Cavities. No one likes them. No one looks forward to the visit to the dentist’s and hearing the words – YOU. HAVE. A. CAVITY. 😰 *cue dramatic music* What’s worse is what comes after – the tooth drilling and filling. Extra pain and extra money. BUT, what if there was a way to reverse all that and cure them? No pain and no goodbyes to your hard earned cha-chings. 🤑
Contrary to prior belief that your teeth can only be prevented from cavities, it can actually be healed by a process called remineralization. Remineralization is an organic process that works to help repair enamel before a cavity forms. In fact, according to a study published in the British Medical Journal, cavities and tooth decay could potentially be reversed with diet. 😱
A study was performed on 62 children with cavities, and they were divided into three different diet groups. Group 1 ate a standard diet plus oatmeal (rich in phytic acid). Group 2 consumed a normal diet and supplemented it with vitamin D. Group 3 ate a grain-free diet and took vitamin D.
The results found that Group 1 who had a diet high in grains and phytic acid had an increase in cavities. Group 2 had improvements in cavities and less form. Group 3, who followed a grain-free diet with nutrient-rich foods like vegetables 🥕, fruits 🍉, meat 🥩, and milk 🥛 and took vitamin D, saw the greatest improvements — nearly all cavities were healed. This study, along with the backing of many doctors and dentists, proves we have been misinformed how cavities can be reversed naturally.
The acids that get triggered by sugars from food and drink we eat can be neutralized by the saliva in our mouth (so for all you droolers out there, consider it a blessing 🤭). However, your saliva can only be helpful to a certain extent and decay can be accelerated further if you don’t take measures to retain your oral hygiene. Remineralization can be promoted by certain changes in lifestyle such as:-
1) Diet – what you need to avoid!
Fortunately, a decaying or broken tooth has the ability to heal itself. The dental pulp contains cells called odontoblasts, which form new dentin if the diet is good. The most important step is to avoid foods that contain phytic acids 😯. They convert into phytates which aren’t absorbable and take calcium from the body, hence decaying the teeth. Nuts, seeds, and grains are main contributors of phytic acid. 🥜🌾
The rumors are true – sugar is bad for your teeth. They’re highly acidic and interact with the bacteria in your mouth by breaking down your tooth enamel. Honey and table sugar are the worst culprits. 💔🍫
Here’s what you can eat –
- Animal-rich foods like bone broth, meat, fish, and eggs. 🥚
- Raw and cooked vegetables, especially green leafy vegetables.
- Fruit, one piece daily early morning. 🍎
- Foods high in healthy fats like coconut oil, avocado, olives, and fish.
- Nuts, seeds and beans (that have been sprouted).
- Fermented grains (in moderation), such as true sourdough bread (or even better, no grains at all). You can buy raw flours and breads. 🍞
2) Increase Calcium and Vitamin D intake
Eat more calcium-rich foods – not dairy. Although it sounds contradictory, lactose can increase acidity in your mouth. Opt for options such as almond or soy milk where you can reap the benefits of calcium without the lactose .😍 Also, consider probiotics. They promote remineralization by replacing germs with good bacteria. If you lack Vitamin D, you can take supplements to support dental healing. Cod liver oil capsules benefit your oral health and support remineralization! 💪
3) Oil Pulling
Oil pulling, also known as “kavala” or “gundusha,” is an ancient Ayurvedic dental technique that involves swishing a tablespoon of oil in your mouth on an empty stomach for around 20 minutes. This action supposedly draws out toxins in your body, primarily to improve oral health but it also improves your overall health. 😮
Coconut oil is a great ingredient for oil pulling as it contains healthy fats and antifungal properties with the added bonus of not tasting bad. The best time to oil pull is first thing in the morning right after you get out of bed. Don’t let the 20-minute time frame deter you. However, if 20 minutes is too long or tiresome, 5-10 minutes is good enough. 🤷 It is recommended that you spit the spent oil in the trash rather than into the sink, as an accumulation of oil could pose problems for plumbing. Immediately afterward, rinse your mouth out with warm water. Use salt water for added antimicrobial properties. Finally, brush your teeth as normal. 😁
4) Activated Charcoal
Using activated charcoal in your daily brushing routine will provide greater benefit to your teeth. It kills bacteria and whitens your teeth. Dipping your toothpaste in activated charcoal and brushing your teeth daily for a period of just two weeks, will make a noticeable difference! 🤩 Baking soda is also a good alternative.
Disclaimer: Some dentists are of the opinion that while activated charcoal makes your teeth whiter momentarily, it can cause more damage to your teeth in the long run as it wears away the enamel.
Written and Researched by Neha Shelly