Fluoride helps to prevent gum and tooth disease along with cavities and promotes dental enamel forming. However, fluoride can be toxic if swallowed in large amounts.
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Chocolate toothpaste is, in its simplest form, toothpaste with chocolate flavoring added to it. Some varieties also include traditional peppermint or spearmint flavorings, making the toothpaste chocolate-mint flavored. Other varieties only include chocolate flavoring, and usually taste a bit like hot cocoa or a semi-dark chocolate candy bar.
Some types of chocolate toothpaste only contain artificial flavoring, but many companies use true cacao extract instead. Not only does this cacao give the toothpaste a chocolaty flavor, but research done by Tulane University also supports claims that cacao fights cavities, hardens tooth enamel, and helps keep teeth and gums healthy. Its benefits, studies say, are very similar to that of fluoride.
Another possible benefit contained in some types of chocolate toothpaste is xylitol, a sweet extract naturally produced in edible plants. Xylitol sweetens the toothpaste, brings out the flavors of the chocolate extracts, and may also help reduce plaque. Not all chocolate toothpastes contain xylitol, so those interested in reaping its benefits must read ingredient labels. Some pastes only contain sucralose, which will not harm teeth, but will not necessarily keep them healthy, either.
Shoppers interested in trying chocolate toothpaste generally have to purchase it online. This novelty product is not widely available in stores in most areas of the world, but online shops often offer a variety of different kinds of chocolate toothpaste. Some flavor combinations include orange, raspberry, and strawberry extracts mixed in with the chocolate flavoring. Companies may even provide sampling kits so customers may try all the flavors and choose their favorite.
Those interested in making their own oral hygiene products can make a version of chocolate toothpaste at home. A recipe for homemade toothpaste usually includes 2 parts baking soda, 1 part sea salt, 1/2 part mint extract and a little water. To make chocolate toothpaste, simply substitute cacao extract for the mint extract and add about 1/2 part xylitol or sucralose to make the paste pleasantly sweet.
Homemade chocolate toothpaste usually won't foam up like commercial products, but it can be just as versatile. Vanilla, mint, orange, cinnamon, and fruit-flavored extracts all generally mix well with chocolate, allowing the maker to choose a different flavor every night, if desired. Those who find the salty flavor of the sea salt and baking soda unpleasant can add an extra part of flavoring extract, or replace some of the salt with an artificial sweetener, to make it more palatable.