4

votes

Will the paleo diet improve my teeth and gum health?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 16, 2010 at 5:38 PM

9 out of 10 dentists are worried about the ramifications of the paleo diet. What's the word?

E34fbfa1bca9ae970c9c7313bf9de9f8

(1436)

on March 24, 2011
at 04:30 PM

so.. what's your diet/dental regimen like?

A89f9751a97c3082802dc0bcbe4e9208

(13978)

on September 27, 2010
at 06:51 AM

David, I love that book! Sean, great advice. Thank you! :)

B124653b19ee9dd438710a38954ed4a3

(1634)

on September 26, 2010
at 09:43 PM

Watch out for the oxalates in spinach that mess with calcium absorption.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on April 13, 2010
at 08:17 PM

9 out of 10 statistics are made up on the spot.

65125edd5aafad39b3d5b3a8b4a36bb7

(6082)

on April 13, 2010
at 05:45 PM

Grok here got my joke. If people have less dental problems, dentists will be out of work.

65125edd5aafad39b3d5b3a8b4a36bb7

(6082)

on April 11, 2010
at 03:15 AM

It was mainly a joke.

A1a4882d31414600b2cab395a5b17161

(699)

on April 10, 2010
at 11:21 PM

Can you post a link to this statistic?

95ab15c8ef50ff0daf87ccbdd52cd3b8

(2384)

on February 21, 2010
at 09:21 PM

Excellent answer. I second (or third, or whatever) the benefits of K2 (and D3) supplementation.

65125edd5aafad39b3d5b3a8b4a36bb7

(6082)

on February 21, 2010
at 08:57 PM

Great answer, very informative. I'm going to read up more on vitamin K supplementation.

F0978a2a1c37d2a3d4ec6344c0c4ff82

(2213)

on February 20, 2010
at 08:23 PM

No, not to my knowledge, but in an exchange I had with Dr. Kurt Harris of the PaNu website he seemed to believe that it was essential that the dairy be pastured or grass-fed. I speculate (but cannot prove) that gut damage from 30+ years of eating the SAD and taking GERD medications impaired my K2 absorption hence necessitating my having to supplement upwards of 3mg per day to reverse the deficiency. This is more than what most people would get eating generous amounts of pastured dairy. I use the Thorne Research drops which are expensive (~$50USD) but a bottle lasts me a long time.

C150e1706e1299323591da93208e603f

(240)

on February 20, 2010
at 12:28 PM

Does the dairy have to be unpasteurized to provide K2?

58a55f0986b8f49a8bc5666e10492569

on February 17, 2010
at 08:16 PM

Right! I've seen studies claiming to show higher income for dentists in areas where the water is fluoridated. Who was it who said that it's tough for people to believe in something when their income depends on their not believing it.

65125edd5aafad39b3d5b3a8b4a36bb7

(6082)

on February 17, 2010
at 01:49 PM

They would be worried that they'd be out of a job. Many in the health professions declare concern for health issues, but in truth, many of these health issues cause them to make tons of money.

E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on February 16, 2010
at 09:26 PM

Thanks Ed, I don't really read Free the Animal, so I've not seen them. Stephan over at Whole Health Source also has some great discussions of the synergeistic effects of A, D and K, which he argues are absolutely foundational to a tonne of things in terms of health (with vitamin D being a prohormone, it's not surprising. http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/search/label/fat-soluble%20vitamins?updated-max=2008-11-24T21%3A25%3A00-08%3A00&max-results=20

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11478)

on February 16, 2010
at 09:12 PM

The "Free the Animal" archives have extensive discussions of supplementation with vitamins D3 and K2, which may be synergistic for dental health.

E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on February 16, 2010
at 06:42 PM

Good point on the alternative calcium sources. If you can stomach them, tinned fish- sardines or salmon- are also great sources because of the bones. Come to mention it, bones in general are great for calcium, but having read NAPD, you don't need me to tell you that.

