Are you a big fan of coconut oil? If so, we have good news for you! Experts have now discovered that coconut oil boasts a number of benefits for both our oral and dental health! Coconut oil was previously associated with benefits that span the full body, taking the world by storm, however, new research shows that coconut oil can help to prevent the development of gum disease, fight plaque, and so much more!
Published in the British Dental Journal, a study out of Ireland examines the potential uses for coconut oil in the area of dental care. Researchers specifically focused their attention on the natural antibiotic properties of the oil, and its impact on the Streptococcus bacteria, a common bacterium found within the human mouth.
The study was able to prove that enzyme-modified coconut oil was able to inhibit the growth of most strains of the Streptococcus bacteria, working to clean and protect the mouth. Specifically, if was found to be effective against Streptococcus mutans, the bacterium that has been largely associated with tooth decay.
Dr. Damien Brady, the chief researcher, wrote: “Incorporating enzyme-modified coconut oil into dental hygiene products would be an attractive alternative to chemical additives, particularly as it works at relatively low concentrations. Also, with increasing antibiotic resistance, it is important that we turn our attention to new ways to combat microbial infection.”
7 Reasons to Use Coconut Oil as Toothpaste
- Save Money
In order to keep your teeth clean, you only require a very small amount of coconut oil, allowing a single jar to go far, saving a significant amount of money when compared to the funds spent on commercial toothpaste.
- Safe for the Environment
A number of the chemicals and ingredients included in commercial toothpaste, such as sodium laurel sulfate negatively affect the environment, remaining in our waterways long after they have been rinsed down your drain! Coconut oil is all natural, carrying no environmental concerns.
- Eliminate Harmful Chemicals
Commercially available tubes of toothpaste contain a number of potentially harmful chemicals including the antibacterial chemical triclosan, which has been found to be an endocrine disruptor. Many toothpaste products also contain fluoride, which has been found to be poisonous to the body.
- Doubles as a Dog Toothpaste
Don’t forget about the dental health of your four-legged friend! While many of the recipes for coconut oil toothpaste contain ingredients that would not be recommended for Fido, using just coconut oil as a toothpaste, applying it to your dog’s teeth with a toothbrush, has been found to be highly effective.
- Whiten Your Teeth
A growing trend today with roots that span back thousands of years, oil pulling has been found to be effective for whitening your feet. The simple act of swishing coconut oil in your mouth for 15-20 minutes works to remove bacteria and plaque, leaving your teeth whiter and brighter.
- Fights Cavity-Causing Bacteria
As found in the above-mentioned study, coconut oil was found to be effective in fighting the decay-causing bacterium Streptococcus mutans. For best results, massage the oil into your gums daily for approximately 10 minutes.
- Easy to Make
Coconut oil toothpaste is incredibly simple to make, requiring only a few easy to find ingredients. Try this recipe for Easy Coconut Oil Toothpaste:
Easy Coconut Oil Toothpaste
You Will Need:
- ½ cup coconut oil
- 2 tbsp baking soda
- 10 to 20 drops of peppermint or cinnamon essential oil
- Heat the coconut oil, allowing it to soften and eventually enter a liquid form.
- Stir in the baking soda, mixing it to create a paste.
- Add your choice of essential oil.
- Store your toothpaste in a sealed container.