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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Homemade Toothpaste with Xylitol and Coconut Oil

For awhile I have been saying that I would make our homemade toothpaste. Honestly, I knew that I needed to make our own. Or to at least find a healthier option than regular toothpaste. However, I also wanted the toothpaste to work. I know it is silly of me, but I have always been proud of my teeth. My parents taught me to take care of my teeth. They got braces for me so that I would have a straight strong beautiful smile. I was worried that if I just switched to any homemade toothpaste recipe that it would not be good enough to help maintain the health of my and my family's' teeth and gums. I also wanted the recipe to not have anything in it that my children shouldn't use. So I took my time with some research, speaking with the Dentist, and other people who made homemade toothpaste to make sure that I would be very happy with our homemade toothpaste recipe. I am so glad I did all this, because I am very happy with our new toothpaste. Another plus is that it is so simple!


I learned a lot as I was learning what I wanted and did not want in my own toothpaste. When I went in for my dentist appointment I told him that I was going to be making a homemade toothpaste and asked him what he thought. He told me that he has seen baking soda in several home made toothpaste recipes for everyday use, but that he only recommends someone brushing their teeth with baking soda no more than twice a week. Baking soda is used as an abrasive to whiten and clean teeth. Also during my research I learned that regular store-bought toothpaste is made up of abrasives by fifty percent on average. Abrasives are hard on teeth because the slowly chip away at the enamel. When the abrasive lightly chip at the enamel it is called polishing. When using regular toothpaste I always loved getting the whitening toothpaste. I didn't know that this was the worst type to get because there are more abrasives in it and it is harder on your teeth. If you use a whitening toothpaste, you shouldn't use it very long because it regularly polishes your teeth. So with this new knowledge, I knew that I didn't want to use baking soda or other abrasives, such as clay, in my toothpaste.

Also, most people don't know that your teeth get cleaned and more plaque is removed from the manual action of brushing your teeth rather than what is in your toothpaste. Therefore it is very important that you brush your teeth correctly in a circular motion over each tooth. Also flossing helps remove the plaque, and other particles, from between the teeth.

There are also other things in regular store-bought toothpaste. There are surfactants in toothpaste. One of the most common is sodium lauryl sulfate, SLS. Now, I have heard some good debates for and against this product. However, I have not done my own research as of yet. So I am keeping my opinions on SLS to myself for the time being. But I have read that SLS is what alters the taste of food after brushing your teeth. I have never really like that fact in particular, so I did not want this product in my toothpaste for that reason alone. A natural surfactant is soap when it is made from all natural products. The soap when it foams as you brush breaks the surface tension to have a more thorough cleaning. I have seen several recipes that call for Castile Soap in their recipes. You may choose or not choose to use soap in your homemade toothpaste. The recipe I am sharing with you today I am choosing not to use it. However, I do want to try a few more recipes in the future that I have been thinking up just for fun.

Flavors are another ingredient often used in toothpaste. There are lots of different types of flavors, however the most common are ones like peppermint, spearmint, and wintergreen. A common ingredient in some homemade toothpaste is cinnamon. I read that cinnamon in toothpaste has been reported to cause plasma cell gingivitis. I didn't know that. Who knew learning about toothpaste ingredients would be interesting?

A big debate is whether Fluoride should or should not be in toothpaste. From my research I have learned that Fluoride is something that has the natural compound Fluorine mixed with it. Basically it is an element and the compound Fluorine mingled to make Fluoride. Fluorine is found is the crust of the earth, the ocean, animals, plants, and many other natural things in our life. However, Fluorine is toxic. It depends on each persons body weight and age on how much they can intake daily. If one overdoses on Fluorine/Fluoride then it is toxic to the body.  The average adequate intake daily depending on age and weight is 0.01 to 3mg daily for the health of your teeth. However, overall intake should not exceed .07-10mg daily depending on weight and age. It is to toxic for the body at that point. Also our bodies are bombarded with other toxins in our environment. One less toxin, whether natural or not, is better for my body. Since Fluoride is naturally in things that I like each day, for example shellfish and tea, I chose not to use Fluoride in my homemade toothpaste.

However, I still needed an ingredient that would help build enamel and be good for my teeth. I chose Xylitol. I am in love with Xylitol. Not only is it a natural sweetener (when we use sugar, this is what we like to use instead) made from the fibers of plants, but it helps repair enamel when used in 4-10mg daily. Saliva is what is naturally suppose to help protect the teeth and mouth. After using Xylitol the saliva is more alkaline and raises the pH in the mouth. This make the saliva better able to help fight cavities and harden enamel. Another great thing about Xylitol is that it makes the mouth less acidic with less bacteria. The bacteria can not digest Xylitol. Therefore the bacteria in the mouth is greatly reduced, up to 90%. Also, because of the Xylitol the bacteria has a harder time sticking to teeth. This means less plaque. If you happen to overdose on Xylitol it just make you have loose stools or diarrhea. Xylitol texture is like sugar. Therefore when it is used in the toothpaste, I personally think it could be used as an abrasive. However, I have read nothing that says not to use Xylitol or compares it as an abrasive. This is just my personal opinion. So instead of using Fluoride, I personally thing Xylitol is the best choice.

