There might be a serious downside to those awesome charcoal treats if you take birth control

You’ve probably seen the trend of blacker-than-black tasty treats taking Instagram by storm lately. There are all kinds of food and drinks concocted with activated charcoal, the secret ingredient that gives that dark coloring. Activated charcoal can be detoxifying, so it’s not actually bad for you, but if you take birth control pills, you might want to think twice before trying it.

Eater recently did a breakdown of the safety risks associated with eating activated charcoal products. It’s super detailed and kind of cool, so if you’ve got any interest in food science, definitely take a look!

But the part that stood out to us the most is the little detail that activated charcoal might make your birth control less effective.

Seems like a very important thing to know before indulging in that black ice cream cone!

Dr. Patricia Raymond, a gastroenterologist, specifically mentioned birth control and charcoal when talking to Women’s Health.

"...But if you’re drinking it and you also are on any meds, even birth control pills, the charcoal is likely to absorb the drugs. So you risk having them become ineffective.

How worried should you be about trying charcoal-based treats? For most people, it’s not actually that risky if you’re consuming very minimal quantities. But it’s still a potential risk, and definitely something to keep in mind. Eater suggests waiting a few hours after eating a tasty black cone before taking any meds. And if you’re taking any medication and are concerned about your newly minted charcoal latte addiction, talk to your doctor!