Keto Diet Shown To Improve Dental Health
By Lucy Wyndham
Although you may not think of a diet that focuses on weight loss as being beneficial to oral health, healthy foods may be the best oral care. In fact, researchers from the University of Freiburg in Germany have discovered that a low carb and low sugar diet that increases ketosis production can lower tartar build-up, cavities and gum disease by more than 50% to assure your smile is always camera ready.
The Oral Effect Of Ketosis
Ketosis is a normal metabolic process, where the body burns fat and increases the level of acids called ketones. Enhanced ketone production has been shown to have positive effects on oral health. The foods you choose – or more importantly don’t choose – can make a visit to the dentist far less painless.
One out of every two American adults over 30 has periodontal disease, according to recent findings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A study titled “Prevalence of Periodontitis in Adults in the US” estimates that 47.2 percent of American adults have mild to severe periodontitis or gum inflammation. To battle periodontitis, some people increase ketosis by eliminating carbs and sugars. By increasing the body’s production of ketones through a low carb, sugar-free diet, several oral afflictions are actually minimized. One study in Finland found that drinking one or two sugar-sweetened beverages a day was linked to a 31 percent higher risk of cavities. Lower sugar intake sugar minimizes the risk of gum disease as well.
Carbohydrates provide bacteria that produce acid and plaque in the mouth, which causes demineralization. This leads to cavities and tooth decay. By limiting consumption of carbs, the creation of acid erosion on the teeth are further decreased.
Managing Your Keto Levels
If your primary goal for integrating the ketogenic diet into your life is better oral health, achieving nutritional ketosis at 0.5 millimoles per litre is a good starting point. This may sound confusing, but using a monitoring tool like a ketone blood meter can help ensure your keto levels are balanced to enhance dental health. The only side effect of increased ketosis is halitosis, which is easily battled. Some people describe keto breath as having a metallic taste. To battle halitosis, simply increase your daily water intake as your body flushes bacteria that causes bad breath from your system through urination. Brushing or flossing after every meal is not only a healthy oral habit, but will combat breath issues related to ketosis. You can also eat less protein because as the body works hard to break down protein, bad breath can be exacerbated. The good news is that if you plan for a long-term keto diet, your body goes from just being in ketosis to becoming keto-adapted, and the chances are bad breath will go away. Of course, sugarless gum or mints are also an easy solution.
Nothing will ever replace daily brushing and flossing to keep your teeth and gums healthy. But managing your ketosis level is also paramount to maintain good oral health. Minimizing sugars and carbohydrates can help achieve a winning smile for life.