I think it is !
We are not trying to single out 811 as giving teeth problems, we are just here to give solid advice on how to take care of your teeth. There are plenty of diets that wreak havoc on the teeth and many people have bad teeth because of it (example)
HI Fellow primates :)
Thought with the last discussion with Stephen on teeth and hearing story of others having issues with their teeth that it would be good to post this discussion for 4 reasons,
1) as a warning to people on the diet to take care of their teeth properly.
2) Possibly we can change the recommendations that we give on this website (such as the LFRV pamphlet) to something like Frederic Patenaude or Don Bennet recommends. Which in short is something to kill bacteria to keep it in check. I have heard many people say that water just does not cut it from them and once they started using a good toothpaste or something else it really helped their teeth and gums (I am one of them).
3) to open the discussion to ask people what their hygiene protocol is to hear what people have to say so we can possibly come up with the best recommendations. Maybe I am the only one that brushing with water worked badly who knows (but I don' think so :)
Please answer the following
-How long you have been on the diet 100%?
-Has your teeth improved, remain the same or gotten worst.
-What is your dental hygiene protocol, Has it changed? what are your results.
-When was the last time you saw the dentist and were the results?
4)I love this diet and all that goes with it but I agree with Fred that I find quite a few people start to have teeth issues and blame the diet for nutrition reasons and abandon the diet thinking there is some deficiency. Unfortunately when people go 811 they also tend to abandon some key hygiene practices which then makes it confusing when they start having issues could it be nutrition or poor hygiene??
Nutrition? I don't think that would be the main reason people would have difficulties with their teeth. I have heard a lot of people say they have come from other diets and have very little issues with their teeth (that were a lot more deficient in nutrients, me included) but with 811 they started having issues. The teeth and bone are the same yes but we are exposing the teeth to a much different environment then the bones.
I want it so people have the most chance of success possible I find that we need to give advice that works for most people not just some. Then when a person who has teeth issues we can look on the nutrient side but I have a feeling it would a lot less.
So far most of the people I have heard have teeth issues started the diet and ditched what they were doing usually just brush with water. I would like to know if there are people who can say they too great care of their teeth and still have issues?. There will always be outliers due to genetics, previous histories etc, but would like to hear what people have to say so we can get a better idea.
Here is some of an email by Fred on the subject, I am no expert but I agree with what he has to say from my experiences and what I have read and talked to a very good holistic dentist. I know that Fred makes money from his internet site but he also is giving relevant info that people should listen too
I have over 10 years of experience in the raw food movement.
I've written several books on the subject, I've had one of
the very first raw food websites on the Internet, and I've
been in touch with tens of thousands of people following
this diet over the years.
I've met most of the raw-food leaders personally, and I've
even worked with many of them. I've even personally coached
hundreds of people to succeed with a raw food lifestyle.
And after all of these years, I've come to the conclusion
that raw-foodists have the worst dental health of any other
"health group" in the world.
What I have observed is:
* I high incidence of dental decay among raw-foodists, after
they switch to the diet
* A high incidence of gum recession and enamel erosion among
* Sudden, drastic & dramatic dental problems that occur
typically 1 to 3 years after a person has switched to the
raw food diet, and tend to persist overtime.
I have gone through a series of dental problems myself as a
direct result of following the raw-food diet incorrectly
(and I'm not even talking about eating a lot of dates
here), and I have met at least several hundred people who
have gone through similar issues.
I know several leaders of the raw-food movement who have
experience an increasing number of dental problems on the
raw food diet, and still won't come clean about it and
explain to their followers why this happens.
The "weak link" of the raw diet
There's a lot of positive aspects to the raw food diet. But
the issue of dental health is the real weak link. A person
can experience lots of wonderful beneficial effects on the
raw food diet, but notice their dental health go downhill.
In my experience, it's also the number one reason why
people quit on the diet after being successful with it for
It doesn't happen to every raw-foodist. It probably happens
to the large majority however, and there is a direct
correlation between the switch to the raw diet and the
development of dental problems.
