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dental health

  • The common honeybee is a fascinating little insect that offers us humans some valuable natural foods with health-promoting benefits. These "super foods" include bee pollen, royal jelly and propolis.

    Bee Pollen
    Bee pollen is the pollen gathered from plants by honeybees, and brought back to their hive. Bee pollen contains all of the eight essential amino acids in amounts that vary between five to seven times the levels found in equal weights of traditional high protein foods. It also contains vitamins A, D, E, K, C and bioflavonoids, as well as the complete B-complex, especially pantothenic acid (B5) and niacin. The high levels of vitamin B5 are particularly beneficial for the adrenal glands, which are adversely effected during stress. Bee pollen has been used traditionally as an anti-aging food, and an energy food. As a matter of fact, it has been used by a number of Olympic athletes to improve their performance.

    The oxidative damage caused by free radicals have been implicated in quite a number of disease processes, and is the primary factor in aging. Antioxidants are capable of providing protection, sometimes significant protection, against this oxidative damage. Interestingly, bee pollen appears to provide significant antioxidant activity, which may explain its traditional use as an anti-aging food. One animal study demonstrated that bee pollen (as well as beta-carotene oil) was able to abolish the effects of harmful ionizing radiation on the brain. This was a function of bee pollen's antioxidant properties.1 X-rays can activate lipid peroxidation (i.e., free radical activity) in the liver, and adversely affect liver glutathione (i.e., antioxidant) systems. Animal research has shown that bee pollen is able to normalize the activity of important glutathione system enzymes in the liver.2 Another study demonstrated that bee pollen was able to markedly decrease lipoperoxide levels in animals fed a limited diet, compared to animals not receiving bee pollen.3

    Free radicals can also contribute towards lipofuscin, also known as age pigments and liver spots. These are commonly seen as small brownish spots on the back of hands on elderly people. Liver spots are actually an outward sign of internal toxic accumulation of lipofuscin; including, but not limited to vital nerve centers such as the brain. Such toxic accumulation of lipofuscin can block nutrient absorption in the cells. Animal research has shown that bee pollen markedly reduces lipofuscin in the cardiac muscle (heart), significantly inhibits the increase of lipofuscin in cardiac muscle, liver, brain and adrenal gland cells.4

    Increase red blood cells & hemoglobin
    Traditionally, bee pollen has been used as a food to help increase energy levels. One possible explanation for this use is that bee pollen helps to increase red blood cells, and the hemoglobin component of red blood cells. Since it is the hemoglobin in red blood cells that carry oxygen for energy metabolism, this may explain the relationship between bee pollen and energy. For example, in one animal study, bee pollen resulted in increases in hemoglobin and serum iron.5 In a study on humans, bee pollen and several other Chinese herbs were found to increase the number of red blood cells.6

    Bee Propolis
    Propolis is a resinous substance collected from various plants by bees. It is used in the construction of, and to seal the cracks in, the beehive. For this reason, propolis is often referred to as "bee glue." It is a mixture of resin, essential oils and waxes, and also contains amino acids, minerals, ethanol, vitamin A, B complex, E, and flavonoids.7 In addition to its construction adhesive application, propolis also has antimicrobial properties, which helps to prevent microorganisms from entering the hive and causing illness.

    Antibacterial/antifungal activity
    In-vitro (i.e., "test tube") research has demonstrated that propolis has significant antibacterial activity, and also helps to reduce oxidation potential.8 Other research has also verified that the growth of bacteria (particularly Gram-positive bacteria) is inhibited by propolis.9,10,11 In addition to its antibacterial properties, propolis has also been found to have antifungal effects against Candida albicans.12 Furthermore, research has shown that propolis has specific antibacterial activity against several strains isolated from patients with infections in their upper respiratory tracts.13

    Dental research
    Some interesting dental studies have also been conducted on the value of propolis, including its antibacterial properties. In one study, propolis was found to inhibit certain enzymes and bacteria that are chief culprits in the formation of dental caries (cavities).14 Other research on propolis has also demonstrated a similar antibacterial effect, including a reduction of bacteria in saliva.15

