The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a warning noting that they will be putting a ban on triclosan — a common antibacterial agent used in toothpaste, soaps, cosmetics, detergents and toys. This chemical can cause a number of health complications as well as side-effects. Colgate Total toothpaste is just one of many products that have triclosan as an active ingredient.
The Real Truth
In reality, Colgate Total is one of the very few products containing triclosan that the FDA has not banned. In September 2016, the agency ruled that a host of antiseptic and antibacterial wash products could no longer be sold in the United States, due to the presence of certain ingredients — including triclosan: The manufacturer of Colgate- Colgate Palmolive were able to demonstrate that the health benefits of the product outweighed any potential for harm.
Andrea Fischer, an FDA Spokesperson, said:
“Based on scientific evidence, the balance of benefit and risk is favourable for these products.”
On the other hand, the Natural Resource Defense Council said in a statement: “The dangers of triclosan (and a related antibacterial chemical, triclocarban) are many. For starters, it’s an endocrine disruptor, meaning it interferes with important hormone functions, which can directly affect the brain in addition to our immune and reproductive systems.”
Specifically, the chemical disturbs thyroid, testosterone, and estrogen regulation, which can create a host of issues including:
- Early puberty
- Poor sperm quality
‘Studies have also shown it can lead to impaired learning and memory, exacerbate allergies, and weaken muscle function. The impacts of prolonged exposure during fetal development, infancy, and childhood can be particularly severe, resulting in permanent damage.”