Friday, April 12, 2013

Let Otzi the Iceman be a lesson to all

I firmly believe that 90% of dental health is related to diet.  And if the modern high sugar high grain high processed food diet and poor overall dental health doesn't make the case, then lets take a trip back in time... about 5000 years ago or so.

A story in today's health news reads Otzi the Iceman could have used a dentist, but should say "could have used a better diet".  That is a less agricultural (grains) and more hunter-gatherer diet.  Two particular points of this article clearly make the connection between a heavy agricultural based diet and disease.  Case in point:

"These extensive studies revealed that Ötzi was a middle-age, well-to-do agriculturalist who lived not far from where he died. He also suffered from heart disease and joint pain, and probably had Lyme disease."

Read a little further and we come across this gem...

"But somehow, scientists had never analyzed his teeth before. So Ruhli and his colleagues used a CT scanner to analyze the condition of Ötzi's teeth. They found that the ancient farmer had several cavities, likely caused by his carbohydrate-rich diet.

Ötzi also showed severe wear of his tooth enamel and severe gum disease. Hard minerals in milled grains abraded the surface of his teeth and gums, exposing the bone below and making the roots loose. Similar wear-and-tear is found in the teeth of Egyptian mummies who ate milled grains, Ruhli said."

And finally to sum up...

"Ötzi's dental problems show the results of switching from a strict hunter-gatherer diet to an agricultural one, Ruhli said.

"Hunter-gatherers were depending on meat and berries, whereas (Ötzi) had processed food," Ruhli said. "The processing added a bigger variety of food but also impacted the quality of the teeth."

Need I quote more!

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