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7 Answers

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7
A89f9751a97c3082802dc0bcbe4e9208

(13978)

on February 16, 2010
at 06:22 PM

Because you're not eating wheat grain and not consuming the phytic acid in the wheat, and because you're getting more fat-soluble vitamins because of your high-fat diet, proponents of Weston A Price would suggest that your dental health should improve.

Read the book "Nutrition and Physical Degeneration" for more information.

P.S. Broccoli/spinach/kale has as much or more calcium per gram than milk.

E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on February 16, 2010
at 06:42 PM

Good point on the alternative calcium sources. If you can stomach them, tinned fish- sardines or salmon- are also great sources because of the bones. Come to mention it, bones in general are great for calcium, but having read NAPD, you don't need me to tell you that.

A89f9751a97c3082802dc0bcbe4e9208

(13978)

on September 27, 2010
at 06:51 AM

David, I love that book! Sean, great advice. Thank you! :)

B124653b19ee9dd438710a38954ed4a3

(1634)

on September 26, 2010
at 09:43 PM

Watch out for the oxalates in spinach that mess with calcium absorption.

best answer

14
F0978a2a1c37d2a3d4ec6344c0c4ff82

on February 20, 2010
at 08:54 AM

I've completely arrested severe "refractory" periodontal disease with a PaNu style lacto-paleo diet. The subtraction of carbs and sugars greatly decreases the amount of plaque biofilm generated by cutting off the bacteria's food supply. Along with increasing the production of anti-microbial peptides, Vitamin D3 normalization does great things for periodontal health like decreasing the production of Matrix Metalloproteinases (MMPs) or collegenases that are central to the inflammatory response that destroys gum and bone tissue in periodontal disease. Vitamin D3 does this in a dose dependent fashion - incredibly well - go search PubMed. Fish Oil or Krill Oil is also a very good adjunct and is documented to decrease MMP activity. Some of these same MMPs are also implicated in atherosclerosis, by the way, but I digress.

What was absolutely essential for me, and I owe my knowledge of this totally to Richard Nikoley's "Free the Animal" blog, was Vitamin K2. Only after supplementing Vitamin K2 did I completely stop forming tartar (calculus) despite being nearly zero-carb for a year prior. Makes sense since K2 deficiency causes inappropriate calcification in multiple tissue types. Go look at Richard Nikoley's site and Stephan Guyenet's "Whole Health Source" site. Both have many posts dealing with dental health and Vitamins D3 and K2. The WAPF website also has an in-depth article on Vitamin K2 (Activator X) by Chris Masterjohn that is outstanding and should be read by everyone.

Bottom line: a paleo diet that restricts carbohydrates, phytates and gluten and includes Vitamin D3, n-3/n-6 fatty acid normalization, intermittent fasting and pastured full-fat dairy OR supplemental Vitamin K2 kicks periodontal (gum) disease's butt, big time.

65125edd5aafad39b3d5b3a8b4a36bb7

(6082)

on February 21, 2010
at 08:57 PM

Great answer, very informative. I'm going to read up more on vitamin K supplementation.

C150e1706e1299323591da93208e603f

(240)

on February 20, 2010
at 12:28 PM

Does the dairy have to be unpasteurized to provide K2?

F0978a2a1c37d2a3d4ec6344c0c4ff82

(2213)

on February 20, 2010
at 08:23 PM

No, not to my knowledge, but in an exchange I had with Dr. Kurt Harris of the PaNu website he seemed to believe that it was essential that the dairy be pastured or grass-fed. I speculate (but cannot prove) that gut damage from 30+ years of eating the SAD and taking GERD medications impaired my K2 absorption hence necessitating my having to supplement upwards of 3mg per day to reverse the deficiency. This is more than what most people would get eating generous amounts of pastured dairy. I use the Thorne Research drops which are expensive (~$50USD) but a bottle lasts me a long time.

95ab15c8ef50ff0daf87ccbdd52cd3b8

(2384)

on February 21, 2010
at 09:21 PM

Excellent answer. I second (or third, or whatever) the benefits of K2 (and D3) supplementation.

