It is said that a Chinese Emperor mistakenly drank water boiled with a dead leaf in it, and that's how green tea was born. Today it's not so exotic, and it's found its place as a household item all over the world (no longer only a Chinese and Japanese delicacy). And though it dates back thousands of years, green tea is still rising in popularity for its massive benefits. Its effect on periodontal health alone is worth using it for. But there's more than that to love.
People often hail green tea's health benefits related to the antioxidants in it. These antioxidants are referred to as polyphenols and catechins. The most dominant one is called EGCG. It's anti-inflammatory and free radical neutralizing (cancer-fighting).
With that compound at the forefront of many studies on green tea, there is a strong link for green tea to both disease prevention, periodontal disease, and anti-aging.
But this unusual ingredient in our toothpaste has even more specific ways it bolsters dental health to give us healthy teeth.
How Green Tea Reverses Damage and Protects your Teeth
Green tea helps protect you in a variety of ways. While it has anti-inflammatory properties and fights disease, studies also demonstrate that it is antimicrobial, helps fight off bone resorption, and even has cognitive benefits. To understand the importance of those mechanisms to our oral health, we need to explore the specific nutrients that make them happen.
There are six major polyphenols (antioxidants) in green tea. But none is as often praised or studied as epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Research constantly reports EGCG as responsible for much of the good going on in green tea, including the anti-aging properties.
Anti-aging happens because EGCG neutralizes free radicals. Free radicals are dangerous because they are unstable atoms running amuck in our bodies. They cause cancer, damage skin, produce wrinkles, and (of course) cause aging. Although we don't understand as much as we'd like to about free radicals, we do know they cause illness when there are too many of them and not enough antioxidants (that's called oxidative stress).
Green tea works against oxidative stress, protecting you from UV damage, skin wrinkling, and various illnesses.
How Green Tea Eliminates Bacteria and Inflammation
Because the polyphenols in green tea boost the immune system, our bodies fight infection more efficiently. While the body is primed to fight off disease, EGCG kills microbes directly, reduces dental plaque, and also eliminates some viruses (even influenza).
Because bacteria (like gingivitis along with other gum diseases and oral bacteria) are killed by green tea, daily use of it keeps your gums clean and healthy. But bacteria are only part of the story. Inflammation reduces the body's ability to combat disease and stay healthy.
When the body is inflamed, it remains at higher risk of losing the fight against various diseases.
However, using green tea daily helps to keep both inflammation and oxidative stress down to more manageable levels. That means, with green tea, not only is gingivitis and influenza eliminated, but many other inflammatory diseases are kept at bay as well.
Halitosis (Bad Breath)
VCSs (volatile sulfuric compounds) often cause bad breath (halitosis). By reducing the amount of these VSCs produced in the mouth and saliva, we can mitigate it. Green tea has been shown to have a more immediate cleansing and deodorizing effect than even mint does.
However, since both green tea and mint work to clean and freshen the mouth, both are in our whitening toothpaste!
How Using Green Tea Protects You From Bone Loss
Green tea also keeps our teeth supported with strong bones.
Certain cells (osteoclasts) break down bone in the body. This process is called bone resorption. We often think of it as bone loss. When these osteoclasts continue to develop and break down bones uninhibited, it eventually leads to osteoporosis and other issues.
The polyphenols in green tea work against osteoclast production. They stop more of these cells from producing and also kill existing ones.
While teeth are not bones, they are supported by them. If that support fails, then the teeth will suffer as well (leading to tooth loss). Preventing bone resorption means keeping the teeth healthy. It happens by boosting the health of the entire mouth and, in turn, the rest of the body. That is more effective than only brushing the grime off.
While keeping the bones supported and mouth healthy, green tea also sharpens the mind.
The Cognitive Boost
EGCG is a cognitive booster. It protects neurons and brain cells. Studies suggest that EGCG may help slow the deterioration brought on by Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. Paired with an amino acid called L-theanine, it enhances focus and calms the nervous system.
That means it’s also great for reducing stress, no coffee jitters.
Does the Green Tea in Our Toothpaste Contain Caffeine?
Although green tea does contain caffeine, we do not use enough green tea in our toothpaste for anyone to worry about caffeine (pregnant or not).
Instead, we extracted the antimicrobial and protective stuff to make sure that your teeth are nourished without unwanted mega-doses of caffeine sneaking into your body.
Will Green Tea Stain?
Green tea has been exposed as a drink that stains the teeth. Sometimes more so than coffee or black tea. The good news is that we don’t use any of the parts of green tea that stain, meaning teeth whitening isn't something we need to worry about being blunted.
We're careful to extract only the beneficial compounds. We don’t use any of the coloration, only the cleansing and protective parts of green tea. Because of that, the green tea we use reinforces the whiteness of your teeth!
Green Tea and Fluoride
Many green teas do contain fluoride. But the higher the quality of green tea, the less fluoride it contains. We make sure to source our tea cleanly and leave the fluoride out.
Rather than using fluoride in our toothpaste, we actually use hydroxyapatite. It is the same mineral our teeth are made of, and it is a natural way to remineralize teeth and whiten them!
Our Discovery of Green Tea and Hydroxyapatite
Our founder, Katie Wells, spent years searching for natural ways to boost the oral microbiome. In 2010 Katie went to the dentist and learned she had a cavity. At first, she wanted to fill it and get the whole thing over with but held off. Instead, she dove into researching ways to heal her teeth. The waiting paid off.
By Katie’s next dentistry trip, her cavity was gone, and the staff remarked on how amazing her teeth were. Now one of the main ingredients she feels crucial to protecting her mouth is hydroxyapatite. She added green tea for its unique and synergistic work toward building a healthier oral microbiome and better overall health.
While hydroxyapatite strengthens the teeth themselves, green tea supports their health, the bones under them and reduces inflammation around them. Most toothpaste won't do that and instead reverse the positive effects they claim to have.
The Danger in Most Toothpaste
Toothpaste is often one of the most harmful household items to the health of our families. Right on the back of most tubes, there is a warning most people will never read. If you swallow more than the average amount recommended to brush with, you need to call poison control. Between the plastic beads and harsh chemicals, no wonder!
We avoid those toxins. Rather than scrubbing away our health with chemicals, we wanted there to be an option to add natural ingredients that whiten teeth. Although green tea is an unusual ingredient, it is safe. It boosts the function of the oral microbiome, keeping your teeth fresh and bright.
Why Green Tea Powder Belongs in Your Mouth
Because green tea is
- Antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory (it kills harmful bacteria like gingivitis, protecting the gums)
- Neutralizes free radicals (anti-aging and anticancer, especially oral cancer since we are talking toothpaste)
- Works against smelly breath (stops the production of VSCs and refreshes the breath)
- And protects bones (halts the production of osteoclasts)
While this unusual ingredient found its way onto our list for our Whitening Toothpaste, it is far from being the only superstar ingredient we have.
All of our ingredients work together to boost our oral microbiomes. It has a great mouth-feel and works fast. Check out the reviews and pick up a tube to strengthen and whiten your teeth naturally with every brush!
1. Chatterjee, A., Saluja, M., Agarwal, G., & Alam, M. (2012). Green tea: A boon for periodontal and general health. Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology, 16(2), 161–167. https://doi.org/10.4103/0972-124X.99256
2. Wells, Katie. (2009, October 20). Benefits of Green Tea. Wellness Mama. Retrieved from https://wellnessmama.com/183/green-tea/
3. Wells, Katie. (2019, December 7). How to Remineralize Teeth and Reverse Tooth Decay Naturally. Wellness Mama. https://wellnessmama.com/3650/remineralize-teeth/