In our modern world, where processed foods dominate the supermarket aisles and convenience often trumps nutrition, many individuals are seeking ways to reconnect with their ancestral roots when it comes to their diet. One such approach is the Paleo diet. It is the diet inspired by the eating habits of our Stone Age ancestors.
Since the paleo diet has gained popularity, several inventions, such as Paleo and gluten-free cakes and other food items, have taken place. While the Paleo diet has some potential health benefits, it’s worth exploring how this way of eating impacts our dental health. After all, dental health is also a crucial health subject for a healthy lifestyle. So let’s dive into the world of ancestral eating and its effect on our teeth.
To know the impacts of the Paleo diet, one must know what this diet is composed of. The presumed diet of our Paleolithic ancestors inspires the paleo diet. They lived around 2.6 million to 10,000 years ago. Many theories have emerged regarding this diet. The most prominent one is that our bodies are genetically adapted to thrive on the types of foods consumed during that era. This diet contained whole, unprocessed foods such as lean meats, fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. It excludes grains, legumes, dairy, refined sugars, and juices.
Everyone knows that sugar is the main cause of dental problems. The paleo diet has low sugar content, which highly benefits the individual’s dental health following this diet. With low sugar being the driving factor, there are other factors also that impact your dental health when you are on a Paleo diet. Some of the most common ones are:
As mentioned above, the Paleo diet has low sugar content, which means that when you are on this diet, your body has decreased sugar consumption. Excessive sugar consumption is a leading cause of dental problems such as tooth decay and cavities. You can enhance your oral health by sugar intake, adherents of the Paleo diet.
The paleo diet contains nutrient-dense food such as fruits, vegetables, fish, and lean meats. These foods have essential minerals and vitamins that aid in maintaining healthy teeth and gums. For instance, fruits and vegetables are rich in vitamins A and C. At the same time, fish and lean meats are excellent sources for tissue repair and maintenance as they are rich in protein. Both these factors promote healthy gums and strong teeth.
To maintain healthy teeth and have good jawbone strength, it’s important to have good chewing habits. Earlier, there was a lack of processed and soft food. As a result, our ancestors consumed a diet that required more chewing. As you know, the Paleo diet contains whole, unprocessed foods. To eat such foods, more effort to chew is required. This sort of increased chewing promotes better jawbone strength as it increases blood flow to the gums.
The modern diet heavily consists of processed foods and sugar drinks. Consuming these items regularly leads to increased acidity in the mouth. Acidity in the mouth can cause several dental problems starting from eroded tooth enamel, leading to tooth sensitivity and decay. On the other hand, the Paleo diet help in balancing the oral pH level, which reduces the risk of dental erosion and thus preserving the tooth enamel.
It’s true that there are so many benefits of incorporating the Paleo diet into your routine. However, eliminating entire food groups like dairy and grains can lead to nutritional imbalances. For instance, dairy products are excellent sources of vitamin D and calcium. They are also essential to have strong teeth and bones. Therefore it’s important to strike a balance between these elements to have optimum results.
There is no denying that the Paleo diet, with its focus on whole, unprocessed foods and reduced sugar consumption, offers potential benefits for dental health. Simply put, you can have healthier teeth and gums by minimizing sugar intake, increasing nutrient density, promoting jawbone strength, and reducing acidity. As much as the Paleo diet is a boon for dental health, it’s also important to strike a balance between ancestral eating and modern nutritional knowledge to ensure optimal oral and overall health.
Dentistry in Canterbury helps you navigate ancestral eating and modern nutritional knowledge to have the best of both worlds. It is also crucial to note that each person’s dental health is unique. Therefore, it’s essential to consult with a dental professional who can provide solutions specifically for your needs.