Also affected by what we eat
Yesterday, I was scrolling through the McDougall Moment series of my friend Dr. John McDougall—and found one about teeth (featured below). As expected, he talked about the role of diet in the health of our teeth—encouraging us to eat more complex carbs: starches, fruits and vegetables. He points out that populations that eat this way (with little or no added sugar) tend to have healthy teeth and gums.
He also points out that most of us adult Americans were raised on the unhealthy Western diet that is loaded with added sugars and very light on the complex carbs. So, what can we do to repair the damage?
What about flossing? Like me, John says that he’s not much of a flosser, but he does advocate the use of the special toothbrush that enables you to clean between the teeth.
In my case, I was told by a dentist in Tennessee almost 20 years ago that I needed to have a very costly and painful GUM job. I decided to get a second opinion—from my old dentist in New York. He told me about Stimudents, the special toothpicks that really get down between the teeth—cleaning out the debris and massaging the gums.
I kept them in my car and used them religiously twice a day during my driving commute from New Jersey to my Ralph Lauren office in New York. Later that dentist told me that I was living proof that those things work—if used properly.
Fifteen years later, my current dentist here in CT influenced me to start using a water-pik—after realizing that I simply wasn’t going to floss. For me, the Water-Pik is much easier than flossing and probably does a much better job. Another eight years later and I never did have that GUM job that the Tennessee dentist told me was urgent.
The bottom line. The combination of consistently eating 4Leaf, brushing regularly and using my Water-Pik twice a day is getting the job done for this man of 67 years. Now for the 3-minute McDougall Moment.
Dr. John McDougall — on the topic of teeth & gums
Dr. Sally, my local dentist—this one’s for you!
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—J. Morris Hicks…blogging daily at HealthyEatingHealthyWorld.com
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