Homemade mouth spray recipe that freshens your breath faster than gum
We all have those moments when we need fresh breath in a hurry, and most of us (myself included admittedly) will reach for a stick of gum or have a quick swish of mouthwash to try and resolve the problem. While it may feel like these products work wonders – freshening your breath in moments – they could be doing a lot more harm than good.
Fear not! Mother Nature has provided us with plenty of natural solutions that work just as well – the only thing they are harmful towards is bad breath. Follow the recipe at the end of the article and start living halitosis-free, but first, find out why you should never put chewing gum in your mouth again.
Is Chewing Gum Bad For You?
Most store-bought chewing gums are made from a concoction of a vast amount of ingredients. Take just a moment to read the ingredients list of your favorite brand – even sugar-free brands – and you might be quite unpleasantly surprised. A number of these ingredients are toxic and what’s worse is, you’re putting them directly into your mouth and allowing them to stew there, sometimes for hours at a time!
How dangerous are these ingredients really? We’ve collected together just 4 common chewing gum ingredients that could have you spitting your gum out:
1) Butylated Hydroxytoluene
Often shortened to BHT, so it looks less scary on the gum packet, this ingredient is banned in many countries around the world, but not in North America. It has been linked to organ system toxicity, and may even be carcinogenic (1).
2) Titanium Dioxide
This ingredient is a whitening agent, so if you favor whitening chewing gums, you’ve probably chewed on this. This ingredient has been linked to autoimmune disorders, asthma, and even Crohn’s disease. Unfortunately, it’s also potentially carcinogenic (1).
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Sugar-free gums will usually contain this toxic artificial sweetener which is metabolized inside your body into formaldehyde which is a carcinogen and is not properly eliminated from your body by your kidneys and liver. This is one of the most dangerous ingredients in gum as it has been linked to birth defects, cancers, and even brain tumors (2).
4) Gum Base
One of the more mysterious ingredients in chewing gum, “gum base” is the name given to all manner of ingredients that the manufacturers simply don’t want to reveal. They aren’t published anywhere, and the manufacturers don’t need to publish them, however, they usually include plasticizers, fillers, and resins (2). Not really sure what all of those are? That’s why you should stop chewing gum.
Clearly, chewing gum is not the best way to go about getting rid of smelly breath. Some people might turn to mouthwash as an alternative, but these can be damaging too. Mouthwashes that claim to kill 99 percent of bacteria, or similar, don’t discriminate between the good and bad bacteria in your mouth (3). This total wipeout could lead to problems further along the digestive tract, as the good bacteria in all parts of the digestive system (mouth included) are vital for healthy function.
Homemade Breath Freshener Recipe
Thankfully there is an alternative. This recipe will not only give you lasting fresh breath, but it will do it in a natural, healthy, and cost-effective way. You can use it as mouthwash, or transfer it into a spray bottle to use as a spray on the go, and it’s super easy to make. Unlike many of the sprays and mouthwashes available on the market, it leaves no alcohol burn and no medicinal aftertaste. Why not give it a try?
Minty Clove Mouthwash
Prep Time: 15 minutes
- 1 cup of water.
- 1 teaspoon of whole cloves.
- 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon.
- 4 drops of peppermint essential oil.
- On the stove, bring the water to a boil.
- To the boiling water, add the cloves, cinnamon, and peppermint and remove from the heat.
- Allow the spices to infuse into the water for ten minutes.
- Strain the mixture twice through a mesh strainer.
- Pour into a bottle and keep refrigerated.
To make an on the go version of this, simply decant some into a small spray bottle, and add a drop of honey.
Why Does It Work?
The reason this natural remedy works so well with such simple ingredients is that all the ingredients naturally have halitosis-fighting properties.
Cinnamon contains cinnamic aldehyde. This naturally reduces the amount of bad bacteria found in your saliva (5).
Cloves have wonderful antiseptic and anesthetic properties that can fight gum infections thanks to their eugenol content. In fact, many dentists even use oil of cloves because of these amazing properties (4).
Peppermint Essential Oil has been found by researchers to be particularly effective at killing anaerobic bacteria, the type that thrives in low-oxygen environments such as the mouth, and can lead to gum disease (6). It tastes great too!
Give It a Try
The next time that you reach for a stick of gum or bacteria-blasting mouthwash think about the dangerous effects both of them could have on your oral, and overall health, and reach instead for this friendlier, but just as effective, natural bad-breath eliminating mouthwash.
1. 6 Disturbing Side Effects of Chewing Gum. Mercolacom. 2016. Available at: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/02/03/6-chewing-gum-side-effects.aspx. Accessed September 14, 2016.
2. 5 Common Chewing Gum Ingredients Linked to Cancer. Mercolacom. 2016. Available at: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/09/14/chewing-gum-cancer-risk.aspx. Accessed September 14, 2016.
3. Listerine: Kills 99% Percent of Germs and Maybe Your Health – Organics.org. Organicsorg. 2016. Available at: http://organics.org/listerine-kills-99-percent-germs-and-maybe-your-health/. Accessed September 14, 2016.
4. Oil of Cloves: The Benefits of Eugenol. Mother Earth Living. 2016. Available at: http://www.motherearthliving.com/plant-profile/eugenol.aspx. Accessed September 14, 2016.
5. Gerber S. Homemade Minty Clove Mouthwash + Breath Spray | Hello Glow. Hello Glow. 2015. Available at: http://helloglow.co/minty-clove-mouthwash-breath-spray/. Accessed September 14, 2016.
6. The top 5 essential oils for healthy teeth and gums – Body Unburdened. Body Unburdened. 2014. Available at: http://bodyunburdened.com/top-5-essential-oils-healthy-teeth-and-gums/. Accessed September 14, 2016.
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