September 5, 2020
From podcast: https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/podcast/lifestyle-podcasts/holistic-dental-care/
[00:01:38] Podcast Sponsors
[00:03:04] Podcast and Guest Introduction
[00:06:52] Personal History In The Realm Of Beauty And Symmetry
[00:14:21] How Your Teeth Derive Nutrients From Your Gut Via A “Dentinal Flow”
[00:24:01] Eight Steps For Dental Care
[00:30:09] Podcast Sponsors
[00:32:32] (cont.) Eight Steps For Dental Care
[00:47:46] The Effects Your Teeth Have On Other Organs In Your Body
[00:52:10] Thoughts On The Efficacy Of Charcoal Toothpaste
[00:56:50] Peptides That Can Be Used For Oral Care
[01:01:37] Three Questions You Need To Ask The Next Time You Visit Your Dentist
[01:05:21] Rapid-Fire Questions
[01:08:24] The Stop, Seal, Seed Concept
[01:15:55] Closing the Podcast
[01:17:55] End of Podcast
Ben: On this episode of the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast.
Nadine: Any dentist that really is leading-edge, and biological, and knows their stuff has basically had to undo what they've learned, which is the same with like functional medicine. For me in body care and my relationship to my body, it's like where is actually, like where should I be getting out of the way and letting the body do what it's supposed to do? If you just ditched anything commercial and used baking soda and sea salt for the rest of your life, your whole mouth would be so much better off than using Crest.
Ben: Health, performance, nutrition, longevity, ancestral living, biohacking, and much more. My name is Ben Greenfield. Welcome to the show.
Today's show is with Nadine Artemis, who has been sending me beauty products to try, and my wife has been stealing them all. So, if my wife has looked extra beautiful of late on social media, not that she's not banging hot anyways, and yes, you can tell her I said that on a podcast, she's looking even better because she's using these Living Libations products, smearing them all over her face, and her arms, and legs, and wherever women smear personal care products. Anyways though, Nadine Artemis is really cool. She designs these really cool beauty products. She has this wonderful company called Living Libations. I want to get her on the show to talk mostly about teeth because she has a really interesting perspective on oral health. But both her books are really good. You're about to learn about them.
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Well, folks, you know me. I'm super into beauty, and self-love, and self-care. If any of you follow me on Instagram, you see me rolling around with my clay masks, and my coffee enemas, and seaweed wraps all over my face, doing all these things that modern males I guess are supposed to do to be naturally radiant. And I actually get a lot of questions about beauty. In my recent book, I had a whole chapter on beauty, and symmetry, and self-care when it comes to your teeth, and your skin, and your hair, and beyond. And although this was something I've always been interested in, it's certainly something I have become more interested in, not only as I age, but as I just realize how important overall face, and skin, and hair, and oral care, and even genital care, and things like this are to overall health and longevity, how integral they're all tied together.
Anyways, I recently read two really good books on these type of topics. One was a book on “Holistic Dental Care” that I thought was going to be just like the same old same old natural dental care type of book, but it wound up just blowing my mind as far as tons of practical tips on healthy teeth and gums from a very unique perspective. And then, the other book, which was equally good was called “Renegade Beauty.” My wife stole it from me and I had to get it back, eventually, when she was done with it. But “Renegade Beauty” was also really, really good. It's like this full color, fun to read guide that shows you not only how to care for your skin, but this whole process of the skin biome, the microbiome, the bacterial profile within the mouth, the interplay between all these different systems in our body that contribute to beauty, probably one of the best books on beauty that I have ever read.
So, the author of both of these books was the same person, Nadine Artemis, who, no surprises, is my guest on today's show. So, everything that we talk about you're going to be able to find at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/nadine. And Nadine is spelled N-A-D-I-N-E. I will also link to both these books, the “Holistic Dental Care” book, and then also the “Renegade Beauty” book. So, who is Nadine? Well, she is the creator of Living Libations, which is this luxury line of wildcrafted non-GMO serums, and elixirs, and essential oils, and beauty products. She's also an aromacologist. So, she develops different formulas and medicinal blends in the realm of aromatherapy. She produces dental serums that are used all around the world, really, really good oral care products. And she's actually been featured all over the place, in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, National Post, Goop, Vogue, People, you name it. She's worked with a lot of celebrities for their beauty like Renee Zellweger, and Julianne Moore, Carrie-Anne Moss, Mandy Moore. Alanis Morissette describes her as a true sense-visionary. And she also, interestingly enough, opened the first aromatherapy store ever in North America when she was just 22 years old.
So, Nadine, welcome to the show.
Nadine: Hi. Thank you. I'm so excited to be here.
Ben: Yeah. Well, I'm stoked to talk to you. I feel like after reading your books, this is one of those podcasts that could go for like 10 hours if you really wanted to, but there's some specific little rabbit holes that I want to go down. But I'm very, very curious because you have such a unique spin that folks are going to get filled in on as we go down the beauty and the oral rabbit hole here.
I'm curious just how you developed this body of knowledge, especially starting an aromatherapy store when you were 22 years old. How did this all come to be for you?
