Ever wonder about the warnings on a toothpaste label? For instance, why if swallowing more than used for brushing should you contact a poison control center, why should children under 12 be instructed to minimize swallowing, why should it be kept out of reach of children under 6 and why should they not even use it? Hmmm...sounds like it could be toxic to me. What about fluoride...did you know it's completely unecessary and harmful to our health? In my own research I've learned enough to know I don't want it in my toothpaste, used in my dental cleanings and definitely not added to my drinking water! The last time I had a dental cleaning with fluoride my thyroid function went way down.
FLUORIDE: chemical toxin, causes cancer, lowers IQ-especially in children, impairs thyroid function and neurological function, accumulates in bones causing skeletal fluorosis and bone fractures, actually increases tooth decay and leads to fluorosis (white and brown spots on your teeth, typically due to ingesting too much fluoride during your developing years, from birth to about 8 years of age.)
*further reading: The Fluoride Deception.
Toothpaste also contains a vast array of other harmful ingredients:
triclosan- an endocrine disruptor, advancing the age of puberty by suppressing thyroid hormones; causes fetal death in animals; strong skin irritant; environmental toxin
artificial and natural flavors-potentially carcinogenic
propylene glycol-shown to be toxic in large doses
soium benzoate-preservative shown to cause damage to nervous system and brain and may encourage hyperactivity or decreased intellect in susceptible children; causes cancer. (check your food labels...it's in everything!)
artificial color-hyperactivity, cancer...etc. etc. etc.-avoid always
sodium lauryl sulfate-foaming agent, skin and eye irritant; in toothpaste may cause canker sores
xylitol-sweetener made from corn; bloating and diarrhea can result when ingesting high amounts
glycerin-sticks to teeth and inhibits remineralization, contributing to cavity formation!
Even 'natural' toothpastes contain many of these undesirable ingredients. When it comes to ingredients and potential harm I tend to take the 'better safe than sorry' approach. If there's even a chance that something could harm my family and I, I'm more than happy to use the homemade version thrown together in my humble kitchen...
Humble Kitchen Toothpaste:
1/4 C Calcium Carbonate
1/4 C Baking Soda (aluminum-free)
1 T Terramin minerals (optional)
14 tsp Himalayan Salt
30-40 drops organic Peppermint Essential Oil or other mint
1/4 C +/- organic Coconut Oil
organic liquid stevia to taste
*Mix all dry ingredients. Add enough coconut oil to make a paste. If temperatures are cold the oil will solidify, but I then just scoop a finger-full out and onto my toothbrush. I purchased Calcium Carbonate (chalk) on Amazon, but it's not necessary...your paste would just taste a little salty without it.
It's important to note that this recipe does not need to be exact. You could use only baking soda and be better off than using store-bought toothpaste and have better results! You might mix some soda and salt with coconut oil and peppermint, or add a few drops of tea tree oil, or use coconut oil and peppermint alone...come up with your own recipe based on your preferences.
Coconut oil is antimicrobial, antibacterial and able to prevent Streptococcus mutans, an acid-producing bacterium that is a common inhabitant of the mouth and a major cause of tooth decay, from binding to and damaging tooth enamel. It is anti-candida and extremely effective at attacking thrush, a yeast (fungal) infection of the mouth.
Adding Terramin, an organic cleansing clay, helps to re-mineralize and detoxify. This is the tan powder in the photo-without it your toothpaste would be white.
My son loves his 'candy cane' toothpaste and my teeth have never felt more clean!
Update: a different post/recipe for toothpaste from the Radiant Life Blog