Dr. Weston Price (1870-1948) was an America dentist from Cleveland in the early 1900’s. At the end of his practice he embarked on a research journey around the world to find out “what was a healthy diet” and what caused tooth decay. His findings laid the groundwork for proper nutrition and cavity free teeth, which your dentist will NOT tell you about during your office visit!
“While a primary quest was to find the cause of tooth decay which was established quite readily as being controlled directly by nutrition, it rapidly became apparent that a chain of disturbances developed in these various primitive racial stocks starting even in the first generation after the adoption of the modernized diet and rapidly increased in severity with expressions quite constantly like the characteristic degenerative processes of our modern civilization of America and Europe.” Dr. Weston Price in Nutrition and Physical Degeneration
Who did he study?
Dr. Price traveled and studied the isolated and modernized Swiss, Gaelics, Eskimos, Peruvian Indians, Polynesians, Melanesians, African Tribes, Australian Aborigines, Torres Strait Islanders, New Zealand Maori, Ancient Civilizations of Peru, and the North American Indians. He observed the dietary habits of each group along with tooth health. For example, he found that the Swiss drank milk liberally (raw milk, cream and butter), about 2-4 cups milk per day or 3-6oz cheese, and they also consumed dark rye sourdough bread (fermented). The Swiss eating the traditional diet were free of tooth decay and dental deformities, and had immunity to disease (tuberculosis at the time).
The common theme was that when processed foods arrived in the food stream, the tooth decay rate increased from about 1% to around 30%. When the processed food diet was passed on to the next generation, teeth crowding and dental deformities became commonplace.
Dr. Price saw a large variation of foods among the groups he studied. According to Sally Fallon, president of the Weston Price Foundation:
- Some had a high intake of animal foods, some had a lower consumption.
- Some had more cooked foods where some had mostly raw foods.
- Some had fruits where as some had properly prepared grains.
- Some groups consumed dairy, some did not.
None of the traditional diets had:
- Food additives
- Vegetable oils or hydrogenated oils
- Canned food
- White flour
- High fructose corn syrup and refined sugar
- Low or reduced fat milks
- Protein powders
Common denominator in lowering the risk of tooth decay: a diet high in minerals and fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E and K2)
Dr. Price took thousands of food samples from the indigenous groups that he visited, and he brought them back to his lab for nutrient analysis and compared them to processed foods that were quickly entering the modern food supply. He found that the traditional foods contained 10 times more fat soluble vitamins more and 2-4 times more minerals than a refined diet.
All the groups ate from these special food groups to get fat soluble vitamins:
- Grass-fed dairy
- Organs from land animals
- Organs from sea foods
- Use of sacred foods rich in fat soluble vitamins: vitamin rich butter, shark liver oil, and salmon roe.
What can you do to prevent tooth decay?
Fill in the “holes” in your diet with MORE fat soluble vitamins and mineral rich foods. I also highly recommend reading Cure Tooth Decay: Remineralize cavities and repair your teeth with good food by Ramiel Nagel.
Get enough fat soluble vitamins:
- Vitamin D: Animal blood, beef fat, duck eggs, oily fish, and raw milk.
- Vitamin A: Liver, animal eyes, and found in smaller amounts in goat cheese, raw milk, butter and eggs.
- Vitamin K2 (activator X according to Weston Price): Aged cheeses, grass- fed butter, high vitamin butter oil.
Ramiel Nagel called cod liver oil the “liquid dentist” due to the high amounts of A and D, as well as X factor- vitamin K2 with a recommended dosage 1-3 tsp/day according to the Weston Price Foundation. (2015 Update: I no longer recommend any supplements containing vitamin D due to the side effects of such supplementation)
Get more minerals in your diet:
- Bone broth
- Fruits and easy to digest vegetables
- Grass fed butter and dairy products
- Balance intake of calcium and phosphorus
Do you struggle with tooth decay? Please share in the comments!
Photo used with permission from The Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation.
Nagel, Ramiel. Cure Tooth Decay: Remineralize cavities and repair your teeth with good food. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform: 2010.
Fallon, Sally. “Nourishing Traditional Diets – Sally Fallon – Full DVD #1.” Online video clip. Youtube. Retrieved November 10, 2013, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3ehzZ3yNyw
Price, Weston. Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. 2002.
Nagel, Ramiel. “Cure Tooth Decay – Ramiel Nagel + Sally Fallon of the Weston Price Foundation.” Online video clip. Youtube. Retrieved November 10, 2013, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNP_QOWxoDk&list=TLerFu8nWjkRPGNFxhOjjMg08hC9e-YeAm