A popular toothpaste brand is the subject of a lawsuit filed by three New York residents alleging one of the brand's all natural products contained artificial ingredients.

Falosha Martin, Sonia Severino and Luchun Huo filed the lawsuit March 9 in U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York against Colgate-Palmolive Co. over its Tom's of Maine all natural toothpaste.

The lawsuit claims Tom's of Maine advertises its products as “natural,” but it contains “highly chemically processed ingredients such as glycerin and sodium lauryl sulfate.”

Glycerin is used in many of Tom's of Maine products including the whitening, multibenefit, fresh breath, anticavity, sensitive, children's, flouride-free and SLS Free product lines, the suit said.

Glycerin is often used in the manufacture of dishwashing liquid and shampoos, the lawsuit said.

“Young children learning to brush their teeth, however, tend to swallow toothpaste prior to learning to spit,” the lawsuit said. “Therefore, parents who have been led to believe that Tom's of Maine toothpaste products are safe to swallow because of the 'natural' claims unfortunately do not realize that swallowing the toothpaste is essentially the equivalent of ingesting dishwashing detergent or shampoo.”

The lawsuit seeks class-action status for those who purchased the Tom's of Maine brand. The suit seeks more than $5 million in damages plus court costs.

The plaintiffs are represented by C.K. Lee of the Lee Litigation Group, PLLC, of New York City.

U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York case number 1:15-cv-01214.

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