    Another dental-related value of propolis is its desensitizing properties for teeth. In one study, propolis was administered to 26 women over a period of four weeks. The women were tested for teeth sensitivity by two methods: 1) cold air stimuli, and 2) subjective reporting of pain. Eighty-five percent of the subjects in this study reported that they were highly satisfied; the propolis had significant desensitizing effects on their sensitive teeth.16

    Anti-viral activity
    Besides its antibacterial properties, propolis has also demonstrated significant antiviral properties, particularly where cold viruses are concerned. For example, in one study, preschool and school children were treated with propolis during the cold season. Favorable effects of propolis treatment were observed, including a lowering of the number of cases of common cold with acute or chronic symptoms, and decrease and suppression of the viruses and other microbes in the upper airways.17 Other research demonstrated that propolis was effective in shortening the duration of a cold. Specifically, regression of symptoms occurred in the first day of propolis therapy, and the complete recovery followed in one day in five patients, in two days in16, and in three days in three. The placebo group had full recovery in 4.80 days. In the propolis-treated group the symptoms lasted 2.5 times shorter than in placebo one.18

    Propolis also has promising antiviral properties against herpes viruses.19 In-vitro research has shown that propolis has activity against herpes simplex virus type 1, reducing viral activity and replication.20 Other in-vitro research has also shown that the flavonoids found in propolis caused a reduction of intracellular replication of herpes virus strains.21

    Finally, in one in-vitro study propolis was found to suppress the replication of HIV 1 virus, as well as modulate immune responses.22

    Two to four tablets of propolis daily are typically used.

    Royal Jelly

    Royal jelly is a substance produced by worker honeybees. If fed to an ordinary female bee in the larval stage, royal jelly will transform her into the queen bee. As a queen, she will grow 1½ times normal size, become extremely fertile and lay over a thousand eggs each day. Incredibly, she may live over five years while all the other bees live only a few weeks. The only difference is that she receives royal jelly while the others don't.

    The chemistry of royal jelly
    Royal jelly is a complex mixture of proteins (12%), sugar (12%), fats (6%) and variable amounts of minerals vitamins and pheromones. About 15 percent of royal jelly is 10-hydroxy-trans-(2)-decanoic acid (HDA), which is probably the substance that causes the queen bee to grow so large. Royal jelly is particularly rich in B vitamins, with pantothenic acid dominating.

    Royal jelly folk use
    Royal jelly has a history of folk use as a skin tonic and hair growth stimulant. The skin benefits are supposed to include a nourishing process that reduces wrinkles, although there is no actual scientific research that supports these claims (or the hair growth claims). Royal jelly has also been considered to be a general tonic that has a general systemic action rather than any specific biological function, which benefits menopause and sexual performance. Perhaps it's most significant use has been as an aid for increasing energy.

    Royal jelly research
    Scientific research on royal jelly has revealed that it possesses antitumor activity in experimental mouse leukemia's.23 Additional research has demonstrated that royal jelly has antibacterial activity against Gram positive bacteria, but not against Gram negative bacteria.24 Furthermore, research with chronically diabetic rats demonstrated that royal jelly possesses an anti-inflammatory action and is able to augment wound healing.25 Royal jelly has also been shown to prevent the cholesterol elevating effect of nicotine26 , and has lowered serum cholesterol in animal studies.27 Some research has also demonstrated that royal jelly can lower cholesterol levels in humans.28,29 Cholesterol lowering research has shown that the typical dose used for this purpose is 50 100 mg daily.30


