"He causeth the grass to grow for food, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth; And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth a man's heart." ~Psalm 104: 14-15


Toxic as ...toothpaste? Would I eat that?

Toxic as toothpaste? OR Would I eat that?
Article written Dec. 17, 2011

[I've been sitting on this article for a while now, and in light of Modern Alternative Mama's post today, The Seven Myths of Modern Dentistry, I thought it fitting to put it up this evening.]

Some things are edible, some things taste bad but we (might) eat them because they're "supposed to be good for you," (like cooked spinach or raw garlic) and some are, well, yummy (think chocolate).  But other things are just plain toxic. Like lead and arsenic, right?

So, things are either good for you, or bad for you. Aren't they?  Well, there's also this third category; something like "it's safe, but only in small quantities” (i.e. Pesticides: "Mancozeb is a fairly common garden fungicide, and the U.S. EPA regards it as safe, but only in small quantities and with proper protective gear and usage." Seriously now, I would Not want to eat that!)

But to the point; one such cautious item is fluoride. Fluoride-which is found in common toothpaste. Oh yes. (Take a look at this graph I found.) It's the reason we're so expressly told to observe small children while they brush and that if they swallow more than the recommended "pea size amount" they really could suffer and/or die!

"It is now known that fluoride's "Probably Toxic Dose" which "should trigger therapeutic intervention and hospitilization -- is 5 mg *per kg of bodyweight." This means that many dental products found at home contain more than enough fluoride to kill or seriously harm a small child if ingested."  (According to: http://www.fluoridation.com/poison.html *emphasis mine, wording slightly modified for clarity; see link or exact and more detailed quote.) 

(This is starting to remind me of a comic I recently shared with my little brother. It has some contemporary kids talking about how crazy it was that people in China used to deform their feet just for fashion...then you see several girls go by with clunky, strappy, monstrous shoes-which appear to be doing the very thing they mocked in another culture/time. I mean, people look back on the Egyptians* and Victorians and think how precarious they were to include such toxic things as arsenic and lead in their cosmetics-and all for the sake of looks.)

(*July 17, 2012 I just did a search and found this article, addressing several of these issues. "But while their research provides a fascinating insight into an ancient culture, the scientists say the makeup is not something that should be used today. Dr. Amatore said that the toxicity of lead compounds overshadowed the benefits and that there had been many documented cases of poisoning as a result of lead in paints and plumbing in the 20th century." Then the article continues with only an opinion--on something as serious as life and health.)

According to fluoridealert.org:
"The most common contaminant found with the captured fluoride acid (hydrofluosilicic acid) is arsenic."  "Arsenic, which has since been classified as a Class 1 human carcinogen, is now known to cause cancer of the skin, and cancer of the internal organs, particularly the lung and bladder."  "A study from Finland (Kurttio, et al, 1999) found that people drinking water with 0.1 to 0.5 parts per billion arsenic had a 50% greater risk of developing bladder cancer than people drinking water with less than 0.1 ppb." 

So, arsenic--wait, that's on the "it's just plain toxic" list, isn't it?  I thought so. So, why are we ok with putting this stuff (found in florid toothpaste) in our mouths (and even, ingesting it in municipal water) every day???

I'm not. I'm not fine with this. This is why I’ve stopped using fluoride toothpaste as a daily habit. (And I won’t even get into the subject of water.) First I did a lot of reading (still need to do much more), then made my own toothpaste. I don't want to slowly poison myself-but I don't want my teeth to rot either, so I read and read. And when I was doing all this research, I saw that some dentists believe fluoride really isn't doing all it’s supposedly doing for teeth, after all. Hmm, hmm, hmm. There are people who argue extensively on both sides. I just decided not to use it so much. 

Instead, for now, I'm using some homemade toothpaste (check my recipe, click here), or sometimes just some baking soda with peppermint oil.  Because I ask myself: "Would I eat that?"

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