Hi, I am new to the vegan diet and was wondering if anyone can tell me the best foods to look after my teeth on a vegan diet. I was vegetarian for many years, but being an animal lover I have gone vegan. It's been about 6 weeks and feel so much better about myself not eating animal products, but I have read a few horror stories on other internet forums about the vegan diet promoting tooth decay and cracked teeth. So far I am including soy milk, almond milk and chia seeds in my diet for calcium. I thought this would be the best place to come for the facts. Can anyone please help me? Thank you
I went searching for this topic because I had trouble with my teeth a couple of years ago and had to have a root canal done and I don't want to start those problems again. Since I have become vegan I rarely eat sugar. I guess you can find negatives on anything if you look hard enough on the internet, but I just wanted to get some opinions from real people who follow the vegan diet.
Through my own personal studies and research I have learned that correlation does not imply causation. In this case:
bad teeth that came about because of a vegan diet. Just because some people who have tried a vegan or other diet and have issues with their tooth/gum health, doesn't mean that their issues stem from that diet. There are numerous factors in a person's life that can affect their health and well-being: genetics, diet, exercise, social life, habits, etc., and any number of these could have contributed to their tooth issues. Not that I'm calling anyone a liar, just sometimes we come to the wrong conclusions about what caused certain issues.
I know from my own personal experiences that sometimes tooth decay and unhealthy teeth have genetic roots. I have always eaten a wide variety of foods, exercised, etc., and also regularly floss, brush, go to the dentist, etc. and yet I have a number of "mouth" issues - one of them is a genetic gum disorder, and numerous cavities, i grind my teeth at night and my wisdom teeth are lost somewhere in my cheeks! This makes me want to eat a healthier diet of more fruit and veg and source local food, and strengthens my resolve in what I am doing. My sister on the other hand, was a very picky eater (not in the good way), was stubborn about exercise and also mouth care, and she still has no cavities or gum problems! (we're both veggie/vegan now btw! :)) go figure!
Renee-- absolutely in agreement with you on your post!
Jagnik-- I think it's great that you are doing research on healthy living now that you are a vegan. Being a dental assistant, I love that you are concerned about your teeth. :) Just be careful which sites you are perusing. One of the first things the author of the "Cure Tooth Decay" book states, is that he does not promote a vegan diet. So you can already get a sense of where he is going to go with his argument.
Anyway, stay strong and stay vegan! :)
Hi Renee and Ayeletalie, thank you so much for you comments and support. It's great to hear from people who know what they are talking about. I am commited to staying vegan plus I am enjoying food a lot more knowing it's all healthy and plant based so I won't give up anytime soon!
Jagnik. I would love to get more info on this as well... I have been vegan for 5 yrs and my husband for 15... we both eat quite healthy however he has had serious dental problems including a root canal and multiple fillings with more to come. I had an all vegan pregnancy with my son who is now 2 1/2 he is very healthy and vibrant but has yet to be to a dentist... I more recently had my second baby... they are 22 months apart... While I was pregnant with her I craved eggs tremendously but never "gave in" now she is 7 months old and has no "defects" or anything but seems less vital than my son... weaker immune system and a respiratory issue we took her to a homeopath about and he asked if I ever craved eggs during pregnancy because her constitution was "calcera carbonica" that can often relate to a mineral deficiency in utero. I am now having severe problems with my teeth. I have at least 4 painful cavities and other tooth decay that is not yet painful but present. I bought "cure tooth decay" and researched WAP a lot of what they say makes sense and I have yet to find a lot of good hard vegan evidence that says otherwise. I am now breastfeeding both of them and it is taking an incredible toll on my health. My teeth are chipping, I am extremely tired, etc etc. I really don't know where to turn.. I am looking for good solid evidence of where vegans can get protein, phosphorus, k2, fat soluble vitamins A and D.... without foods like soy, beans, nuts and grains that contain high amounts of phytic acid which inhibits the absorption of these minerals. Because without those mentioned above where do I get my protein and what is left to eat besides veg? (which I love) haha. Anyway sorry if this is scattered, I am not all that together lately. Any help or support would be greatly appreciated. I am looking for scientific proof or real life experience please... I am a seasoned vegan but "it's best for the animals, enviroment, and health" arguments are starting to fade as my health fails.
my new years resolution is to transition into a vegan lifestyle by the end of the year and while I have no truly valuable advice (since I'm a baby vegan) but I have a plan/idea so that I eat a complete diet with all the components i need (which is funny because I know I don't do that as I eat now!) Anyways, I plan on getting the recommended amount of the nutrients I need, especially those that omnivores claim I will be missing if I cut out animal products, and then I am going to find multiple sources for each said nutrient and know exactly how much of which one is in each serving of broccoli (example) and make a chart! I know that sounds a little type A but I have had a hard time sticking to it mainly because I don't really know what to eat.... SO if I have a visual saying you must eat either this this or this to get your calcium, iron whatever then I will be better able to make a meal plan. And the reason I just gave you a lengthy explanation of my upcoming plan is because maybe you could do the for the minerals you are concerned about. Calcium is calcium, just make sure you are getting enough... same goes for other related nutrients :)