The other ingredient that I chose to use is Unrefined Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. Coconut Oil has ALOT of great properties. It is the good kind of Saturated Fat and is a Medium Chain Fatty Acid. It contains Vitamins E and K, Minerals such as Iron, and Proteins. Coconut Oil is an Antimicrobial, Antifungal, and fights viruses and bacteria that cause diseases such as the Flu and HIV. Coconut Oil aids in proper digestion and Increased Immunity. It has many more amazing properties. However, the reason I chose to use Coconut Oil was for a few reasons. First Coconut oil aids in helping the body absorb vitamins and minerals. Some of those minerals are Calcium and Magnesium which are needed for proper development for bones and teeth. I also chose the Coconut Oil because its flavor mixed with the Xylitol is good. I am not using my peppermint oil I had planned on using in this homemade recipe because it taste great without it. I also use Coconut Oil for several things and those who follow my blog know, I like to use the most of the products I already have on hand. Also, using only the Xylitol and Coconut Oil it is safe for all ages. If it is accidentally swallowed it tastes good and is not harmful because both are used in cooking.
 
This toothpaste recipe is not made to whiten your teeth. Although I have noticed I am getting them cleaner somehow with less effort. They look cleaner too. However, I do know that some people get colored spots on their teeth or would like their teeth to be whiter. If so, from what I have learned it is okay to use baking soda for this purpose. I would not brush with it more than twice a week. If I choose to use baking soda to brush my teeth then I am just going to put some on my toothbrush and brush with it and water or maybe dabble it on with my homemade toothpaste. However, I would not recommend using it more than twice a week from what I have learned.





Ingredient List:
1 cup of Xylitol
6.5 tablespoons of Unrefined Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

Directions:
If you live in a place where your Coconut stays in a liquid state then you are fine. If not, warm your coconut oil in the microwave (try 15 second increments) or on the stove until it is in a liquid state. It does not have to be hot, just in a liquid state. Then stir in the Xylitol. It is that simple!

You can put your new homemade toothpaste in different types of containers. I have seen some people cut the end of their toothpaste tube and clean it out. Then they put in their recipe, fold the end over, and duct tape it. I have also seen people use baby jars or other little jars with lids. At this time, we are storing our in a little plastic jar with a lid. I have a small spoon to scoop it out with. I would not recommend dipping your toothbrush in the jar you use because you can introduce bacteria more easily.





10 comments:

  1. Great article, Jordan. I appreciate all the research that went into it. I didn't like the last homemade toothpaste I made, so I'm looking forward to trying this one. Thanks!

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    1. You're Welcome! Thank you! *smile* I also want to make a toothpaste that is made of Coconut Oil, Xylitol, Castile Soap, and Peppermint Oil just to see which one I like best. I need to make the recipe though. *smile*

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  2. Careful with the castile soap. It can be harsh on the gums and teeth. I tried using a little Dr. Bronner's on my toothbrush, as many campers are wont to do, and it caused sensitivity.

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    1. Thanks for your input! I am actually so in love with this recipe and have seen how great it works that I probably will not even try making another recipe. I will have to update on all the great things this basic recipe with coconut oil and xylitol have done for our teeth such as removing teeth stains and more!

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    2. A great dispenser for toothpaste is any bottle with a push-down spout, similar to body lotions.

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    3. This toothpaste recipe hardens more than regular toothpaste, at least it has in my experience. I do not think a body lotion hand pump would work, but it might work if one chose to reuse a toothpaste dispenser. I still use the jar and lid with a little clean spoon to get it out with. Let me know if that works for you though! Thanks for your input!

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  3. I just ran across this today, and made some-- I had been looking for a xylitol toothpaste because my neighbor, a dentist, highly recommends using a toothpaste with xylitol in it. This recipe is so simple, I am excited to get using it. I've done the tooth soap, with castile, and didn't like the soapy flavor. I like the way coconut oil leaves your teeth silky feeling, plus all the antibacterial benefits you mentioned. I added 2 things to my toothpaste. I had some cranberry pills (basically dried cranberry powder in a gelatin capsule) that I opened and added because I have read about cranberry being good if it is actually on your teeth. Plus I added some liquid minerals to hopefully remineralize any cavities. Thanks

    Here is the cranberry research if interested: http://www.urmc.rochester.edu/news/story/index.cfm?id=947

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    1. I am glad you like the recipe Alicia! Thanks for posting! I will definitely have to look up the information about the cranberries. I actually have cranberry capsules too. *smile* That sounds like a great idea!

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  4. hi, how big is that cup?

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    1. Hello Martin. *smile* It holds at least a cup measurement. I used to put the leftovers in another cup, however I have been using glass jars now because we are slowly moving away from using plastic in our home. Thanks for asking!

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