    1. Anan'eva TV, Dvoretskii AI, Radiatsionnaia biologiia, radioecologiia (1999) 39(2 3):341 4
    2. Bevzo VV, Grygor'eva NP, Ukrainskii biokhimicheskii zhurnal (1997) 69(4):115 7.
    3. Qian B; Zang X; Liu X, Chung kuo chung yao tsa chih (1990) 15(5):301 3, 319.
    4. Liu X, Li L, Chung kuo chung yao tsa chih (1990) 15(9):561 3, 578.
    5. Xie Y, Wan B, Li W, Hua hsi i k'o ta hsueh hsueh pao (1994) 25(4):434 7.
    6. Iversen T, et al, Journal of ethnopharmacology (1997) 56(2):109 16.
    7. Mahmoud AS, Almas K, Dahlan AA, Indian journal of dental research (1999) 10(4):130 7.
    8. Drago L, et al, Journal of chemotherapy(2000) 12(5):390 5.
    9. Kobayashi N, et al, In vivo (2001) 15(1):17 23.
    10. Marcucci MC, et al, Journal of ethnopharmacology (2001) 74(2):105 12.
    11. Grange JM, Davey RW, Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine (1990) 83(3):159 60.
    12. Koo H, et al, Archives of oral biology (2000) 45(2):141 8.
    13. Focht J, et al, Arzneimittel Forschung (1993) 43(8):921 3.
    14. Park YK, et al, Current microbiology (1998) 36(1):24 8.
    15. Steinberg D, Kaine G, Gedalia I, American journal of dentistry (1996) 9(6):236 9.
    16. Mahmoud AS, Almas K, Dahlan AA, Indian journal of dental research (1999) 10(4):130 7.
    17. Crisan I, et al, Romanian journal of virology (1995) 46(3 4):115 33.
    18. Szmeja Z, et al, The Polish otolaryngology (1989) 43(3):180 4.
    19. Esanu V, Virologie (1981) 32(1):57 77.
    20. Amoros M, et al, Journal of natural products (1994) 57(5):644 7.
    21. Debiaggi M, et al, Microbiologica (1990) 13(3):207 13.
    22. Harish Z, et al, Drugs under experimental and clinical research (1997) 23(2):89 96
    23. Tamura T, Fujii A, Kuboyama N, Nippon Yakurigaku Zasshi (1987) 89(2):73 80.
    24. Fujiwara S, et al, J Biol Chem (1990) 265(19):11333 7.
    25. Fujii A, et al, Jpn J Pharmacol (1990) 53(3):331 7.
    26. Abou Hozaifa BM, Badr El Din NK, Saudi Med J(1995) 16:337-42.
    27. Abou Hozaifa BM, Roston AAH, El Nokaly FA, J Biomed Sci Ther (1993) 9:35B44.
    28. Cho YT, Am Bee J (1977) 117:36-39.
    29. Liusov VA, Zimin IU, Kardiologia (1983) 23:105-9 [in Russian].
    30. Vittek J, Experientia (1995) 51:927-35.
  • Join John in Costa Rica where he investigates Dental Tourism. Many people do not have dental insurance and yet need dental work or surgery they cannot afford. Costa Rica offers cost savings of 60 to 70% and more over costs of dental work in the US. John traveled to Costa Rica earlier this year to interview patients and dentists. On today's show he talks with patients and visits clinics to ensure they can provide the best practices and care for international patients. In this installment he meets Ogg from Brooklyn, gets Ogg's story and visits the clinic that did the work. Ogg saved about $66,000 by having his dental work done in Costa Rica. Top dentists in Costa Rica have the same or better education than many of dentists in the US. Like with everything it seems it is buyer beware. Always do your own homework, seek out qualified referrals, and don't be afraid to ask the tough questions. Keep in mind you do not have the same access to compensation in the event anything goes wrong like you do in the US.

    Websites and contacts for today's program:

    Dental Clinic:
    Dental Cosmetics:
    US Tel: (305) 428-3820

    AIRBNB/Restaurant San Jose:
    Cocina Eclectica: (Trip Advisor Link)
    Owner: Joanna Stein This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
    CR Tel: 8529-2509

    PlanetSafe Lubricants:

  • Pregnancy is a time of great joy! There’s a lot to think about and get ready to welcome the new member of your family. Unfortunately, you may be so busy and excited that it’s easy to forget about the health of your mouth. A healthy smile is important, and especially during pregnancy. During pregnancy, hormonal changes affect your mouth. Bleeding gums and tenderness along with gum swelling are not unusual during this time. However, the principles on how to prevent oral disease stay the same, whether you are pregnant or not. Many changes take place during pregnancy, and the health of the mouth is no exception with some adverse affects. There are many myths that exist during pregnancy as far as dental care is concerned. Concerns include taking x-rays, or even what to do with a toothache. This article will help separate fact from myth.