The Two Culprits
At this point, if you have the least interest in eating raw
foods, you should start reading very, very closely.
Dental decay is not caused by eating the wrong diet. That's
right. Dental decay is actually a *transmittable disease*.
Dental decay is the result of the proliferation of certain
types of bacteria in the oral environment. The bacteria
eliminate acid waste that eat into your teeth and cause
There are only TWO reasons why raw-foodists experience more
problems when they moved to the diet. But before we look at
them, let's take a look at what is NOT the cause of these
problems. So raw-foodists DON'T have problems with their
- They don't eat enough greens
- They don't get the proper ratio of calcium/phosphorus
- They are not consuming "super nutrition"
- They are not consuming enough calories
- They eat too many acid forming foods like nuts and seeds
All of the reasons above are NOT why raw-foodists get
problems with their teeth. The only two reasons why
raw-foodists get problems with their teeth are:
- Underlying issues (the bacteria count)
Once you understand this simple concept, you'll be able to
eradicate decay for life.
What happens is that when people move into the raw-food
diet, they are basically a time-bomb as far as their dental
health is concerned. Their bacteria count is a little too
high, but not high enough to cause major problems.
Suddenly, they dump a bunch of sugar into their mouths. This
sugar creates a giant feast for the bacteria who feed on
So in that sense, the introduction of a higher quantity of
natural sugar is the determining factor. This sugar can be
in various forms... it doesn't matter for the bacteria who
feed on them! There is no difference between white sugar and
banana sugar when it comes to increasing the bacteria count
in the mouth!
And this sugar is plentiful in the raw food diet. We're
- Fresh fruits (bananas, mangoes, etc.)
- Fruit juices
- Dried fruits
- Nuts and seeds (which stick to the teeth)
- Raw food "bars" and dehydrated treats
- Smoothies (that's right)
- Green smoothies (that's right)
- Coconut water
Now... here's where it gets interesting. Sugar is food for
Normally, you want your bacteria count to be as low as
possible. You want to avoid bacteria forming in to
*colonies* and creating their own little civilization in
If your oral environment is really clean... it doesn't
really matter if you eat dates all day. If the bacteria
count is low, you can do that without problems.
So although the *precipitating* factor that creates problem
for raw-foodists is the introduction of more sugar, the
*real* problem are the underlying issues, so the bacteria
The only way to prevent dental decay for life and reverse a
bad situation is to take active control of your oral
environment. Just controlling your diet does not address the
root of the problem.
I wanted to add he mentions the time bomb on the diet but he forgets to mention that many stop using something to kill bacteria on 811 which I think amplifies the issue, matter of fact i think if most people kept their previous hygiene practices most likely not be having this discussion. Though as Fred mentions we might want to reinforce are hygiene due to the higher sugar content and also if you eat a lot of acidic fruits to rinse with water.
So give your input and log what you do and your success with it? hopefully we will hear the last of these type of discussions at at least a lot less :)
Oh and just out of curiosity does anyone know the reason why most of have sensitive teeth at the beginning of the diet and then it goes away?
P.S I know there is plenty of diets that wreak havoc on the teeth and many people have bad teeth because of it (example), please don't mention this it is obvious. My focus is 80 10 10 to make sure we give recommendations that will make sure that we can smile when we say how well the diet is working :)
Listen to Dr.Nara who believes that is you keep the teeth clean you will not get decay. He has 50 years experience and claims if you follow his recommendations you will not have gum or teeth issues
I will add mine soon. Just got grab something to eat first. DURIAN!!!!
3 weeks into this diet I'm having a sensitivity on a tooth, I eat maybe 20 dates everyother day, they hurt that tooth. Other fruit not so much.
I have been brushing with water a few times a day and I use toothpaste once in a while, been doing this the last few months, longer than I have been on 80/10/10. For my whole life before that I almost always used toothpaste.
A few months ago I was using baking soda once a day and water the rest of the day, then feared it cause of it's abrasiveness and bought an all natural toothpaste.
