by Dr. Pooneh Ramezani, DDS
With social media and influencers changing the way we get our information, we are bombarded daily with posts about trendy diets such as keto, paleo, vegan, whole 30, low carb, intermittent fasting, etc.
This proves the obvious fact that what we eat affects our health, but did you know that what we eat affects your oral health?
Recent studies and research have shown that there is a link between your overall health and your oral health.
Teeth and gum diseases could have an adverse impact on our overall health and could be the cause of systemic health issues such as cardiovascular diseases, stroke, diabetes, low-birth weight and/or premature birth.
Studies: Reducing Inflammation & Gingivitis
A study from German researchers has shown that an anti-inflammatory diet may help get rid of gingivitis, which is an early stage gum disease.
This study that was published in Spring of 2018 concluded that after being on an anti-inflammatory diet for 30 days, participants had significantly less gum bleeding (which is the first sign of gum disease), a marked increase in Vitamin D levels as well as weight loss.
Another noteworthy diet that is recommended by physicians and nutritionists is the anti-inflammatory diet. They recommend this diet to people that suffer from autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.
This diet consists of plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, plant-based proteins such as nuts and beans, healthy fats like olive oil, and fatty fish that are rich in omega-3 such as salmon, tuna, and sardines.
It also requires eliminating processed foods, fried foods, sugary drinks, and fast food in general. By eating these foods that cause inflammation, you could actually accelerate the rate of inflammation in your body.
What is inflammation and its effect on oral care?
What is inflammation and why is inflammation an issue?
Inflammation is the first sign of body’s reaction to fight off an infection, protect against injury, and shield against irritation.
Inflammation in the body is characterized by swelling, redness, heat, and pain. At first, inflammation aims to heal the body, but if it stays as a chronic condition, it has been linked to heart disease and Alzheimer’s.
Gum disease is considered an inflammatory disease. Periodontitis (the advance stage of gum disease) affects over 42% of U.S. adults over 30 according to American Dental Association.
Food and beverages you consume daily affect your oral health. The bacteria that is already present in your mouth convert the sugar and starch in these items into acids that attack the enamel of your teeth and cause tooth decay.
When the plaque builds up on your teeth and the surrounding structures, it could cause inflammation in your gums. If untreated, it becomes more severe, leading to gum recession, loose teeth, and bleeding or puffy gums.
The daily products that you use also affect your oral biome. If there are artificial colors, sweeteners, alcohol, and other chemicals present in your daily oral care products, it could make the inflammation even worse.
It is very important to read labels and avoid ingredients that could cause and worsen inflammation.
Dr. Brite products also don’t have any alcohol that could cause dryness of the mouth and could worsen gum disease and pain.
Remember for a healthier body, you should have a healthy smile. Oral care is self-care.
To your health,
Pooneh Ramezani, DDS
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