    Your Baby’s Health

    Studies report poor oral health increases the risk of problem pregnancy including miscarriage. However, since 80 percent of spontaneous miscarriages occur during the first trimester, it is advisable to avoid any non-urgent treatment until the second or third trimester. By the second trimester, the major layers of the internal organs of the baby have developed, thereby reducing the risk of exposure to any harmful or necessary medications.

    During the second trimester, it’s also easier for mother to recline in the dental treatment chair for extended periods of time. However, it may be helpful to get short breaks if you do have to be in the dental chair for quite awhile.

    X-rays and Pregnancy
    With modern digital radiology, exposure to radiation is extremely low. You and your unborn child are generally at a higher risk from gum disease or tooth infection, than you are with radiation exposure. Other ways you are exposed to radiation include the sun, microwaves and your cell phones. If you do need x-rays for needed dental problem, your dentist will protect you by covering your throat and abdomen with a leaded apron. The collar of the apron will protect the thyroid during radiation.

    Medications During Pregnancy
    Your dentist may need to prescribe medications or over-the-counter drugs during dental treatment. Make sure to inform your dentist of any medications you are taking. Your dentist may consult with your physician to determine the best medication, if any may be needed, such as antibiotics or for pain management.

    Gum Disease and Problem Pregnancy
    Evidence from recent studies shows a connection between gum disease and low birth weight babies and premature delivery. In order to avoid transmission of oral bacteria from mother to children and to prevent problem pregnancies, it’s important to see a dentist before and during pregnancy.

    Often during pregnancy, due to hormonal changes, the gums become easily inflamed and appear to be swollen. This overgrowth of tissue is called “pregnancy tumor.” It usually shows up during the second trimester, if at all. The swelling is nothing to worry about as far as being cancerous. It is usually found between the teeth and caused by poor oral hygiene, which means excess plaque. You’ll notice the swelling bleeds easily and has a red appearance due to inflammation. The cleaner you keep the teeth and gums, the less likely that this condition will occur or get worse. Self-help with daily oral hygiene and three month visits to your dentist can help prevent “pregnancy gingivitis.”

    Healthy Mom = Healthy Baby When you’re pregnant, you have the responsibility for your health and your baby’s health. Healthy habits will help you have an easier pregnancy and a healthier baby. What you eat and your oral hygiene are habits that you need to practice daily by making smart choices. Now that we know an unhealthy mouth can affect the health of your unborn, it’s important to take a few steps to help prevent problem pregnancy:
    • Practice proper oral hygiene on a daily basis.
    • Get a dental check up before you become pregnant, or as soon as you find out.

    How to Brush:

    1. Use alcohol-free mouthwash and swish it around your mouth before your brush.
    2. Floss properly, and if you’re not sure how, check with your dental hygienist.
    3. Rinse your toothbrush and dab a small amount of toothpaste on it.
    4. Brush every side of every tooth in a circular motion.
    5. Brush your gums gently.
    6. Rinse.
    7. Keep your toothbrush in dry place.
    8. Change your toothbrush after a cold, or if it looks worn.

    The National Maternal and Child Oral Health Policy Center has a list of tips to follow during pregnancy for healthy nutrition:

    • Eat a variety of healthy foods, such as fruits; vegetables; whole-grain products such as cereals, breads or crackers; and dairy products like milk, cheese, cottage cheese or unsweetened yogurt.
    • Eat fewer foods high in sugar, including candy, cookies, cake, and dried fruit; and drink fewer beverages high in sugar, including juice, fruit-flavored drinks, or soft drinks.
    • For snacks, choose foods low in sugar such as fruits, vegetables, cheese and unsweetened yogurt.
    • Read food labels so you can choose foods lower in sugar.
    • If you have trouble with nausea, try eating small amounts of healthy foods throughout the day.
    • Drink water or milk instead of juice, fruit-flavored drinks or soft drinks.
    • Drink water throughout the day, especially between meals and snacks.
    To reduce the risk of birth defects, get 600 micrograms of folic acid each day throughout your pregnancy. Take a dietary supplement of folic acid and eat foods high in folate and foods fortified with folic acids, including:
    • Asparagus, broccoli and leafy green vegetables such as lettuce and spinach
    • Legumes (beans, peas, lentils)
    • Papaya, tomato juice, oranges or orange juice, strawberries, cantaloupe and bananas
    • Grain products fortified with folic acid (breads, cereals, cornmeal, flour, pasta, white rice.)