Hey David thanks for posting. tooth sensitivity at the beginning of the diet is very common especially with dates. As you see above I actually was asking if anybody knows why. Though not to worry it goes away.
I have heard about the baking soda too and would take caution with using it as a toothpaste and probably use it as a rinse since it kills bacteria and restores ph to the mouth (I think I will add that to :).
Take a look at Frederic's recommendations and add some
Like rinsing after fruit meals and possibly brushing after certain fruits he mentions.
I would definitely add something to kill bacteria whether it is just plain soap (don't just brush with water have heard to many problems just doing this). Check if your toothpaste contains glycerine most do. I have read the 2 sides one says that it takes 27 rinses to get off and your teeth can not remineralize and the other side that it helps by forming a protective barrier. I am going without
I know Frederic uses tooth soap and heard good things about it. You can find it on his website
I will be using some products soon let you know how it goes.
Best of luck on the diet
I'm just into the 2nd week of being 80/10/10 (ok, more like 9/5/5 so far ^^) and I always at least rinse my mouth with water after every meal. At first I was brushing my teeth using only water but switched to baking soda a few days ago. I also use floss in the evening.
I guess I'll take your advice and better rinse with diluted baking soda since I also was a bit concerned whether or not baking soda isn't too harsh on my teeth.
Thanks a lot for opening this discussion! I was a bit worried seeing quite a few lfrvegans with not so good teath. But now I really guess that this was due to a lack of proper oral hygiene (amongst other reasons of course).
Lexi I think it is mostly due to lack of a good hygiene program. So far the people who have had teeth issues that I know of some did not floss, most if they brushed, brushed with just water (which will not control the bacteria) and did not use any rinses. Some have the genetics to possibly get away with a simple program like this but I don't think is what should be preached to the masses. There can be other reasons but I don't think they are the main ones though that is my opinion maybe the picture will become even clearer as people respond.
I think this is a tough diet on the teeth due to the higher sugar/bacteria and acidic fruits (although good for not getting plaque :) we eat but I think a good program should control this and reverse most issues. For sure other diets are tough on teeth as well as we know but the goal here is to show that with a good program teeth issues are not an issue
I'm confused by Frederic Patenaude's website as it seems to be directed at the run-of-the-mill raw foodist, not 811. He advocates green juices and eating cabbage for the health of your teeth not to mention lightly steamed veggies (?). I like what he said about killing bacteria in the mouth but am confused as he doesn't seem to be 100% 811.
Fred talks to all raw foodist (for one it is in his interest to reach a larger market). He also knows that not everyone can do 811 well so he recommends eating steam veggies to people who struggle. He himself is 811. He does mention that the high fat raw is problematic on teeth but the info I posted up above is definitely geared towards 811ers, remember he does add abit of fear to help sell his products but there is truth in what he says and we should listen to his opinions.
Okay here is my story for teeth.
I had great teeth as a kid and teenager rarely a cavity and I ate the typical crappy American diet (mostly pasta, meat potatoes, steamed vegetables, fish, egg, fruits, candies here and there). Good genetics for teeth.
then in my twenties got stupid and started drinking coke like it was out of style. In 2 years did not see the dentist and then did finally and got 13 cavities and my gums bled like crazy. I had about 5 cavities up to 25 years old.
Stopped the coke and stayed on the same crappy diet and my teeth stabilized maybe one or 2 cavities till I was 37, though my gums remained in not the greatest shape. so I tried oil pulling, after the third day I saw some white build up around the gumline so I scratched it off on several teeth. DUMB move, I found out later that you should not touch the teeth after oil pulling with coconut oil since it softens the enamel. To my horror exactly where I scratched on each tooth the enamel was removed. So I stopped oil pulling (it might work but from that point on I was done).
Now Came into the diet with bleeding gums, pockets in the gums, my teeth felt loose (for a long time). When I started 811, I am sure like most was hoping to heal my teeth (which I still think is possible given the right conditions). And did get good results pretty quick my gums stopped bleeding even when I flossed, barely no plaque build up anymore, teeth felt a lot firmer in the gums. Still had the pockets in the gums and they were inflamed which was mainly due to the amalgam filling irritating the gum (once they were removed most of the inflammation left though still had some problematic areas because bacteria had now built up in those openings).
