One Good Thing | Toothpaste...sorta

April 10, 2013

I began my own 30 day paleo challenge Monday. We typically eat about 80% strict paleo. When we “cheat” we eat some cheese, gluten free bread, or white potatoes. Not terrible cheats but still not the best nutrients for our bodies. 

I love the book Practical Paleo and most of the recipes in it. There’s this great first half of the book that I’ve always skipped over. I never thought the writing in cookbooks (you know, all the chapters that come before the recipes) would be an enjoyable read. I decided to look at the writing the other night. I’ve really enjoyed what I’ve read so far and it made me motived to start one of the 30 day meal plans provided in the book. So, Monday I started the Practical Paleo 30 day meal plan for fat loss. (Don’t roll your eyes. As my good friend Lindsay would say, I’m squishy in certain areas.) Today is day 3 and I’m loving it. I’ve tried recipes I would not have tried otherwise. For example, recently I have had an aversion to the texture and taste of chicken thighs and breasts. Day 1 of the meal plan has mustard glazed chicken thighs for lunch. I was hesitant to try this but I decided that I was going to follow the meal plan so I was going to give the recipe a try. The chicken thighs were awesome. I loved them. Today for lunch, I had lamb dolmas (stuffed grape leaves with ground lamb) and a salad with spinach, raw asparagus, green apple, and fennel. I didn’t know exactly what fennel was until I looked at the shopping list for this meal plan. (That’s another cool thing, each meal plan as a weekly, printable, shopping list.) I had to Google a picture of fennel so I knew what I was buying. I think fennel has become one of my new favorite root veggies. The one thing I am weary of is beets. I didn’t look at all of the recipes for the week but beets were on the shopping list. I almost thought I shouldn’t buy them but then I looked down at my cart and realized I was buying ground lamb, grape leaves, and fennel. I thought I should give the beets a try. I’ll keep you updated on the beets status. 

My biggest piece of advice for anyone doing a 30 meal plan or diet challenge is to stick to your guns. Prepare your meals every day and take your lunches with you to work. Don't give yourself the excuse that you'll be able to find something around your office to eat or at a restaurant close by because you won't. 

Remember when I talked about my dog having a recurring ear infection? Remember how I said we were going to use an apple cider vinegar wash and garlic oil drop? Remember how I said I was going to take before and after pictures? I couldn’t get the pictures. He won’t sit still enough to let me take a picture. But his ears are healed! I was beyond happy when I went to give him some drops last night and I realized his ears were pink not bright red with a bunch of wax build up. We’ve also switched his food which I think made a big difference. Jonathan and I have made an educated guess that Denver is allergic to gluten (runs in Jonathan’s family, funny that our dog may have the same sensitivity). We bought him some grain free dog food that he loves. The first few days we mixed it with his old dog food and he would fish out the new food and eat it all first then eat the old food. It was comical. Typically, Denver has very itchy skin for which we give him fish oil and dog food that is formulated with salmon for sensitive skin and stomach. At first, this made his skin less red and itchy, then, the itchiness and redness came back. With this grain free food (still salmon flavored and still giving him fish oil) his redness around his snout has cleared up. I am so happy. I love my dog and I just want him to be happy and healthy. And I love it that he is naturally moving more and more towards being a little paleo puppy. 

And now onto my One Good Thing. Last week I went to the dentist because I’ve been experiencing pain in my teeth when I eat anything sweet. This could be something as sweet as honey to less sweet like a green apple, I even felt pain when I was brushing my teeth. The dentist said my gums were receding from my teeth and exposing my roots (probably a symptom from being on birth control since I was 13). He told me I could have my teeth desensitized. No thanks. I told him I wanted to avoid procedures and he recommended I use Sensodyne toothpaste. I have been using that since January and have not seen any progress. Then he recommended I use a fluoride mouth was but he told me to make sure I don’t swallow it. When someone tells you to put something in your mouth but to make sure you don’t swallow it, that doesn’t seem right. It’s like handing a kid a piece of candy and saying “here don’t eat this.” He told me high levels of fluoride are bad for my body. Of course, as soon as he said that, I did not want to do the mouth wash either. I left his office feeling slightly defeated. I knew I couldn’t eat sweets and brushing my teeth was still going to hurt. I told my husband how bothered I was by this and he saw a way to treat his wife. When I got home from work the next night he told me he had a surprise waiting for me. I was very curious and he pulled out a Paleo Kit, the huge MRE size. I was so stoked. Then he told me he had another surprise for me. He pulled out some paleo toothpaste. That’s right, I can even find toothpaste that is paleo. I was ecstatic! I had been contemplating buying the Primal Tooth Powder from Primal Life Organics and I think he knew this. So he found something that is more like toothpaste texture wise with similar ingredients to the tooth powder. It’s called Earthpaste.

It's slightly sweet from the Xylitol

The main ingredient in this tooth paste is clay. Yup, clay. The clay contains calcium and potassium. This will scrub, polish, and strengthen teeth. It also helps remove tartar and clean your gums. I like that I know what every single ingredient in my toothpaste now. Common toothpaste contains some funky ingredients like: fluoride (considered a toxic drug by the FDA), aspartame (product of aspartame is formaldehyde), Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate or SLS (commonly known for causing mouth ulcers and canker sores). You can read more about the dangers of commercial toothpaste here. I remember when my husband first found out he was allergic to gluten the doc also told him he had a high levels of fluoride and was close to experiencing symptoms of fluoride toxicity. He told Jonathan he needed to switch his toothpaste immediately. Who would have thought toothpaste could be so scary! This stuff my husband surprised me with is actually pretty tasty, and it’s safe to ingest every ingredient. I have been using this for a week now and I wanted to hold off writing it as my One Good Thing to see if it was worth the hype or if my teeth needed to be desensitized (how terrifying does that sound?). I have been able to enjoy some delish paleo chocolate mousse and sink my teeth into an apple without any pain since I’ve switched my toothpaste. And that’s why Earthpaste (especially the wintergreen flavor) is my One Good Thing! Enjoy. 

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