Can You Really Heal Your Child’s Teeth With Food?

Growing up, my dad was very adamant about keeping my teeth healthy. When he was growing up, there wasn’t money to go to the dentist to get your teeth checked and fixed very often. If there was a cavity, it just had to wait. Eventually that tooth may need to be pulled, but that was the way it was. No one talked about healing teeth with food.

So when I was little, I brushed my teeth twice a day with kid approved toothpaste, I took my fluoride pills daily, and I had cleanings every 6 months at the dentist… even though it meant that my dad would be working extra just to pay for the dental insurance. Strong, healthy teeth were important to him, and rightly so.

Thankfully, I did have healthy teeth. I never once had a cavity after I got my permanent teeth and started doing all of these measures to keep them healthy. That is until college. What happened then, I’m not exactly sure, but I started to get a cavity here and there. Small, no big deal cavities, but it was decay none-the-less. I was still following the healthy oral care practices my dad and dentist had instilled in me, minus the fluoride pills, but it didn’t seem to matter. It seemed like every time I went for a 6 month appointment I had another small cavity. The only thing that had really changed was my diet and my stress level. Again, there was never any talk about healing teeth with food or anything else for that matter.

For me, cavities were a bummer, but I knew you couldn’t do anything about them but get them filled quickly with non-mercury fillings since they were bad… or so I’d been told. I knew that you didn’t want to let the cavity get bigger than it already was, so filling it quickly was the best bet, and that’s exactly what I did… for years… until my eyes were opened to the link between nutrition and healthy teeth.

Remineralizing Teeth?

When I had my first baby, I’d learned enough about natural health to know that fluoride was a poison and that it was not going into my baby. That meant filtered water, none of that baby water the stores sell that has fluoride added to it, and that meant no fluoride toothpaste when started using toothpaste. But that was about the extent of my knowledge when it came to holistic dental care.

It wasn’t until very recently that I started learning about healing teeth with food. I’d heard about this great book called, CureTooth Decay by Ramiel Nagel. It was all about how to prevent and health cavities and tooth decay with nutrition.

Cure Tooth Decay

It seemed so simple that I just wasn’t sure. I mean, if this was the answer, why did the experts not know about it or tell anyone about it. I’d always been taught that you had so much enamel and that if bacteria ate through it or it was chipped, that was that. There was no more.

After listening to stories of other people who have healed their children’s teeth using the principles in Cure Tooth Decay, I realized that was simply not true. Enamel can and does remineralize. Today, many dentists are starting to become aware of this very fact.

Here’s a story from Sarah Pope of The Healthy Home Economist about how she healed her child’s cavity using food, and another one from Heather Dessinger of Mommypotamus about healing her daughters teeth from decay.

Our Bodies Are Designed To Heal Themselves

When we get sick, our bodies immediately take action to overcome whatever it is that’s causing us to get sick. That’s how our bodies were designed to function. We don’t have one shot at getting everything right, thankfully.

If we make bad decisions like hanging out with someone who has the flu… we get sick. Luckily that’s not the end of us, and we can overcome it. Our bodies can do it on their own… since they were designed to do that, but most times it helps to give our bodies the extra resources it needs to do the job quicker and easier than leaving it to itself. Simple things like body building foods and immune stimulating herbs will do wonders for helping the body to get better.

It’s the same thing with teeth. Our teeth or our children’s teeth.

Teeth are bones. Bones need certain things to be healthy like nutrients and minerals. Where do we get nutrients and minerals? From FOOD.

We can’t expect to feed ourselves or our children crap and have our bodies or our children’s bodies to flourish and thrive. Foods void of health will result in a body void of health. You reap what you sow, right?

Putting The Pieces Together

When I realized this, it was like a light bulb went off in my head. How basic! How simple! It made perfect sense.

When I was young, I may have been doing things that helped my teeth stay clean, but the real key was that I was eating home-cooked meals that were nutritious to my body. It wasn’t until college that I started eating packaged, processed foods, eating out, and eating more junk. Hence, less nutrition in my body = less healthy body = less healthy teeth.

As I said, this has been a more recent discovery, and I’m not going to rehash all the goodness that the book Cure Tooth Decay has to offer, but I can tell you that it’s opened my eyes and helped me to understand the subject more. I highly suggest that you buy it and read it for yourself.

The basis of the book is that people who ate nourishing, traditional diets like those supported by the Weston A. Price foundation had no dental decay and that we would be doing ourselves a favor by implementing this in our own lives.

Now I totally get that a WAP diet isn’t the best fit for everyone, but the general rule is to eat nutrient-dense foods that are high in vitamins and minerals and to get plenty of vitamin D. Read this post on understanding the importance of vitamin d to see how this vital nutrient plays a huge role in the health of our teeth. If you don’t live in an area where you get lots of vitamin d or your lifestyle doesn’t allow you to get out in the sun often, consider taking supplements like Green Pasture’s Fermented Cod Liver Oil and High Vitamin Butter Oil, both of which help strengthen teeth and heal then from decay.

Choose Your Path

I want to leave you with this question… “What path will you take when it comes to your and your family’s dental health?

