One of the most consistent questions we get is about the difference between neem toothpowder and toothpaste.
Most of us grew up using toothpaste, so we expect that fizzy, sweet peppermint taste when we brush our teeth. Neem toothpowder, of course, doesn’t have anything fizzy and our best-selling formulation doesn’t even have peppermint.
Take a look at the list of ingredients, however, and you may start to reconsider. Even the best neem toothpastes don’t have as much neem as our toothpowder. We love – and sell – the Organix-South brand, but neem is still the 14th ingredient. (It is a supercritical extract though, so it has more concentrated neem compounds than other neem toothpastes.) Neem leaf extract is actually the next-to-last ingredient in Desert Essence tea tree oil and neem leaf toothpaste.
Then look at our toothpowder ingredients – in every formulation, neem bark is the top ingredient. Other ingredients include:
- Food-grade diatomaceous earth is primarily silica and also contains nearly 20% calcium, both of which are important in the remineralization of teeth. *
- Baking soda, the long-time standard for whitening teeth. *
- Cinnamon, cloves or peppermint, also traditionally used to maintain oral health. *
- Xylitol, the tooth-friendly sweetener. *
From a more scientific perspective, we recently ran an ORAC test on the neem toothpowder out of curiosity. The cinnamon and cloves also have extraordinarily high levels of antioxidants. Turns out the toothpowder was far stronger than we expected — with an ORAC score of 1200. * (That compares to less than 100 for well-known foods like broccoli, tomatoes and cranberries.)
That’s particularly important in your mouth. Oral disease has been linked to heart disease with implications for other issues as well. Chronic inflammation of any kind — including gum disease — has been implicated in even more serious diseases. *
Of course, neem hasn’t been through the stringent FDA testing that would allow us to make health claims, mainly because it’s practically a weed in some tropical countries. We can’t patent it (thank goodness!) so we’d never be able to make back the millions of dollars it would cost for the required tests.
Instead, we decided to guarantee the neem toothpowder — if you don’t see and feel a difference in 60 days, we’ll refund your money. * (Fair warning — we’ve been offering this guarantee for running up on 20 years and haven’t returned any money yet!)
We get a lot of questions about whether it will turn your teeth brown but have had only two serious complaints in the last 20 years – and one customer called back and apologized, saying his yellowing teeth were the side effect of a prescription mouthwash. He’d gone back to using the neem toothpowder and said he was going to use it for the rest of his life because it works so well.
And while we don’t have FDA approval to label neem toothpowder as “whitening,” it’s been formulated to clean teeth effectively while still providing other benefits. * Silica and baking soda are both recognized as whitening agents, although they are significantly less abrasive than some whitening toothpaste. (Abrasiveness is measured on scale that starts with baking soda at 7 and runs up to 200 for Colgate’s 2-in-1 Tartar Control/Whitening.) Silica is an ingredient in almost every toothpaste marketed for sensitive teeth and the natural silica in diatomaceous earth is actually water soluble so it minimizes levels of abrasiveness.
And if you miss the fizzy peppermint taste of your traditional toothpaste, you can always use it with the neem toothpowder. Just put the paste on your brush and dip it in the toothpowder.
Neem Tree Farms does not sell products which are intended to diagnose, prevent, treat or cure any disease, or which repel insects from anything except plants.