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Can my Keto Diet affect my dental health?

The Keto Diet has gained popularity in the last several years. The Keto Diet is a low carbohydrate, high-protein eating plan like the Paleo, South Beach, and Atkins diets. The goal of the Keto Diet is to put your body into a state of ketosis by eating low carbs, high protein and high fat diet so that your body will burn fat.  Many people have had success with and are touting the wonders of the Keto Diet.  If you are considering this new diet, your dentist on Commercial Blvd in Fort Lauderdale wants you to know how a keto diet affects dental health.

What are the Pros to the Keto Diet? 

Less Plaque.  One benefit of the Keto Diet is less plaque.  The bacteria that form plaque in your mouth feed on sugar.  With a reduction in carbohydrates, there is a reduction of these bacteria.  You probably know that plaque builds up on teeth and, if not removed, hardens into tartar. Both plaque and tartar damage the enamel on your teeth and lead to dental decay.  Plaque and tartar also cause irritation of your gums which can lead to gingivitis and periodontial disease and tooth loss.  Even with the reduction of sugar in your diet, your dentist in Fort Lauderdale reminds that  you still need to brush and floss regularly to keep your mouth healthy.

Fewer Cavities. With less plaque and tartar build up, you are less likely to develop cavities.  The bacteria in your mouth feed on sugars and carbohydrates creating acids as a by-product.  When this acid sticks to the tooth in the bacteria-containing dental plaque, it softens and weakens enamel.  This is how bacteria get inside your tooth in the cavity process.

What are the Cons to the Keto Diet? 

Dry Mouth. A side effect of the Keto Diet is a more acidic internal pH. A reduced carbohydrate diet causes your saliva to become slightly acidic which can lead to dry mouth. Saliva naturally washes away food debris and bacteria,  plays a role in remineralization of your teeth, and protects the tissues in your mouth from harm. Both the acidity and dryness caused by a keto diet will cause oral issues in the long term. 


Keto Breath.  One side effect of the Keto Diet and ketosis is something called “keto breath.”  A ketogenic diet leads to high amounts of ketones in the body.  Ketones are chemicals made in your liver during the conversion of stored fat into energy.  Your body excretes ketones in two ways: exhalation and urination. Ketone molecules have a very distinct smell.  Some people describe keto breath as having a sickly sweet smell while others perceive the smell to be more similar to acetone (nail polish remover).

If you suffer from dry mouth, your dentist in Fort Lauderdale recommends:

Your dentist at Excellence in Dentistry emphasizes daily brushing and flossing to keep your teeth and gums healthy.  If the Keto Diet is part of your health routine for 2022, managing your ketosis level is also important to maintain good oral health. Minimizing sugars and carbohydrates benefits your smile as well as your waistline. As another part of your health routine, schedule your regular biannual dental exam and cleaning by calling our office at 954-928-1666.  We are conveniently located on the southside of Commercial Boulevard between the bridge from Lauderdale by the Sea and Federal Highway.


Nancy Rotroff, DDS, MAGD  & Gerard Wasselle, DMD

Excellence in Dentistry

2480 E. Commercial Blvd, Suite 2

Fort Lauderdale, FL  33308

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