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    Teeth are Alive and Need Their Vitamins

    February 12, 2011 by Brandy Vencel

    What a lame title. I am running low on ideas today, and I’m spending another afternoon pretending not to flirt with reading more of Cure Tooth Decaywithout my husband. Yesterday, I flipped through the book whenever I walked by it and read the various charts.

    Charts don’t count, right?

    My dear husband, if you could just stay home until we’re done reading, that’d be great.

    Ahem.

    Even though it is nice when nutritional booksjump right in to The Cure for whatever it is they are claiming to cure, I’ve found I retain a lot more when the author explains How Things Work.

    Take teeth, for instance. I have always thought of teeth in the way I think of hair and nails. They’re practically dead! Just like hair and nails, nutrition can effect them, but I didn’t think of teeth as existing in some sort of harmony (or disharmony) with the rest of my body. I mean, I couldgobaldor lose a nail and not be in bad shape, right?

    Well, teeth apparently aren’t like that. If you don’t have a good diet that lacks essential vitamins then it isn’t just your cells and body that suffer but your teeth too. If you feel you don”t get enough vitamins in your diet then look at these vitamins and supplements in Canada.

    Now, if you took real science in school, perhaps you already knew that. I, unfortunately, went to a school where they did what Esolen says is needed in order to kill the imagination–they turned all science into biology and all biology into ecology.

    I didn’t even know the lymph system existed until I took my first science course in college.

    But I digress.

    Author Ramiel Nagel uses the work of dentists Ralph Steinman and John Leonora to explain how other parts of the body are actually responsible for tooth health:

    Cure Tooth Decay: Heal and Prevent Cavities with Nutrition, Second EditionThe hypothalamus in our brain regulates the relationship between our nervous system and our glandular system through the pituitary gland. Drs. Leonora and Steinman found that the hypothalamus communicates with glands in our jaw called the parotid glands via parotid hormone releasing factor. When the parotid gland is stimulated by the hypothalamus it releases parotid hormone which triggers a movement of mineral rich dental lymph through microscopic channels in our teeth. This mineral-rich fluid cleans teeth and remineralizes them. When a cavity-causing diet is ingested, the hypothalamus stops telling the parotid gland to release the hormone that circulates the dental remineralizing fluid. Over time, this interruption of mineral-rich fluid results in tooth destruction, what we know as tooth decay. That the parotid gland is in charge of tooth remineralization explains to me why a small portion of the population is immune to tooth decay, even with a relatively poor diet. They were born with a strong parotid gland.

    Chapter Two deals primarily with summarizing the research findings of the dentist Dr. Weston Price, who is probably best known due to the work of the Weston A. Price Foundation, which promotes traditional food, farming, and healing. Around the time that Si ended up in the hospital (summer 2009), a friend had lent me Price’s definitive tome, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. I read most of it, but I was so busy dealing with Si’s recovery that I finally gave it back to her–I felt like it had overstayed its welcome in my home! How I wish I could finish reading it!

    I am contenting myself with the primer given in the second chapter.

    If you are not familiar with Dr. Price, I’ll introduce you briefly. Dr. Price was first appointed as the research director of the Nation Dental Association (which became the American Dental Association) in 1915.While carrying out the duties of his post, hetraveled the world in the 1930s, studying the characteristics of the people groups who were immune to tooth decay.

    Yes, you read that right.

    Immune from tooth decay. He found multiple populations that suffered from less than 1% tooth decay. This includes the Australian Aborigines, who had 100% immunity. Cure Tooth Decay goes into this in detail.

    Dr. Price found that tooth health was dependent upon six primary nutrients: the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and what he called the “X-factor” (known today as K2), plus the minerals calcium and phosphorous. All four of the fat-soluble vitamins are found only in animal products, including dairy products. Nagel tells us,

    Fat-soluble vitamins are essential for our physical health, not just because they provide nutrients to the body, but precisely because they are activating substances that help our bodies utilize the minerals present in our diets.

    Nagel doesn’t mention this, but I recently read that vitamin K2 is protective. So, for instance, if you are taking in a lot of D and A–too much, perhaps–K2 keeps you from actually reaching toxic levels. (I wish I couldrediscover my source on that. I knowI read it somewhere…)Not sure how that happens, but that’s what I read. It is already widely known that vitaminA protects against vitaminD toxicity.

    What I found particularly interesting is that, so far, the problem seems to be two-fold as far as teeth are concerned.

    1. Not eating enough of the right foods
      • Even though the fat-soluble vitamins are prevalent in animal products, they are usually concentrated in organ meat and pastured raw milk and eggs, which most Americans no longer eat
      • A traditional source of calcium is bone broth, which many families no longer make
      • Vegetables contain pro-vitamin-A and K1, both which are only minimally converted into their useful form by the human body, so the emphasis on eating more vegetables doesn’t help heal the teeth
    2. Not raising our food correctly
      • A lot of research is finding that the industrial methods of raising animals result in huge nutrition deficits. For instance, pastured milk is higher in vitamins A and E than grain- and soy-silage-fed milk (probably because cows are designed by God to eat grass).
      • Grain-feeding birds results in eggs of inferior quality. Pastured birds, which eat a variety of grasses and seeds as well as bugs and insects, lay eggs that are higher in vitamins A, D, and E–and by higher I mean much more than double.