    See Your Dentist
    If you’re expecting to get pregnant, see your dentist to determine the health of your teeth and gums. Based on your dentist’s recommendation, continue to see your dentist for check ups, cleanings or treatment during your pregnancy. The first trimester is best only for urgent treatment.

  • I was POISONED by my TEETH —
    Connecting Oral Health and Overall Health
    Author: Gloria Gilbère, CDP, PhD, CWR
    ISBN: 978-0-9860477-3-2
    Available at:
    Published by: IWR Press, Sandpoint, ID
    Full Color 8 ½ x 11: Paperback & eBook

    This book is much more than the odyssey of a doctor whose dental work became the saboteur to her health – it’s about Health thru Education©

  • Dental health is something that is often neglected in favor of more pressing health concerns like weight loss and fat loss. Dental health, however, is just as important as overall physical health. Believe it or not, poor dental health has just as much effect on a person as their overall physical health.

    Importance of diet in dental health
    Diet plays a very important role in dental health. A healthy, balanced diet should contain the essential vitamins and minerals that keep the teeth and gums in optimum condition for a long time.

    A diet rich in vegetables, lean protein, healthy fats, and lowglycemic carbohydrates (e.g., fibrous vegetables and fruit) and low in simple sugars (e.g., bread, cakes and candies) go a long way in preventing tooth decay.

    Link between dental health and disease
    Researchers have discovered a correlation between gum (periodontal) disease and cardiovascular disease. While a concrete scientific relationship has yet to be established, the researchers reported two interesting findings.

    First, the type of bacteria present in gum disease is also present in the blood vessels undergoing atherosclerosis (the prelude to heart disease). Second, inflammation of the gums increases the levels of a body protein called CRP (C-reactive protein). CRP is also one of the indicators used by doctors to evaluate a person’s risk of having heart disease, and interestingly enough, CRP levels are also higher in those suffering from obesity (another well-known risk factor for heart disease).

    Cancer is another health condition that has correlation with oral health. A study by Harvard researchers showed a link between periodontal disease and pancreatic cancer. While the study has not yet been verified by laboratory experiments, it is the initial speculation of the researchers that gum inflammation is a significant factor, as it also causes inflammation in other parts of the body.

    Nutrients for optimum tooth and gum health

    Just like the rest of the body, the gums and the teeth also require specific nutrients to keep them in optimum shape and prevent infection, inflammation, and damage. The following nutrients are essential for dental health:

    1. Calcium
    Calcium is a trace element that is the main component of the physical structure of teeth and bones. Normal calcium levels help keep the tooth enamel healthy and resistant to erosion caused by bacteria. Calcium deficiency leads to tooth decay brought about by the weakening of tooth enamel.

    The US National Institutes of Health recommends the following daily intake for calcium: 1200 milligrams for men and women over the age of seventy, 1000 milligrams for men and women aged nineteen to seventy, 1300 milligrams for children who are between the ages of nine and eighteen, 1000 milligrams for children between four and eight years old, and 700 milligrams for children between one and three years old.

    Calcium is readily available in dairy products (e.g., milk and yogurt), turnip and collard greens, and kale. It can also be found in its most bioavailable form within humic acid (i.e. Leaf- Source).

    2. Zinc
    Zinc is another important trace element that is also involved in many body processes. While not as abundant as calcium, it plays an important role in maintaining dental health by preventing gum infection and plaque build-up. Deficiency in zinc can lead to mouth sores and gingivitis.

    Aside from preventing infections, zinc has also been proven to significantly reduce bad breath. Researchers have conducted studies on the effect of zinc-fortified mouthwashes and chewing gum on bad breath. They discovered that the zinc in the oral products reduced the real cause of bad breath—sulphurcontaining compounds.

    The recommended daily intake for zinc is eight milligrams for adult females and eleven milligrams for adult males. Zinc can be easily incorporated into one’s diet, as its sources are readily available to everyone. Oysters are said to contain the highest amount of readily available zinc, followed by liver and beef. Other sources include wild rice, cheese, and humic acid (i.e. LeafSource).

