How to Choose a Natural Toothpaste

brushing-teethPicking a toothpaste can be very confusing. With promises of minty fresh breath, stronger enamel and whiter teeth, the toothpaste industry has become very competitive. Conventional toothpastes usually contain many chemicals, from fluoride and triclosan to sodium laureth sulphate and artificial sweeteners. One segment of this industry that is growing is natural toothpaste.

Here are the most common chemicals to AVOID in toothpastes:

1. Fluoride. The chemical most commonly found in toothpaste is sodium fluoride (also just labeled as fluoride). Continue reading “How to Choose a Natural Toothpaste”

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Fluoride Study Linked to Thyroid Problems

glass-of-waterA recent study out of England has found a link between the amount of fluoride in public drinking water and a rise in incidence of hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid). The study, published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, compared 2012 national data on levels of fluoride in drinking water to trends for hypothyroidism as diagnosed by family physicians across England.

The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland near the base of the neck that produces hormones. Thyroid hormones control the rate of many body activities, including how fast calories are burned and how fast the heart beats. If the thyroid gland isn’t active enough, it does not make enough thyroid hormone to meet the body’s needs.

The research found that in areas where tap water fluoride levels exceeded 0.3 milligrams per liter, the risk for having an underactive thyroid rose by 30%. The study, led by Stephen Peckham of the University of Kent in Canterbury, England found that hypothyroidism rates were nearly double in urbanized regions that had fluoridated tap water, compared with regions that did not. Continue reading “Fluoride Study Linked to Thyroid Problems”

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Fluoride Lowers Children’s IQ

A new study pre-published in Environmental Health Perspectives, a publication of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, shows that exposure to fluoride may lower children’s intelligence. Fluoride is added to 70% of U.S. public drinking water supplies.

More than 500 children aged 8 to 13 from two different towns were studied and tested. One city had fluoridated water, and the other did not.

The results showed that approximately 28% of the children in the low-fluoride area scored as bright, normal or higher intelligence compared to only 8% in the high-fluoride area. In the high-fluoride city, 15% had scores indicating mental retardation, as compared to only 6% in the low-fluoride city.

Fluoride has also been a concern because of fluorosis, a dental condition that can result from consuming too much of the mineral fluoride. It mostly results in tiny white flecks or streaks on teeth. In extreme cases, it causes discoloration and pitting of the tooth enamel. This affects children under the age of 8.

One way to avoid too much fluoride is to read your toothpaste label and limit the amount of toothpaste used by kids under 6. Continue reading “Fluoride Lowers Children’s IQ”

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