Some very damning evidence has come forward that the ingredient triclosan, originally registered as a pesticide but used in more modern times in a wide array of hygiene products, is an endocrine disruptor that may also cause other health issues like cancer, thyroid dysfunction, and infertility just to name a few.
Now that this has come to light, Colgate still refuses to remove the compound from its number one best-selling toothpaste, Total. After all, the company spent $38 million dollars and ten years getting it approved. In fact, Colgate continues to laud its FDA approval for Total some 17 years ago, while the FDA says that even though more studies have shown up in the meantime that merit further review (you know, whenever they get around to that), the agency does admit, “Animal studies have shown that triclosan alters hormone regulation.” But FDA goes on to say, “However, data showing effects in animals don’t always predict effects in humans.”
Really? Isn’t that the whole reason animal studies are done for product safety in the first place? Colgate facilitated studies on mice, rabbits and dogs in this case. Aren’t animal studies — the ones the FDA now says might not predict effects in humans — the whole BASIS for the FDA’s approval of Total to begin with???
No, because it turns out the FDA knew there were issues with triclosan all the way back in 1978 but still did not regulate it!
Meanwhile, the precautionary principle has got to be used here, guys. The fact that the FDA had to be sued to release the toxicity studies involved in Total’s approval should speak volumes alone. At the very least, as one commenter wrote, “Compromising the permanent long-term health risks associated with thyroid disorders against the benefits associated with plaque and gingivitis prevention appears very short-sighted.”
P.S. – My local grocery store just so happens to be giving out manufacturer coupons for .75 cents off a tube of Total right now. Obviously someone is in damage control mode.