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Carrageenan in Toothpaste Can Cause Inflammation

You may notice that our formulas are carrageenan-free, unlike other toothpaste brands. But what is carrageenan anyway and why should you avoid it? We’ve got the answers below.

What is carrageenan?

Derived from red algae or seaweeds, carrageenan is processed through an alkaline procedure and used as a “natural” food-grade ingredient. When processed with acid instead of alkali, carrageenan is reduced to a low molecular weight, and is called degraded carrageenan or poligeenan.

How is carrageenan used? 

Even though carrageenan adds no nutritional value or flavor, the food and personal care products industries use it in a wide variety of applications. It serves as a substitute for fat and is used as thickener of nonfat or low-fat foods or dairy replacements. Carrageenan also functions as a stabilizer for beverages that are more likely to separate. 

Similarly, to food or drinks, carrageenan is used in toothpaste to help bind the ingredients and thickens the formula to create that paste-like consistency. 

Why is carrageenan harmful?

According to an updated report on carrageenan by The Cornucopia Institute, the unique chemical structure of carrageenan triggers an innate immune response in the body, recognizing it as a dangerous invader. This immune response leads to inflammation.

And for those who consume carrageenan regularly, this inflammation can cause serious health concerns such as inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis and it’s also connected to cancer.

Even though you do not consume toothpaste, the ingredients are still absorbed into your body through the soft tissues of the mouth. Many individuals who have experienced gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloating, have noticed that eliminating carrageenan from their lifestyle has improved their overall health.

Dr. Brite Carrageenan-Free Toothpaste

We don't believe in putting you and your family's health at risk, which is why we've chosen not to include carrageenan in our adult or kid's toothpaste formulas. Instead we use an organic arrowroot powder as a natural thickener. The substance is easy to digest, gluten-free and helps relieve mouth sore pain thanks to it's anti-inflammatory properties.