Mangalorean Recipes

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How to make your own toothpaste or tooth powder

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After watching the constant TV advertisements for Tooth Pastes, I wondered if the high cost of these items today are not due to these ads, for which the Producers have to pay through their nose.   Actually, we the consumers subsidize these advertisements, by patronizing their brands.

Just read what follows, and if you want to help the Producers to become richer, it is fine.  If not you can save and use this money for your other needs.

"Proctor and Gamble and Lever Brothers-and any number of other manufacturers-would like us to believe that the only proper way to care for our teeth is with expensive, highly flavored toothpastes that come in non-biodegradable, throwaway, zinc-and-lead (Now plastic -ed.) tubes.'Tain't so!

There are effective, low-cost alternatives to that aromatic goo-in-a-tube you find on supermarket shelves. Our family has been making and using its own toothpastes and powders for years...and we've enjoyed excellent dental health, too. You and your clan can save a significant amount of money-and at the same time keep your teeth and gums in good shape-by kicking the Madison Avenue habit and choosing to follow a few simple rules:


  1. MAKE YOUR OWN TOOTH POWDER. Thoroughly mix 3 parts baking soda (the cleanser and sweetener) with 1 part salt (the abrasive) and funnel the compound into a short small-mouthed container such as a pop or beer bottle. You'll find that the creation has a satisfying, different taste and leaves your mouth feeling very fresh and soothed. If you'd like, add a few drops of peppermint or wintergreen oil to the concoction - or mix the home "brew" half-and-half with a commercial tooth powder - to give the dentifrice a more pleasant flavor.  More Household Ingredients  |  Formula Submissions.
  2. MAKE YOUR OWN TOOTHPASTE. This formula is simply an extension of the tooth powder recipe: To each half cup of homemade powder, add 3 teaspoons of glycerin, 10-20 drops of flavoring (peppermint, wintergreen, anise, cinnamon or whatever) and 1 drop of food coloring. Mix the ingredients thoroughly in a bowl and add just enough water to make the concoction "tooth-pastey". Spoon the substance into a small refillable plastic squeeze bottle or any container that dispenses easily and won't leak. VoilÁ! Toothpaste!    (Isn't glycerin bad for you...?)

The amount of glycerin you add will control the "pastiness" of the cleanser and obviously the type of flavoring will determine the taste. Both ingredients are inexpensive and available at any drugstore. Your neighborhood grocer, of course, can supply you with salt, food coloring and baking soda.

Commercial toothpastes generally incorporate a slick, easy flowing combination of chalk, soap, glycerin and flavorings. Your homemade creation won't be as smooth...but I know you'll find it more satisfying, less wasteful and - above all - less expensive. You'll be able to make a year's supply of toothpaste (for a family of four) at a total cost of around a buck and a half (...maybe a little more by 2009 standards. -ed.).

The formulas I've outlined here have worked well for my family...but don't be afraid to experiment and work up your own recipes.

A little experience and imagination can go a long way. See what you can do to produce your own homemade million-dollar smiles...

Editor's NoteMy daughter and I made some toothpaste this past weekend. I must say that if you decide to try it, you may have to do some experimenting, as we did. I found that the glycerin called for in the recipe is not enough. We also cut back on the salt, and didn't use any food coloring. My daughter picked out some cinnamon extract instead of the mint flavoring, which I would've preferred. If you go with cinnamon, use it sparingly!!!

 I went to three different drugstores before I found what I needed. The last one, a local family pharmacy, had everything on the shelves. The first two were chain stores.

 I have to say, brushing with our homemade toothpaste was an experience, but I have never had my mouth feel fresher, and have that feeling last so long into the day (no, it wasn't the cinnamon...). I spent around $7.00, and I feel that there is enough left over ingredients to last at least six months or more.

UPDATE:  The previous note was written back in 1997.  Not too long ago, Dr. Paul Keyes contributed a piece to the OraMedia site which lists (in order of effectiveness) the best household ingredients which can be used in a toothpaste or a tooth powder ":


Last Updated on Thursday, 02 July 2015 11:06


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Sweet Heart of Jesus, Fount of Love and Mercy, a hymn I learnt in my school as a youngster of  eight !  Link;


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Last Updated on Saturday, 11 April 2015 10:17

About this site..

Welcome to Version 2.0 of Mangalorean Recipes. 

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This website makes an attempt to offer you recipes primarily from Mangalore, who originally migrated from Goa. So we have very many similarities.

Our mothers and grand mothers perfected Mangalorean cooking. However, the memory of the taste of these foods they prepared is fast being forgotten with new trends in the food industry,

For those, who are enterprising and interested in trying a variety of dishes, and those who are longing for their home food, this site may prove useful.

Being a Catholic brought up in that milieu, I have absorbed many values, which I like to share with those with similar interests.   I believe, the food is needed for the growth of the body, but there is also a spirit within us, which needs sustenance.   I wish to share the unique gift of music, which I have dedicated to my Maker,  and added it under the component: Catholic Church Music which can be freely used by our visitors, if they like it.

I have also included a Text Book to learn Music, and its script.   One generally does not realize its importance, with the modern recording and play back tools that are available.   But not all music is recorded, and the older music, is retained in the memory, and some have been good enough to write it in notation, which is the only way, to render music which is two dimensional, i.e. it is based on time and tonal pitch.   The lyrics can be written in spoken languages, but the music can not be. That is why, through a process of trial and error, the script was developed over 8 centuries, and the greatest of music that has come from the human mind, is available only in this form.

Thus the whole reason of this website, is to share what we have with others.   What we received from our ancestors, and which they gave us, because of their love for their children, we should also pass it on to the next generation.   I hope this tradition of sharing will go on, as years roll by and old faces disappear from the scene.

I would appreciate any feedback so please feel free to email me. Also I would like it if you gave your comments about the recipes and music on this site. Most recipes and music pages allow you to post your comments. So if you've had a chance to try the recipes or listen to the music, I would love to hear from you.

Thank You.

Walter Pais




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