    3. Iron
    This trace mineral functions mainly as a carrier of oxygen throughout the body via the bloodstream. Lack of iron in the diet causes anemia, which in turn reduces oxygen flow in the various body cells and tissues. Lack of oxygen flow has been linked to infections and sores. In the mouth, this is manifested by bleeding gums and painful canker sores that often take a long time to heal.

    Just like zinc, dietary sources of iron are plentiful and inexpensive. Good sources are liver and other meat products. Iron-fortified foods like breakfast cereals can also help a person meet the recommended daily iron intake of eight milligrams (for adult males) and 18 milligrams (for adult females), however in my opinion, most are way too high in sugar, which negates any of their fortification.

    4. Magnesium
    Together with calcium, magnesium helps strengthen the tooth enamel and prevents the formation of cavities and the onset of tooth decay. The recommended daily requirement for magnesium is 400 milligrams.

    One of the best supplemental sources of magnesium is magnesium bisglycinate (magnesium bound to the amino acid glycine). The bisglycinate form is believed to be many times more absorbable than the citrate form. Dietary magnesium can be found in a wide variety of sources—fish, dark green leafy vegetables, dark chocolate, and bananas.



    1. Slade GD, et al. Relationship between periodontal disease and Creactive protein among adults in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities study. Arch Intern Med. 2003 May 26;163(10):1172–9.
    2. Michaud DS, et al. A prospective study of periodontal disease and pancreatic cancer in US male health professionals. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2007 Jan 17;99(2):171–5.
    3. Periodontal Disease and Systemic Health. American Academy of Periodontology. (Accessed May 21, 2015).
    4. NIH Medline Plus.
    5. Fedorowicz Z, et al. “Mouthrinses for the treatment of halitosis.” Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) (4): CD006701. Oct 8, 2008.

    Brad King, MS, MFS is a highly sought after authority on nutrition, obesity, longevity and one’s health and he has been touted as one of the most influential health mentors of our time. Brad can be heard live every week on Wednesday at noon Pacific/3 P.M. Eastern as he hosts the talk radio program “Transforming Health with Brad King” on Blog Talk Radio. and

  • Nothing defines a smile as the color of your teeth. If you have yellow teeth with tooth decay or old worn out fillings, you will not dazzle anyone. But a bright, beautiful healthy smile with clean white teeth, says a lot about you. To show off those beautiful white teeth, many opt for teeth whitening or bleaching, which is the easiest way for a brighter smile.

    Besides what your dentist offers, over-the-counter teeth whitening types include gels, rinses, strips, trays and whitening toothpaste products. If your teeth aren’t sensitive, you don’t have any teeth that need to be restored and you have healthy gums, then you are the ideal candidate for teeth whitening.

  • If I had a dollar for every not-so-pleasant discussion I’ve had over fluoride with various dentists over the years, well I’d be a lot better off than I am now. It’s not that I find talking about fluoride unpleasant, despite the fact that there isn’t much good I can say about the stuff, it’s more about the “Oh great another health nut” expression on the dentist’s face every time I refuse to have it anywhere near my mouth. We are led to believe fluoride is healthy for us, so much so that the very establishments that were put in place to protect us, introduce the stuff into the public water system in order to prevent dental decay. How noble of them if it were actually true.

  • Dr. Weston Price practiced dentistry over seventy years ago in Cleveland, Ohio. His techniques and knowledge of a whole approach to health were years ahead of his time not only as far as dentistry, but regarding medicine in general. Consequently, he became a popular and influential dentist as well as Chairman of the American Dental Association's Research Department. He is also known as the father of nutrition.

    Curious as to the exact cause of cavities and malformed dental arches that resulted in crooked, overcrowded teeth, Dr. Price began investigating a potential connection to diet and nutrition. Microscopes and laboratories were devoid of the answers he searched for. Dr Price felt that the most logical way to research was to observe different cultures. It was necessary to compare those societies that ate modern diets consisting mostly of processed and refined foods such as white flour products, sugar, white rice, canned foods, and fats with those that regularly consumed a more nutritious diet, and where most of the food was grown locally.

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