    It’s funny because I sometimes read something on nutrition and get overwhelmed. It starts to sound like a lot of work, or a big balancing act. But really, this book, at least, sounds like it all boils down to eating like our great-great-grandparents ate, which includes raising the food the way they did.

    With that said, I am highly interested in the author’s protocol for healing cavities which already exist.

    In other words: We have cavities. Now what?

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    9 Comments

  • Reply Kelly February 14, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    Oh, no — I’ve given the wrong impression! I’ve given up white sugar and HFCS. I’m not a big fruit eater either, and I never sweeten my tea or coffee, but I do use maple syrup, honey, dehydrated cane juice, and blackstrap molasses on occasion, mostly in recipes like ketchup or hot chocolate or the occasional festive baked goods. Unfortunately when I have to eat away from home and can’t cook from scratch, it’s nearly impossible to avoid HFCS.

    Anyway — it sometimes feels like deprivation, especially every Sunday after church and the frequent get-togethers associated with music recitals and choir performances… but I haven’t totally forsaken sugar in every form.

    Sorry! *blush*

  • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts February 13, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    Kelly, I must say I admire you for giving up sugar! My primary sugar intake was always in my coffee (I’m not a big fruit eater or sugary snacker–I like savory foods), so I’ve certainly cut back in the last nine months or so since I quit drinking it. But I really can’t imagine completely giving up sugar. Incredible!

    And I am sure there are other positives–it is always harder to imagine what would-have-been rather than seeing damage and watching it heal. But…always better not to have the damage in the first place, no?

    Mangoes, Amazing story of your teeth! You and Kelly both are definitely confirming to me the things that I am reading.

    I would say that our family has been on a Real Food diet for about three years or so now. But what I am realizing from this book is that I haven’t always focused where my priorities should be in order to actually see teeth healing (such as extra fat-soluble vitamins). I am pretty sure my two oldest got cavities during the time that they were on the GFCF diet. I just really didn’t know how to get enough calcium and phosphorous into a child without milk products, and though I made bone broth back then, it never dawned on me that they could drink it on days I wasn’t making soup!

    I feel like I’m learning so much, and I’m excited to see if we continue to see teeth healing in the next six months before the next appointment.

  • Reply ~The Mangos~ February 12, 2011 at 10:20 pm

    Love your blog post. I have experienced this myself. Went to the dentist with a huge cavity, could almost put a half a sandwich in it. It didn’t hurt. The dentist, who is familiar with Weston Price, said that I should be screaming in pain because of the size of the cavity. He said that it was already healing. We did opt to fill it because of the size and the annoyance of food getting caught in it. He also pointed out several teeth that had HAD cavities and they had healed. I do watch my diet and eat a Weston Price style diet. I also take Biodent from Standard Process which gives the minerals and things that teeth need to heal. I also later broke a tooth chomping on a popcorn kernel. They did a repair but it wasn’t great. The tooth hurt off and on while chewing and I felt a piece wiggle while brushing. The tooth felt fine in about 6 months. About a year and a half later a chunk fell out. It was the piece that had cracked before. It didn’t hurt at all. The tooth had healed and the broken part simply came out. A blessing. No pain. God knew what he was doing when he created our bodies

  • Reply Kelly February 12, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    LOL, yes that would be awesome. I’m impressed because I gave up sugar a decade ago and the only good I’ve gotten from it is that I’m not diabetic yet. Which is good, of course, just that it’s a negative good, if you see what I mean.
    🙂

  • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts February 12, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    Jen, Okay. We’re really going to do that someday soon! I feel like I can make plans since I finally went to Dr. Hansen and had her fix my cold/lung issues I’ve been having for the past couple months. Why I didn’t go sooner, I don’t know.

    Ahem.

    About the butter oil…We buy Green Pasture combo gel that is part fermented codliver oil and part pastured butter oil from Azure. You have to know the catalog number, however, and type it into your shopping cart. They do not have it in the search engine. If you don’t have a catalog on hand, they will email a .pdf file to you.

    Another option is to buy ghee from Pure Indian Foods. I haven’t checked yet to see if Azure carries it, but I’ve thought about requesting it if they don’t.

  • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts February 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    Kelly, I just wish you said that her teeth healed by eating ice cream. Now that would be awesome. 🙂

    I am going to try the protocol and hope my fillings fall out.

    Of course, I don’t think the author promises anything like that. He’s mainly talking about diagnosed cavities that have not yet been drilled by a dentist. (So far at least.)

  • Reply Jennifer February 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. You know. 🙂

  • Reply Jennifer February 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    K2 protects against toxic levels of fat-soluble vitamins!? So awesome. I do love how God designed our bodies. Do you know a good source for getting the x-factor? No one local carries high-vitamin butter oil. I did try buying raw butter once. I will not do that again. It was nasty after a day, and it cost me 11 dollars.

    Come by with your kiddos anytime to play and borrow my Nutrition and Degenerative Diseases. It’s here waiting for you. We can swap for any one of your fascinating reads.

  • Reply Kelly February 12, 2011 at 5:02 am

    I have a friend who actually had fillings fall out because she gave up sugar and her teeth healed.

    I wish it were that easy for everyone, but still — that was the first time I’d ever heard that teeth can heal and it was encouraging.

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