Natural personal care products. What we use on our body day to day is EQUALLY IMPORTANT, IF NOT MORE IMPORTANT, as the source of water we hydrate with everyday and as the foods we choose to enjoy everyday.
Most unfortunately, conventional personal care products of all types are LOADED my past personal care products of choice over to cleaner, more health-benefiting sources, beginning with those I use most frequently.
So, let’s talk about TOOTHPASTE!
The reason I blog today about the natural and oh-so-CANADIAN(!) toothpaste I have chosen to invest in, is because toothpastes are victims of chemical ingredients, too.
The Green Beaver Company, out of Hawkesbury, Ontario, produces an array of natural toothpaste flavors that aim to provide a far cleaner ingredient list than your typical conventional toothpaste.
I was really impressed upon visiting this company’s website, as I researched to compose this post. I came upon an “Ingredient Glossary”, explaining the purpose/function of the ingredients included in their various products. As a consumer and educator, it is important for me to both know and understand the purpose and function of each ingredient in a day in age when this information is not always readily available, so this consumer tool helped a great deal!
Which makes you wonder WHY these ingredient items are necessary in the first place?!
Let me debrief those chemicals that fail to appear on the ingredient list, and why they are harmful to you, using both details provided on the website and other sources:
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)
- Exists to thicken toothpaste, so that it may foam up and lather like soap (it’s essentially detergent!)
- Lather seems to be reassuring to people, allowing them to feel like they’ve cleaned really well
- Foaming agents degenerate the lining of the mouth
- While fluoride is known to strengthen teeth, it does nothing to clean the teeth
- A synthetic, antibacterial ingredient
- The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registers triclosan as a pesticide, posing risks to both human health and that of the environment
- A carcinogenic (cancer-causing) substance
- May contribute to antibiotic resistance (when antibiotic use is necessary)
- Contributes to the disruption of hormones and immune function
- A thickening agent that is a known inflammatory agent in the body
- Linked to intestinal inflammation and cancer
- Genetically modified organisms have altered DNA
- The body does not recognize such organisms
- Their safety have not yet been proven, therefore their consumption have unpredictable consequences
Artificial Flavours and Dyes
- Made from petroleum
- Contaminated with carcinogens
- Known to contain heavy metals (i.e. lead, mercury and arsenic), which accumulate in and are toxic to the body
- Known to contribute to skin irritations and contact dermatitis (skin rash)
Full Ingredient List:
Calcium Carbonate - a mild abrasive that safely removes plaque while gently polishing away surface stains; a natural, mineral whitener
Water – purified water (by reverse osmosis) to ensure the removal of chlorine and other impurities
Sorbitol – contributes moisturizing properties, providing clarity and transparency to the toothpaste’s consistency
Glycerin – derived from coconut oil and/or sunflower oil; a humectant (exists to prevent the toothpaste from drying out/keeps it moist)
Hydrated Silica – a mild abrasive; contributes to the toothpaste’s gel-like consistency; removes plaque, along with calcium carbonate; a natural, mineral whitener
Mentha Viridis (Spearmint) Leaf Oil – derived from the Spearmint plant; contributes a natural scent as a breath freshener; has a cooling effect
Xylitol – extracted from North American birch and other hardwood trees; contributes a slightly sweet flavour
Citrus – contributes a natural scent as a breath freshener; is conditioning for the skin
Medica Limonum (Lemon) Extract – lemon essential oil; a natural, fresh scent and breath freshener; a whitening and antibacterial agent
Xantham Gum – produced by the fermentation of cane sugar; a thickening and stabilizing agent
Coco-Glucoside – derived from coconut oil and GMO-free corn; a mild foamer and cleanser
Calcium Ascorbate – derived from the salts of ascorbic acid (Vitamin C); lightens discoloration of the teeth; has antioxidant properties, including resistance to infection and healing of inflammation
Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree Leaf Oil) – essential oil from the leaves of the tea tree bush; a natural, herbal scent that assists with killing the bacteria responsible for causing tartar and plaque
Sensitive (for sensitive teeth/gums)
This company produces an array of personal care products, including:
Foaming Hand Soap
Castile Liquid Soap
Sunflower Soap Bars
Boreal Dry Skin Therapy (body lotion, lip balm and face cream)
Junior Beaver (shampoo, bath bubbles and conditioning detangler for children)
There will always be a “Good, Better, Best” continuum with any product choice, whether it be a source of water, source of food, or ingredient list on a personal care product. For me, this was certainly a step in the right direction! A step in the right direction is all that matters. It's nice to pick up a product you use so frequently, without hesitation, knowing there's nothing seriously detrimental to your health with long-term use.
I’d love to know which holistic/natural dental product brands you may have discovered for yourself, at this point!