While we're on the topic of chemicals and pesticides, maybe it’s time to look closer at a product you use every morning and night. Is it time to switch your toothpaste?!
It’s been said that we will ingest more than 20 gallons of toothpaste during our lifetime even if you don't swallow it! That is a whole lot of minty freshness, and as it turns out, maybe a whole lot of toxins, and did you know the mouth is one of the most absorbent parts of the body! Basically, you're allowing whatever is in your toothpaste to go directly into your bloodstream, and once you learn about the chemicals you've been ingesting, I'm sure you'll want to look again!
Check your toothpaste for these ingredients, and think about switching if it contains any:
Fluoride (very important for young children to avoid this one!)
- Fluoride itself is highly toxic and when it accumulates in your body can lead to skeletal fluorosis, bone cancer, and thyroid disorders. New research links it to type 2 diabetes.
Saccharin/Aspartame (or other artificial sweeteners)
- 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.
Your mouth contains an ecosystem of more than 700 species of “good” and “bad” bacteria that live in a delicate balance. Throw in a bacteria “nuke” like triclosan, and you disrupt this delicate balance through an indiscriminate kill of both good and bad bacteria. This disruption and imbalance of the flora in your mouth can cause bad breath and dry mouth, as well as impact your body’s natural ability to build resistance to disease and infection.
- These foaming agents break down the protective lining in the mouth. 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.
These ingredients make it easier for the other chemicals in toothpaste to penetrate the skin and get into your bloodstream, exposing you to more toxins.
Many ‘natural’ toothpaste options won’t include the aforementioned list, but it's also important to remember that anyone can slap "natural" on their packaging without being checked. If you go natural, you may want to make sure your new pearly-white shiner doesn’t contain Carrageenan. This controversial ingredient, currently allowed in certified organic products (yikes!) can potentially cause inflammation and even tumors! According to Cornucopia, “there is no restriction on the amount of carcinogenic poligeenan in the grade of carrageenan used in toothpastes”.
Check out EWG’s Skin Deep Database to help you pick out safe products!
Popular Toothpaste brands to avoid all costs:
These toothpastes are filled with several of the toxic ingredients listed above:
- Arm and Hammer
- Plus White Whitening
If you have friends and family who brush their teeth with carcinogens, please share this post with them!