An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but we’re not so sure if the same logic applies to the daily brushing of your pearly whites. Good oral hygiene is imperative, but no so much when your brushing routine is laced with abrasives and toxic chemicals. Before you assume we aren’t referring to your brand of Toothpaste, you may wanna grab your tube and compare the ingredients list. Does your brand contain any of these?
Used in toothpastes to strengthen enamel, fluoride is considered toxic when ingested in high levels and is a controversial additive in water. The addition of fluoride to toothpaste prompted manufacturers in the U.S. to have warning labels required by the FDA stating: “WARNING: Keep out of reach of children under 6 years of age. If you accidentally swallow more than used for brushing, seek professional help or contact a poison control center immediately.” Watch An Inconvenient Tooth, a fluoride documentary.
Enough said. But, for those of you who still consume it, the sweetening agent in Sweet N ‘Low is saccharin, which has been linked to bladder cancer. Splenda (sucralose) is a chlorocarbon and Equal (aspartame) is an excitotoxin. These are three chemicals that offer absolutely no health benefit to the body and over time will potentially lead to health problems. Additionally, brain tumors and lymphoma in rodents have been linked to consumption of high amounts of the sweetener.
3.) SODIUM LAUREL SULFATE (SLS)
In the cleaning industry, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is used to clean garage floors. SLS is a drying agent which has a foaming effect that can be found in some toothpaste. It is known to cause microscopic tears in mouths that can lead to canker sores. Look for SLS-free toothpastes which use glycyrrhizin, derived from licorice root, to lather and disperse ingredients.
Although extracted from red seaweeds (sounds healthy in theory) dozens of scientific, peer-reviewed studies used food-grade carrageenan and found exposure to carrageenan causes gastrointestinal inflammation, ulcerations, lesions and even colon cancer in laboratory animals). Also, the American Diabetes Association links the consumption to insulin resistance and glucose intolerance in mice. Since we adhere to the precautionary principle, we advise avoiding this as does the Cornucopia Institute based on numerous scientific studies.
5.) PROPYLENE GLYCOL
Can you say anti-freeze? Yes, people, this is a solvent that is the active component in some anti-freezes. It’s a petroleum based chemical that is used to soften cosmetic products and is used in a plethora of personal care products. In large quantities, studies have shown that it can cause damage to the central nervous system, liver and heart. The same stuff used to make antifreeze does not belong in your mouth. Period.
Recommended Toothpaste Brands
Remember, not all natural brands even make the cut. In fact, many of the Tom’s of Maine brands contain fluoride and Tom’s and Trader Joe’s fluoride-free versions contain carageenan. A few of our recommendations here at the Healthy Home Dream Team® include:
- Nature’s Gate
- Earthpaste (clay-based)
- Weleda Oral Care
- Kiss My Face
- Neem Toothpaste
- DIY – make your own using this simple recipe!
Got a favorite and trusted brand? Please share it below with us in the comments section!