What's in your toothpaste
Have you ever wondered what's really in your toothpaste? This question lead me to do some research and eventually add tooth powder to my brand. We all want to keep brushing our teeth and have beautiful smiles but unfortunately all cosmetics and personal care products like toothpaste remain essentially unregulated, something the FDA readily admits:
"Firms and individuals who market cosmetics have a legal responsibility to make sure their products and ingredients … are safe under labeled and customary conditions for use and that they are properly labeled. Under U.S. law, cosmetics products and ingredients do not need FDA approval before they go on the market. The one exception is color additives, … which must be approved for their intended use."
Here is a break down of some of the ingredients found in most toothpaste even some that are labeled natural.
Inactive Ingredients: Glycerin , Hydrated Silica , Sodium Hexametaphosphate , Propylene Glycol , PEG-6 , Water , Zinc Lactate, Trisodium Phosphate , Flavor, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate , Polyethylene, Sodium Gluconate , Carrageenan , Sodium Saccharin, Xanthan Gum , Titanium Dioxide , Red 40 Aluminum Lake
Fluoride: Is a dangerous chemical poison that is a by product of the fertilizer industry. This toxic poison can cause fluorosis, a discoloring of the teeth and breakdown of enamel. Big manufacturing companies have to pay to dispose of fluoride but instead they sell it to the government to put into the drinking water. We have been conned into believing fluoride helps our teeth but really it degrades them and leaches mineral out of our bodies. Many countries in Europe ban fluoride because of it's toxic health effects such as cancer, hypo-thyroidism and Alzheimer's disease. I have even read that it has a mind numbing effect on populations so it increases complacency about important issues like fluoride in our water and personal care products! Be sure to read up more about fluoride effects yourselves.
Polyethylene: Is the most common ingredient in plastic. Why is that in toothpaste?
Carageenan: starts out as an innocent seaweed used historically in Ireland and Asia in home kitchens but now it is highly processed with high heats and acidic chemicals creating a dangerous product. Processed and degraded carrageenan causes gut irritation and cancer in animal experiments. The World Health Organization states that is not safe for use in baby formula. It is used as a thickener in many foods (dairy products and milk replacements) and may cause many people to have allergic reactions. The high-profile doctor of integrative medicine, Andrew Weil implicates carrageenan in both colon cancer and inflammatory bowel disease; he advises everyone to avoid it. If you avoid processed foods and unnatural personal care products it should be easy to steer clear of this thickener, but always read your labels checking for carageenan.
Sugar: is common toothpaste ingredient often called maltodextrin which is easily digestible because it is absorbed rapidly as glucose. Isn't sugar in toothpaste contrary to the goal?
Saccharin: is a highly processed sugar substitute that has been used for a long time. It has a controversial history and has been linked to many health problems. It has been declared safe and unsafe many times by different agencies like the FDA and EPA. It was on California's list of chemicals known to the state to cause cancer for the purposes of Proposition 65 until 2001. Until these agencies make up their minds I think it is good to avoid this fake sweetener.
Sodium Laureth Sulfate: is a detergent that can be linked to cancer, developmental and reproductive problems. It can also cause mouth ulcers and skin and eye irritation.
Propylene Glycol: is used to clean up oil spills and in anti-freeze. Seems like over kill for teeth cleaning...
Triclosan: is an antibacterial agent that is commonly used in toothpaste which has been shown to inhibit thyroid function.
Artificial colors: can cause ADD and ADHD type symptoms.
Xanthan Gum: is a thickener derived from a bacteria that grows on corn and wheat which can affect people with food sensitivities.