US as Alka Seltzer without aspirin, contain only sodium and potassium bicarbonate; it is one step up from baking soda, which is just sodium bicarbonate and will do in a pinch.Healthy people can take an these salts or a half teaspoon of baking soda in a glass of water when they are feeling very hungry and irritable, have premenstrual syndrome or a hangover, or are coming down with a cold, and they will almost certainly feel better. It is best not to do so on a very full stomach or if the kidneys or lungs don't work well. When just about anything goes wrong with the body there is a transient tendency to become acidic, as it does from our daily metabolic fire, and by sending some alkali through the system, the body has a chance to recover balance.