Diet and Dental Health

We all know eating lots of sugary treats, candy and soda causes tooth decay. That’s a no-brainer. But this deeper dive into the specifics of diet and how it impacts dental health and cavities will be as fascinating to you as it was to me.

Most of us believe that once you have tooth decay, that cavity cannot be reversed and the only solution is to have part of your tooth drilled out and filled with a synthetic material. However, it’s been proven that there are ways to reverse cavities naturally. Studies have shown that cavities and tooth decay could potentially be reversed with diet.

Sixty-two children with cavities were divided into three different diet groups. Group 1 ate a standard diet plus oatmeal, which is rich in phytic acid. Group 2 consumed a normal diet and supplemented with vitamin D3. Group 3 ate a grain-free diet and supplemented with vitamin D3.

The results revealed that Group 1 who ate the diet high in grains and phytic acid had an increase in cavities. Group 2 showed improvements in the number of cavities. Group 3, who followed a grain-free diet with nutrient-rich foods like vegetables, fruits, meat, milk and took vitamin D3, saw the greatest improvements. Nearly all cavities in this group were healed.

According to the insights of Dr. Weston Price and several others, there are four main things that contribute to tooth decay:

Lack of minerals in the diet (calcium deficiency, magnesium deficiency and phosphorus deficiency)

Lack of fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E and K, especially vitamin D3 deficiency)

Consuming too much phytic acid-rich food

Too much consumption of processed sugar

The bottom line for me was the destructive nature of phytic acid-rich foods, which many of us consume regularly, if not daily. If you are unfamiliar with the term, phytic acid or phytate, is a mineral blocker and enzyme inhibitor found in grains, nuts, seeds and beans that can cause serious health problems in our diets.

The main reason phytic acid has become an issue today is because we have stopped ancient food preparation techniques, such as soaking, sprouting or fermentation, which kills off the phytic acid.

Too much phytic acid causes mineral deficiencies in two ways – by preventing you from absorbing minerals and also causing them to be leached from your bones and teeth – both of which can lead to osteoporosis as well as dental problems.

So do you have to completely give up your favorite morning oatmeal forever? No, not necessarily. I would suggest limiting it to 2 or 3 times a week and not daily. I would also recommend soaking any grain for 3 or 4 hours or overnight before cooking to deactivate most if not all of the phytates. Sprouting is another great method.

Would you be willing to make some changes if your diet is affecting your dental health? Or that of your children?