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    Tooth Decay and Germ Theory

    February 10, 2011 by Brandy Vencel

    I mentioned back when I reviewed that vaccine book that I am interested in alternatives to Louis Pasteur’s germ theory. Someday, perhaps I’ll read a book on the subject. For now, I’m noticing alternatives being mentioned in books that I’m reading about nutrition–possibly because nutrition is all about making the terrain immune to germs in the first place, rather than fighting germs as a primary solution to health problems.

    Cure Tooth Decay: Heal and Prevent Cavities with Nutrition, Second EditionLast night, Si and I started reading Ramiel Nagel’s Cure Tooth Decay. I found mention of the issue throughout the Introduction and First Chapter, and I thought I’d share some of it here. Dentistry, like most modern medicine, is based upon the idea that Bacteria is Our Enemy and Must be Destroyed. The idea is that bacteria cause cavities, and that if we could just get rid of them, we’d get rid of dental caries. So we brush our teeth, rinse our teeth, floss our teeth, all in an effort to get rid of bacteria that cause cavities and the food that it might thrive on if it survives the brushing and rinsing.

    I thought this was a good point:

    Bacteria exist everywhere and are nearly impossible to get rid of completely. More than 400 different bacteria are now associated with dental disease, and many more have yet to be discovered. Since bacteria are a part of life, with some good ones and some bad ones and trillions of them everywhere, dentistry’s approach to eliminate bacteria seems helpless.

    So far, the most interesting thing I’ve learned from the first chapter is concerning the theory of dental cavities–where do they come from? Why do we get them in the first place?

    From what I understand from the book, what is accepted dental theory today is based loosely upon the work of a Dr. W. D. Miller in the late 1800s. He performed some experiments upon extracted teeth that caused him to believe that bacteria form acids that “dissolve” teeth–in other words, cause tooth decay. What is overlooked in today’s dental theory is what else Miller learned:

    In simple terms, Dr. Miller believed a dense strong tooth would “resist indefinitely” an attack from acid, whether it be from bacteria or from food. Meanwhile, a non-dense tooth would succumb quickly to any sort of acid, from bacteria or otherwise. Dr. Miller also wrote that, “The invasion of the micro-organisms is always preceded by the extraction of lime salts.” In plain terms, the tooth loses its mineral density first (lime salts), and then microorganisms can cause trouble.

    If I understand the first chapter correctly, what will follow in the remainder of the book will deal not so much with bacteria, but with mineralization. Dr. Miller himself said that a strong, firmly mineralized tooth would be immune to the effects of bacteria, so let’s learn to be immune, right?

    I’m looking forward to reading more, and I’m having trouble waiting until my husband gets home.

    Last year, Daughter A. went to the dentist and had seven cavities. Instead of treating them (and it was debatable whether or not she needed treatment), we looked at the information Ramiel Nagel offers over at the Cure Tooth Decay site. We acted on that information, and three of the cavities have since healed. There is still concern about the other four, of course, but I figure we were working from an incomplete picture, having read the website and not the book. I look forward to attacking the other four using Nagel’s full protocol.

    Whatever that is.

    If my husband would just come home from work early so I could read this book…

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  • Reply GretchenJoanna February 12, 2011 at 3:01 am

    Well, yes, she did require orthodontia, though that was later, of course; if the teeth had remineralized at all I guess we wouldn’t have known, as they had been capped. When she was an adult she got permanent crowns.

    I read an interesting book on a related subject when the children were little: Why Raise Ugly Kids? by Hal Huggins, an orthodontist. He stresses the consumption of animal fat, and gave parents a discount if they switched from margarine to butter and gave the patient plenty of it. It was his experience that butter helped the teeth straighten faster. πŸ™‚
    He also talked a lot about sleeping position…parents were supposed to train children to sleep on their backs so that their facial bones would not get pushed out of shape.

  • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts February 12, 2011 at 12:26 am

    GJ–I agree we cannot control everything, and I appreciate the reminder. πŸ™‚

    I was snooping a little more through the book this afternoon while writing a post and did come across something non-nutritional. Did your child also have a bad bite and/or require orthodontics? Apparently a bad bite can change the flow of the fluid from the parotid gland, keeping the teeth from remineralizing themselves, even when diet is good. I’m just curious. I believe the book has an entire section on utilizing orthodontic correction to assist tooth health.

  • Reply GretchenJoanna February 11, 2011 at 10:40 pm

    Yes, it’s not likely our case was due to diet; the dentist thought it must have been a fever that I had when my child was in utero, but I hadn’t had one, so it remained a mystery.
    It did cause me to do some reading about mineral absorption, and I remember finding out, for example, that if the diet is too high in protein calcium is not well absorbed, and if there is not enough protein in the diet, calcium is not well absorbed. πŸ™‚
    My first child, and I thought I could control everything. It was a lesson for me in doing my best, but also trusting God. And I don’t write about it to discourage anyone from being diligent about nutrition. I didn’t stop being super aware, and I kept learning more, and am still learning.
    I think self-education in this area is necessary for any parent, or any person, for that matter, because if you don’t read about nutrition you will just get what’s in the airwaves at the moment, almost always dumbed-down and reduced so as to be almost worse than complete ignorance.

  • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts February 11, 2011 at 8:22 pm

    Karyn, I think you would love the book! I hope she has your teeth, too. I have always thought you had nice teeth! πŸ™‚

    Rebekah, Thank you for the suggestions! I have seen “The Beautiful Truth” and I totally agree it was an eye-opener. I actually put “Food Matters” in our Netflix queue; it’s available for instant play, so we might watch it tonight. Thanks for the suggestion!

    GJ, The author does say that some things are beyond the scope of nutrition, so he doesn’t claim to solve all problems. I have never heard of adult teeth coming in bad, so I wonder if you were in a special situation? So far, this is what I know: he believes the most important nutrients for happy teeth are the fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K2–only available in meat/dairy which is why vegans tend to end up with bad teeth) plus the minerals calcium and phosphorous. I have already decided based upon his writing that, as well as we try to eat, I do not get enough calcium for sure. πŸ™ I’ll try to blog more about it as I go through it…

  • Reply GretchenJoanna February 11, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    I’ll be very interested to hear more about the book. When my oldest got her secondary molars they were all brown and soft and had to be capped immediately, and I was appalled and crushed, because I had given her the best diet I could think of, and was myself well-nourished during my pregnancy and breastfeeding, etc. I began to read about mineralization, and it was complicated!

  • Reply Rebekah February 11, 2011 at 1:45 am

    You should watch the documentaries “Food Matters” and “The Beautiful Truth” both address this issue, the latter one more so. Very eye opening stuff.

  • Reply Karyn February 11, 2011 at 1:35 am

    Very interesting post Brandy! Just took H to dentist last week for the 1st time (she’s 20 months so it wasn’t a real serious visit). I have been blessed with teeth that are highly resistant to cavities and hopefully she will have the same genetic disposition but cavities are still a concern of mine. I’ve never heard of them healing on thier own. I’ll have to check out this book!

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