CT: Charcoal is a fine, black powder made from wood or other natural materials by heating them in an airless environment. Charcoal used for health conditions is usually “activated” to make it a very fine powder, which increases its effectiveness. Activated charcoal can chemically attach, or adsorb, to a variety of particles and gases, which makes it ideal for removing potentially toxic substances from the digestive tract. Activated charcoal is not absorbed into the body, so it carries adsorbed substances out of the body in the feces.
S: HS – http://www.uofmhealth.org/health-library/hn-5203004#hn-5203004-uses (last access: 17 December 2014).
N: 1. charcoal (n): mid-14c., charcole, first element is either Old French charbon “charcoal,” or, on the current theory, obsolete charren “to turn” (from Old English cerran) + cole “coal,” thus, “to turn to coal.”
2. Charcoal is an impure form of graphitic carbon obtained as a residue when carbonaceous material is partially burned or heated, with limited access of air.
S: 1. OED – http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?allowed_in_frame=0&search=charcoal&searchmode=none (last access: 17 December 2014). 2. EncBrit – http://global.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/106336/charcoal (last access: 17 December 2014).