Will you follow along with what most dentists tell you — that cavities are caused by bacteria and that there’s nothing you can do about it besides use fluoride, brush your teeth more, and use antibacterial mouthwashes.

Or, will you choose to learn about how bones stay strong and how nutrition plays a vital role in preventing tooth decay? That high vitamin foods and the sun are not only beneficial to your overall health, but to your oral health as well. Healthy bodies resist sickness better than sick, run-down bodies just like healthy teeth resist decay better than weak teeth do.

Will you choose to heal your child’s teeth with food?

Find a healthy, natural coconut oil toothpaste recipe here and an herbal remineralizing tooth powder/paste recipe here.

Do you have thoughts or questions about this topic? If so, leave them in the comments below! I love hearing from you!
  1. Kristy says:

    Love this helpful article. Our homeopath and chiropractor recommend xylitol for oral health, as well. I’ve been using it in place of sugar cane crystals in recipes and love it!

    • Meagan says:

      We use xylitol in our homemade toothpaste (when I remember it), but I don’t use it in food. I just recently found out (I think I shared it on my FB page today) that xylitol is actually a sugar alcohol and considered an artificial sweetener (anything ending in -ol supposedly isn’t natural) and isn’t great for the body. Like I said, I just learned this, but it would be something to look into more just to be sure. Read this post by The Healthy Home Economist –> http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/xylitol-not-as-sweet-as-its-cracked-up-to-be/. I found it VERY informative.

  2. Nell says:

    Thank you for this post. I have a book Nourishing traditions sitting in my cupboard and am encouraged to re-read it regarding this subject.
    My daughter moved out of home last year and has noticed that her teeth are decaying at a faster rate, I will have to share this article with her.
    I new about the Weston Price studies into ancient cultures but did not know that the teeth could be helped once the damage was already done.
    It is something I will be looking into further.
    Thank you again.
    Blessings Nell

    • Meagan says:

      You’re welcome Nell, and if it’s something that interests her… definitely point her towards this book – Cure Tooth Decay. It has a lot about eating nutrient dense foods, and if she’s moved out of the house… that’s more up to her now so at least she could read it and make up her mind on it. Glad it was helpful!

  3. KateD says:

    I just down loaded the ebook and am looking forward to reading it. I want to heal my adult teeth!
    Currently taking fermented cod liver oil and starting back on a WAP Traditional Diet. Picking up my raw milk today.
    Do you have an opinion about the Fermented Skate Liver oil in comparison to the CLO?

    • Meagan says:

      I’m not sure what the difference would be as far as the vitamin/mineral content goes between the two of them Kate, but once you get in the book… I think he addresses the different oils and still prefers the fermented cod liver oil over everything else. I think you’re really going to enjoy the book! I love it!


    […] Click here to learn more about the relation between food and healthy teeth with Growing Up Herbal: https://growingupherbal.com/can-you-really-heal-your-childs-teeth-with-food/ […]

  5. Monica says:

    Hi Meagan,

    Great site, I love all the info on herbalism. Thank you!

    I’m curious, how has your dental health progressed since the diet & hygiene changes?

    I stopped using fluoride toothpaste for about 2 years, brushing with baking soda and some strong herbal drops I bought from companies Longevity Now by David Wolfe & Living Libations and experienced rapid decay when prior to then I had only had 2 cavities in my life. I’m not sure if maybe I wasn’t eating the proper diet or maybe I should have weaned off the fluoride and not shocked my body cutting it out cold turkey?

    I started using fluoride toothpaste again like Tom’s which has less chemicals than others, and I’m not entirely happy about it, but I wasn’t sure what to do about my decay.

    I bought Ramiel Nagel’s book a while ago, maybe it’s time to revisit. I feel a little helpless and overwhelmed.

    I hope your habit changes have been more successful than mine!

    Thanks again! 🙂

    • Meagan says:

      Hey Monica, thanks for your comment. I have not noticed any decay in my teeth since stopping fluoride, and I feel like my teeth are healthier now than they used to be. I too stopped cold turkey as far as the toothpaste goes, but I’m sure I still get some when we eat out or if I’m at someone else’s house having dinner.

      Besides not using fluoride toothpastes and avoiding it in our drinking water, we’ve also slowly adopted healthier eating as well. I 100% think that diet plays a huge role in this, and I’d totally revisit the Cure Tooth Decay book if I were you. If your diet is good, then your teeth are supposed to be strong enough to handle the decay causing bacteria. If you are currently seeing decay, maybe it would be a good idea to adopt more pastured meats and fats into your diet and to get started on the fermented cod liver oil and the high vitamin butter oil that he suggests in his book. That’s what I’d do if it were me. I think it can take anywhere from 6 months to 1 year to see reversal so I wouldn’t get impatient with it either. That and diet should make a huge difference.

      Hopefully this has helped answer your questions. I too have not used fluoride toothpaste on my kids and they eat what Dad and I eat, and they too have not had any tooth decay issues. I’m very grateful, and it encourages me to continue working hard at our diets first.

  6. Monica says:

    Thank you for your reply Meagan! I will definitely revisit and see what I can do differently.

    Thank you again for your great website, it’s really beautiful and helpful!

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