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Does brushing teeth/toothpaste mess with intermittent fasting?

by (12174)
Updated about 12 hours ago
Created November 10, 2010 at 8:20 PM

Like a lot of folks, my favorite way to spontaneously fast is if I'm not hungry in the morning - just taking it a few more hours before eating.

But I am a very faithful morning toothbrusher and have started to wonder if my seemingly benign minty sweet toothpaste could be screwing with my physiology and thwarting my best intentions with fasting. So basically this spawned three questions:

  1. Is that 30 sec.-1 min. hit of minty sweet (which is spat back into the sink) enough to mess with the ketosis and steady low blood sugar that I'd have first thing in the morning?
  2. If you think so, would chewing a mint leaf (or something minty but not sweet) be a viable alternative so I don't have to wander around with skunk breath until my first meal of the day? Or do you have other alternatives to suggest?
  3. Anybody actually observed this for themselves and have any n=1 observations to share about whether toothbrushing/toothpaste and intermittent fasting don't mix?

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1781 · November 12, 2010 at 1:45 PM

The baking soda and salt is probably the better way to go anyway, considering how poisonous toothpaste is. http://www.suite101.com/content/toxic-toothpaste-active-ingredients-a112475 http://www.jimmyr.com/blog/Toothpaste_poisonous93_2006.php

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361 · November 11, 2010 at 12:56 AM

You are thinking too much

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1638 · November 10, 2010 at 10:30 PM

Or with the old classic - baking soda (with or without a bit of salt)

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4 Answers

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24523 · September 07, 2013 at 12:44 AM

No!!!!! To question #1, that is.

Brushing with even the sweetest of toothpastes has never interrupted ketosis for me, as per ketostix results.

Also, I don't believe a bit of insulin would push you out of ketosis (assuming that toothpaste would raise your insulin more than a microscopic amount). In fact, can't exogenous insulin put you INTO ketosis?

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1710 · December 08, 2010 at 5:05 PM

No way.

Even if your body produced an insulin response to the presence of a sweet taste in the mouth (some clinical evidence suggests this is possible, but does not necessarily happen), there's no way you would interrupt the actual energy pathways that have been mobilized to supply your needs.

In other words... if you are fasting for no more than 16-18 hours, your energy needs are being met by stored glycogen (taken from the liver into the blood for the brain and used in the muscles for movement) and by fatty acids mobilized from the adipose tissue (for the muscles).

Toothpaste will not affect that.

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2581 · November 24, 2010 at 11:08 PM

Brush to help prevent decay, that's why everyone should brush their teeth not just to have good breath.

There is no sugar or calories in toothpaste. And you're not swallowing so even if there was a few calories you wouldn't be consuming it.

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7324 · November 10, 2010 at 9:29 PM

You could just try brushing with water, that would probably get rid of the bad breath.

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1638 · November 10, 2010 at 10:30 PM

Or with the old classic - baking soda (with or without a bit of salt)

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1781 · November 12, 2010 at 1:45 PM

The baking soda and salt is probably the better way to go anyway, considering how poisonous toothpaste is. http://www.suite101.com/content/toxic-toothpaste-active-ingredients-a112475 http://www.jimmyr.com/blog/Toothpaste_poisonous93_2006.php

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