6
Cc93847bfa820f0f2da654060b401fa5

(746)

on February 18, 2010
at 04:46 AM

9 out of 10 dentists want you to come in for regular cleanings and repairs.

I have no tooth pain from visible cavities anymore, no loose teeth, gums pretty much never bleed even when I rarely floss, plaque buildup is barely a fraction of what it used to be.

I never use mouthwash or toothpaste.

65125edd5aafad39b3d5b3a8b4a36bb7

(6082)

on April 13, 2010
at 05:45 PM

Grok here got my joke. If people have less dental problems, dentists will be out of work.

3
58a55f0986b8f49a8bc5666e10492569

on February 17, 2010
at 05:01 AM

I don't know what the dentists could be worried about. Paleo eliminates all of the sticky starches and sugars that cause tooth decay and gum disease. And one of their own, Weston Price, demonstrated that he could halt tooth decay in poor inner-city children with just Cod Liver Oil (the C.L.O. back then had more D3 than it does today) and butter oil with his "Activator X" - now shown to be Vitamin K2 - and no other dietary changes.

I have pretty bad teeth - 5 amalgam fillings in my baby teeth, all molars but one crowned and one root canal before I went paleo at age 48. Now at 58, I generally have good dental checkups, now and then need a crown re-done. The last few visits, the hygienist said I had left her with little work to do. The rate of decline of my dental health seems to have slowed down significantly.

65125edd5aafad39b3d5b3a8b4a36bb7

(6082)

on February 17, 2010
at 01:49 PM

They would be worried that they'd be out of a job. Many in the health professions declare concern for health issues, but in truth, many of these health issues cause them to make tons of money.

58a55f0986b8f49a8bc5666e10492569

on February 17, 2010
at 08:16 PM

Right! I've seen studies claiming to show higher income for dentists in areas where the water is fluoridated. Who was it who said that it's tough for people to believe in something when their income depends on their not believing it.

1
03aeff8d87a3b53a449b5b8e9158da98

(3268)

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

Purely n=1 (meaning the personal experience of just a single individual; your mileage may vary), but for what it's worth: I just had my six-month dental cleaning, after five months of eating paleo. It went very fast, since there was not a lot to clean, and the hygenist even complimented me on my extreme diligence in flossing. "I can't remember a patient who had no food particles at all in their gums!" I didn't tell that I NEVER floss!

E34fbfa1bca9ae970c9c7313bf9de9f8

(1436)

on March 24, 2011
at 04:30 PM

so.. what's your diet/dental regimen like?

1
E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on February 16, 2010
at 06:46 PM

I think it depends what particular elements of the paleo diet you're following or not. Getting plenty of vitamins D and A is so essential that if you're not doing those, then you'll necessarily be missing out a big step with regards to your dental health. That said you'll be doing yourself a huge favour by not eating wheat and thus not forcing your body to plough through it's vitamin D stores at many times the normal rate.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11478)

on February 16, 2010
at 09:12 PM

The "Free the Animal" archives have extensive discussions of supplementation with vitamins D3 and K2, which may be synergistic for dental health.

E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on February 16, 2010
at 09:26 PM

Thanks Ed, I don't really read Free the Animal, so I've not seen them. Stephan over at Whole Health Source also has some great discussions of the synergeistic effects of A, D and K, which he argues are absolutely foundational to a tonne of things in terms of health (with vitamin D being a prohormone, it's not surprising. http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/search/label/fat-soluble%20vitamins?updated-max=2008-11-24T21%3A25%3A00-08%3A00&max-results=20

0
A048b66e08306d405986b6c04bf5e8e4

on December 27, 2013
at 03:32 AM

Actually, I would think that eating paleo would be very good for the teeth, since it's lower in sugar and starch than the SAD or most other diets, and since it's higher in fat and lower in phytic acid, it greater enables us to absorb vitamins A, D, E, and K, and magnesium, which are vital to tooth health, so it actually leads to BETTER teeth. Avoiding flouride toothpaste (crushed calcium tablets mixed with cinnamon and cloves work much better), morning oil pulling, and supplementing vitamin D are additionally beneficial.

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