Well, I have 9 Ways to Strengthen Your Tooth Enamel NATURALLY!
I am sharing this post today because we have spent the last two years focusing on this in our house, thanks to the damage that Celiac Disease has caused to my son’s teeth.
My husband also has tooth enamel issues (since he, too, has Celiac Disease that went undiagnosed for much of his life) …but he does not like me talking about his pearly…uh, whites. So just forget now that I even mentioned him here.
Only a couple of years ago, my son’s teeth were not in the best shape due to the tooth enamel defects that we have since learned can be caused by Celiac Disease.
When you are suffering from issues such as Celiac Disease, food intolerances, and conditions that tend to affect your nutrient absorption, you are at risk for de-mineralization of your tooth enamel. When the digestive system is impaired, it does not properly release vital minerals into the body for use by the teeth in building enamel.
So, unfortunately, my oldest son suffered from quite a few dental carries and other dental issues, despite being gluten-free and having impeccable tooth care skills.
And then, one morning, over two years ago, after he woke up with a horribly infected tooth and his cheeks looking like this…
And, after having to have the little bugger that was causing the nasty infection yanked out…(the penny is to show size comparison – oh. And don’t look if you’re squeamish),
I decided I was going to go on a mission to do something about it.
So after endless research, visits with holistic dentists, and copious note-taking…I wanted to share with you some of the important steps that you can take to try and re-mineralize your teeth (or your child’s) and strengthen the enamel.
And I also wanted to let you know that these steps have worked for us. My son’s (and husband’s…shh) teeth are in wonderful shape and health now.
This is just a basic breakdown – there is so much more and the science behind it is actually very fascinating, but I will just leave you with the basics of what can help in this process, since I am sure that is what you are looking for anyway.
Did you know that your tooth enamel is 96% mineral content and is the strongest substance in the human body?
Unfortunately, this enamel can easily be leeched out through poor diet, lack of nutrient absorption due to digestive damage, or from acidic environments in the mouth.
Acidic foods and drinks are the worst for tooth enamel. They slowly dissolve some of the minerals out of your enamel every day.
Some foods that are known to promote enamel loss and are important to avoid are:
- Coke and other Sodas/Soft Drinks – due, not only to the sugar, but also the phosphoric acid present
- Candy – an obvious one
- Processed Foods: Cookies, Muffins, Refined Sugars, High Fructose Corn Syrup - due to the starch that is difficult to break down and then causes more acid to be present in the mouth.
- Hydrogenated Oils and Margarines
- Coffee (Ack..I know-this one pains me)
- Alcohol and Tobacco
- Pasteurized Milk
- Artificial Sweeteners
- Breads and Cereals – it is the phytic acid that is present in these that blocks the absorption of minerals and causes the issues (sprouting your grains, nuts, and seeds will help to reduce this problem)
- Commercial Toothpastes – for many reasons, but sodium lauryl sulfate, glycerin, and flouride are just a few.
But, here is the good news. There are ways to actually strengthen the enamel and re-mineralize it. With a little dedication and some information tucked under your belt, you can begin the process NOW!
Steps known to promote enamel GROWTH and are therefore important to add into your diet and lifestyle are:
- Keep teeth clean using tooth soaps OR try a Homemade Toothpaste Recipe
- Encourage saliva production and keep the mouth moist – oil pulling is a good method for this – it helps eliminate toxic dental bacterial and also stimulates the salivary glands. Saliva helps to coat teeth and also contains trace minerals that will aid in the remineralization process
- Ensure that you have adequate levels of Vitamin D in your diet – D provides the proper balance of calcium and phosphorus to support mineralization. Pure fermented cod liver oil, krill oil, salmon, other fatty fish, and egg yolks are good sources. For Vegan sources – sunshine, UV-irradiated mushrooms, yeast, fortified foods, and D3 supplements are all options.
- Ensure that you have adequate levels of Vitamin K2 in your diet – K2 is essential for bone growth and mineral absorption. High Vitamin Butter (raw pastured is ideal) High Vitamin Butter Oil, Marrow, Egg Yolks, Chicken Liver Pate, and Hard Cheeses are good non-Vegan Sources. For Vegan sources- Supplements or Natto (requires an acquired palate) are options.
- Ensure that you have adequate levels of Vitamin C in your diet – C ensures strong gum health. Good sources are papaya, bell peppers, strawberries, broccoli, pineapple, brussels sprouts, kiwi, kale, and oranges.
- Homemade Bone Broth – true bone broths are full of calcium, gelatin, and minerals that are easily absorbed by the body for bone growth and are wonderful for re-mineralization and encourage enamel growth.
- Traditional Sea Salt - not processed table salt. True sea salt contains many trace minerals that are vital to bone and enamel growth.
- Traditional Fermented Foods – contain high levels of natural probiotics, which are wonderful for balancing out the good bacterial in the mouth. Good sources are homemade sauerkraut, kombucha, natto, pickled vegetables, kefir, and Water Kefir
- Add more Strawberries into your diet – not only because they are high in Vitamin C and antioxidants, but also because they have a natural exfoliating effect due to the malic acid content. The malic acid helps to whiten teeth while removing harmful tartar.
So…if you have suffered from dental/enamel problems because of absorption or diet-related issues, you may want to try some of the above steps.
It is not an overnight process. It takes time and diligence and consistency since your tooth enamel is in a constant state of flux between demineralizing and remineralizing. But the best part of the above steps is that every one of them also benefit your health in so many other ways as well!
Now..tell me. Have you suffered any dental issues that you think may be related to your food intolerances or Celiac Disease?
Kim Maes, CNC, AADP, known as the Allergy Free Food Coach, is a Certified Nutrition and Wellness Consultant and Certified in the Practical Application of Food Allergy Guidelines.. She is also the creator of the Cook It Allergy Free iPhone and iPad Apps and the Cook It Allergy Free website, where she shares her passion for teaching others how easy and delicious it can be to eat whole, pure allergy-friendly meals that the entire family will enjoy.