All you have to do is avoid sugar, brush & floss, & see your dentist twice a year and you'll have a happy mouth, right?? Wrong. Despite diligent brushing and regular dental visits, pesky cavities still manage to sneak their way into our lives.
Truth is that there are hidden culprits lurking in our everyday habits & diet that contribute to the formation of cavities & tooth decay.
What Really Causes Cavities?
The most commonly known causes of cavities and tooth decay are:
- Unlucky genetics
- High sugar consumption
- Poor dental hygiene
All of those are important factors. But those aren't the only things that determine your oral health.
Turns out it's more than just sugar in our diets that harm our tooth enamel.
Phytic Acid & Tooth Decay
In the book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Weston A. Price, Dr. Price spends 10 years traveling to 14 different countries. He found remarkable correlations between diet and oral health.
"[Dr. Price] observed perfect dental arches, minimal tooth decay, high immunity to tuberculosis and overall excellent health in those groups of people who ate their indigenous foods. He found when these people were introduced to modernized foods, such as white flour, white sugar, refined vegetable oils and canned goods, signs of degeneration quickly became quite evident. Dental caries, deformed jaw structures, crooked teeth, arthritis and a low immunity to tuberculosis became rampant amongst them."
Ramiel Nagel, author of Cure Tooth Decay: Remineralize Cavities and Repair Your Teeth Naturally with Good Food, states:
Your teeth can heal naturally because they were never designed to decay in the first place! There is a natural way to take control of your dental health by changing the food that you eat.
The biggest culprit these two researchers and authors found was phytic acid.
Phytic acid is found in grains, legumes & beans, nuts, seeds, and some fruits & vegetables. It bonds with iron, zinc, and calcium to form phosphorous.
This results in our bodies absorbing less iron, zinc, and calcium; key vitamins & minerals we need for healthy teeth & bones.
In addition, modern farming practices that uses fertilizer with high amounts of phosphorous results in higher amounts of phytic acid in our food.
Increased amounts of phytic acid in our diet causes higher rates of tooth decay, mineral deficiencies, and osteoporosis.
We can't and shouldn't avoid phytic acid altogether.
It's in a lot of foods that have other health benefits including nuts (almonds, walnuts, Brazil nuts, etc), pinto beans, corn, wheat, oats, chickpeas, yams, brown rice, lentils, corn, and strawberries. See a more comprehensive list here.
However, by changing how we prepare these foods, we can neutralize & lower the amounts of phytic acid we consume.
Soaking, fermenting, or sprouting grains, nuts, and seeds can help break down phytic acid, reducing its inhibitory effects on mineral absorption
Here are some tips to reduce phytic acid:
- Soak brown rice for 8 hours in hot water with a little vinegar or lemon juice in a mason jar before cooking.
- Soak nuts for 18 hours and then dehydrate at low temperatures.
- Soak beans for 12 hours and rinse several times before cooking.
- Opt for sourdough bread over yeasted bread.
- Seeds should be soaked and roasted.
- Add more rye flour to your diet.
How to Remineralize Teeth
Modern dentistry practices tells us that once teeth start decaying, there's nothing we can do to remineralize them so we need to fill the cavities, drill the root canals, and pull the offenders. Bones are able to heal and regenerate. So why not teeth?
There's actually a lot of evidence that teeth can regenerate, remineralize, and heal!
Here are some tips to naturally remineralize teeth:
- Consult with a biological dentist
- Reduce phytic acid in your diet
- Reduce sugar & sugar substitutes in your diet
- Increase healthy fats including fish oil, cod liver oil, coconut oil, olive oil, avodaco oil, pastured & cultured butter, etc.
- Take supplements that support healthy teeth including Calcium, Vitamin D, Vitamin A, Potassium, and Zinc
- Avoid these harmful ingredients in your oral care products
- Artificial Colors & Sweeteners
- Learn more about these ingredients here
- Use oral care products that don't have those ingredients
- Make whitening and remineralizing oral care products:
- Use tooth healthy ingredients in your products
Sources & More Info
- Dentistry Articles from Weston A. Price
- Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Weston A. Price
- Cure Tooth Decay: Remineralize Cavities and Repair Your Teeth Naturally with Good Food by Ramiel Nagel
More Posts on Holistic Oral Health:
- DIY Recipes
- How to Use
- Essential Oils for Oral Health
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