Monday, May 6, 2013

tooth decay

Poor Youngest did NOT enjoy his trip to the dentist this morning. I'd been thinking about taking him for a while, but since my husband lost his job a week and a half ago and we have only a few days' more coverage for health benefits, it was time. I very much want to try curing his tooth decay with diet before trying conventional dental treatment. But I wanted to know from the dentist just how bad the decay was. I didn't get a solid answer this morning, but we've been referred to a pediatric specialist. With the appointment not until July, I figure we've got two months to do our best to improve his teeth.

I mentioned Cure Tooth Decay earlier. It's pretty compelling, and I figure it's worth a try before putting my not-even-two-year-old under general anesthesia and drilling bigger holes in his teeth. The main thrust of the book is that the explanation for tooth decay dentists are currently working with is wrong. It is sugar that primarily causes tooth decay, but not because it feeds the bacteria in mouth, which produce acid that harms your teeth, as is currently believed. Rather, it's the spikes in blood sugar that mess with your ratio of calcium to phosphorus in your blood, which in turn weakens your teeth. Also, the lectins and phytates in grains prevents you from absorbing the minerals necessary to repair teeth. And get this: whole grains are worse for your teeth than refined grains, which have less phytic acid. White rice and white flour apparently cause fewer problems than whole grains. Which has me thinking. Pretty much all gluten-free grains are whole grains.

A number of dentists worked in the early part of the 20th century on exploring the nutritional causes of tooth decay and curing it through diet. One of them, Dr. Weston Price was able to cure children's tooth decay with just one super-nutritious meal per day. He also travelled the world looking for traditional cultures with the best dental, reproductive and general health and exploring their diets. Although the cultures he explored ate a wide variety of foods, what they had in common were generous quantities of fat-soluble vitamins A, D and K.

So, based on the recommendations in Cure Tooth Decay and our wariness of eliminating any more foods from our diet, here is what we're going to try to do:

  • eat eggs in the morning instead of oatmeal
  • eat soups and stews with homemade bone broth, meat and vegetables for lunch instead of eggs
  • eat stuff we normally eat for dinner (mostly meat and vegetables, sometimes rice and vegetables)
  • supplement with fermented cod liver oil and royal butter blend (once we can find a Green Pastures distributor in Canada) instead of Halibut Liver Oil with synthetic Vitamin A and D-Drops, which we're currently giving him; this will provide vitamins A, D and K
  • as much as possible, eat only soaked and/or soured grains
  • eat more mineral and vitamin C-rich vegetables like leafy greens and cruciferous veggies
  • eat more fermented foods (my sauerkraut is coming along nicely but isn't quite ready yet)
  • as much as possible, only serve fruits or other sweets with fat and protein to slow the blood sugar spike
  • use more honey and maple syrup than refined sugar for sweetening
So that's the plan. I hope we're able to implement it without too much difficulty, especially given that there will likely be big changes for us coming up soon.

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