I stopped brushing with toothpaste and started with water, still flossed but added rinsing with water after every fruit meal (which I believe is a good thing). Fast forward 2 years had the amalgams removed big changes in the gum health. Fast forward 6 months and the holistic dentist said I still had areas of the gum that were colonized by bacteria and that I had to get the bacteria under control (with an expensive procedure light therapy to kill them under the gumline, still might do it just hard up on cash). Fast forward 4 months and at the gum line I have little cracks on 3 teeth that I know about and a little whole on one of the front teeth so I started looking for answers and started the recommendations
and very quickly I saw really good things within 2 weeks like the article said my pockets in the gums were gone, my teeth looked better in along while probably the soap getting some stains off. Now after about a month I noticed one of the small cracks are now appearing to recede and the parts that I damaged on the enamel seems a bit better (will give updates), at least everything appears to be stabilized.
I realize my history is not the best to determine if 811 had anything to do with my dental issues (as I mentioned it help in some regards) as I was coming in with already gum and teeth issues. Matter of fact as I mentioned I think it had more to do with not having a strong hygiene program. Though I think it is relevant since things were not getting better with my dental hygiene program and were getting worst
This blog is not about me and nor do i want to be dissected. It is about listing your experience with teeth and the diet so we can resolve issues that people are having with their teeth. though don't mind if you fire some recommendations.
-Continue to rinse with water after a meal
-Floss every night, sometimes during the day if I feel something
-Use little tooth picks by GUM which are rubber which are great to take with you and knock out pieces that floss sometimes can't.
-Brush with a soft dry brush first
-Then use Soap (which worked well), now trying a tooth powder by the dentist, mix of green clay, baking powder, tea tree, lemon peel and bay laurel. have some other products coming that will try one is meant to help heal the teeth
-Try to keep hydrated and the saliva flowing :)
-Will be looking at Frederic's material more in depth
-On the nutrition side not doing much different but will look at incorporating more wild greens and supplementing with iodine. Though will hold off a little just to see how it goes with a better hygiene program. Have talked to several people by just doing a better regimen made the difference and no adjustment in diet was needed.
-Might bite the bullet and see the dentist if I don't see a clear reversal in the problematic areas
By The way if there is already a discussion like this can you somebody give me the link
I've only had 1 cavity, it's on a tooth that is not doing too well. The 4th molar on the upper left.
When I was 11 they found a cyst in my left sinus, they had to cut along the part between the cheek and gum and pull out this big cyst, it destroyed part of the bone supporting the teeth below, had to remove the 3rd molar. The 4th molar has been migrating, tilting towards the 2nd molar, the gum for the 4th molar has been all screwed up and is exposing the roots in some places. I notice the 4th molar seems to be decaying recently, need to make an appointment.
That sensitive tooth I mention in the other post is the 2nd molar on the upper left where the tilting molar is. I can't tell if the 4th molar there is affected by strong sugar, I know the 2nd molar there is sensitive near the gumline.
Good luck with that David,
Its hard when they do some much damage to correct something that should not existed if we did things right in the first place
Keep up good hygiene maybe look at getting freds dental info. if you use the this code you get a rebate
DENTALRH only till Thursday. I bought a copy because I wanted to learn more although I think you just need to follow the recommendations on his blog, just wanted to know more and other possible tips. I have my family to think of as well
Brushing with only water did not seem to work well for me. I developed tooth pain and receding gums after about three years of this approach. Since improving my dental hygiene, my condition has improved dramatically. Now I feel pretty confident about my oral condition. It seems as simple as avoiding overly acidic fruit in large quantities and washing fruit sugar off the teeth as soon as possible after eating. Here is my current routine:
The Ora Media website has some of the best dental information I've found. This article has some great information on why one should use some type of dentifice (toothpaste) to control bacteria. It also provides some common ingredients that can be used to make one.