You might not think twice about the chemicals in your cosmetics, in the way you would worry about absorbing chemicals from food, but that’s what happens every time you brush your teeth.
And with the ever increasing knowledge about the harm that some of these chemicals are doing, it certainly is something to worry about.
Toothpaste comes under the umbrella term of the ‘cosmetic industry’ which is actually the least regulated industries in the U.S.
Packaging can be very deceptive, sticking the word ‘natural’ on a box means nothing and more often than not what’s in the box is far from natural.
Here is a list of the things you really need to look out for that may be hiding in your toothpaste:
Artificial colors: Made from petroleum, these artificial colors are contaminated with carcinogens and can also contain heavy metals, such as lead, mercury, and arsenic.
Carrageenan: This additive is linked to intestinal inflammation and cancer. According to Cornucopia, “there is no restriction on the amount of carcinogenic poligeenan in the grade of carrageenan used in toothpastes”.
DEA (diethanolamine): This foaming agent interacts with other ingredients in toothpaste to form nitrosamines, which are strongly linked to cancer in humans.
Formaldehyde-Releasing Preservatives: There is a long list of toothpaste preservatives that release small amounts of formaldehyde right into your mouth. This carcinogen is easily absorbed through the mucosal lining of the mouth. The US. has no restrictions on formaldehyde unlike Canada or Europe, there is no checks made to see how much formaldehyde products contain. Preservatives to watch out for on the label: DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, polyoxymethylene urea, methenamine, quaternium-15, sodium hydroxymethylglycinate, 2-bromo-2-nitropropane-1,3-diol (Bromopol), 5-bromo-5-nitro-1,3 dioxane (Bronidox), and glyoxal.
GMOs: Unless it is certified organic or non-GMO verified, you might be supporting Monsanto with your toothpaste. GMO ingredients to look out for and the GMO crops they are usually derived from: Glycerin (GMO soy, cotton, or canola oil), Citric Acid (GMO sugar), Xanthan Gum (GMO sugar), Xylitol (GMO corn), and Lecithin (GMO soy).
PEGs (polyethylene glycols) and Propylene Glycol: These ingredients help the other dangerous ingredients penetrate the skin and get into the bloodstream exposing you to more toxins.
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES): These are known to break down the protective lining in the mouth. SLES is also a known carcinogen.
Popular Toothpaste brands to avoid all costs:
- Arm and Hammer
- Plus White Whitening
Watch out for some “natural” toothpastes too…
Desert Essence, Tom’s of Maine, Jason, Honest, Spry, Nature’s Gate and Kiss My Face toothpastes did not rank well at all… and they are sold in natural food markets everywhere. Some of these toothpastes contain carrageenan, foaming agents, possible toxic contaminants or potential GMOs.