Nadine: Well, it's certainly been such a fun adventure. I don't know if it's always this direct path, but with hindsight, you get a little bit of hindsight as you grow. And what I see is this sort of kaleidoscope of moments that just divinely design my life in a way. And it's even from seemingly meaningless micro-moments of like mushing mud, and pressing petals, and getting into my mom's powders and perfumes and putting the mud in there, or taking the skull and crossbones bottle and mixing that with her Joy perfume. I mean, those were really early meanderings, but just adoring nature and just focusing it, collecting saps, putting it in shells, leaving them in my drawers to rot to the delight of my mom. And/or just declaring in Grade 5 to my family I would never work in an office building or work 9:00 to 5:00, or like the Grade 9 science fair where I literally got to make perfumes and realized where they came from, and the history in Egypt, and then going to my first health food store to find these things called essential oils, and getting a whiff of this other world. I didn't quite know at the time the difference between naturals and synthetics. And I was knee-deep in a teenage hood at the time where I think a consumer culture was added zenith.
So, I had it all and it was a really quick dive, and I had fun giving my friends makeovers on long school trips to like Washington in the back of the bus and all this fun stuff. Then, I got to university, and I was 18, and living on my own, which was great, and making food more, all this independent stuff. I've got to explore some really great — it was in some good subjects. So, I got to dive into things like studying midwifery, which I'd never heard about before, or looking at Madonna and her effect on pop culture, or examining the horrors of IUD or birth control pills. We were reading our bodies ourselves as a textbook in one of my classes, which was amazing. I wrote my thesis on the female orgasm. So, I was doing all that at home, at my university home. I was like mixing things up. And then, I would skip class sometimes and I saw Lisa Bonet on Donahue.
Ben: I don't know who that is. Lisa Bonet?
Nadine: Oh, so she's married to Jason Momoa.
Ben: I don't know who that is either, but I'm so disconnected from pop culture. It's not even for me.
Nadine: It's okay. It took me years to know who the Kardashians were. So, it's okay.
Ben: Yeah. I still don't really know who they are aside from people make butt jokes about them.
Nadine: Well, Lisa Bonet is a lovely, lovely lady and she was on shows when I was —
Nadine: She was on the Bill Cosby Show, the one where —
Nadine: Yeah. But then, this was like later than that, and then she was on the talk show that was like Oprah at the time.
Ben: Okay. Gotcha.
Nadine: So anyway, Lisa Bonet, they were talking actually about “Diet for a New America,” which was talking about the connection between like food, and the environment, and pesticides, like we didn't even realize back then that food and health were connected. So, that was just fascinating, and that led me to just dive into health and health food stores. I even had a little health food store that I walked home every day — by every day was in this house, and it was called Grains and Beans and Things, and I bought every book and every bean in there. I just was into a whole new world making oat milk and all this really early stuff, but I really started understanding how the supermarket and the food system worked, and that whole conglomerate and reading labels, and just the BS layered into that system, which was just so easy to go, “Oh, my god, let me look at what I think is my green beauty products.”
And then, it just all came together so quickly. It was really only a period of a few weeks where I just transitioned to never eating processed food, only eating organic, and then really diving into making my own skincare because I didn't want to put that stuff on my body. And again, I just realized it was all just this like petroleum promised land, just put with fancy labels. There's no dewberry berry. There's no — like, the body shop had like this fuzzy peach bath oil that I like, but there's no peach in there, and there's no cucumber.
Ben: Yeah. So, even when a beauty product says something like peach or cucumber, that's not actually what it is?
Ben: So, what is it? How do they get that same flavor, or I guess I should say like aroma of, say, peach or cucumber? And don't tell me the beaver anus extract thing because that's all I hear.
Nadine: Well, that's in that world, but it's been going on for decades and it's a very crafty area of the food and flavor industry. And I mean, crafty in the sense of like, I mean, there it is precision. I mean, the skills of the synthetic world and creating nature identicals is fancy and decades old. I mean, now they're even growing sense out of bacteria and stuff for perfumes, but they'll take something that's natural and then isolate it. And also, most of the essential oils that have been in production in the world for the past 60, 70 years, they're not for the sweet little aromatherapy industry, they're for the food and flavor industry. So, peppermint would be grown, and then menthol would be then extracted and syntheticized to create nature identicals, and that kind of thing. And that's also because the price is crazy. So, true Rose Otto distilled from beautiful roses is about $20,000 a kilo.
Ben: Holy cow.
Nadine: And synthetic rose is like, whatever, 20 bucks a kilo.
Ben: Okay. So, that's why when my wife is buying beauty products and she's getting stuff like whatever — I have a hard time keeping track of the brands that she's using. I've seen Living Libations in her drawer before, but then I think it's Annmarie is another one and — I use some of the Alitura stuff, but the price tag is definitely higher than if you're just shopping the bargains on Amazon or Macy's or something like that. And so, a big part of it is the actual ingredients being actual natural ingredients.
Nadine: Yeah. And then, how is it being made? Is it being made by humans that are paid well? And where are the raw materials coming from? And is that a whole ethical situation? So, that would make a difference. But at the same time, you can get a totally petroleum [00:13:40] _____ synthetic situation for $1,000 too if you want.
Ben: Wow. Okay. So, I want to ask you a few questions about your books. I found some things really intriguing and I think people should read both of your books, the “Holistic Dental Care” one, and then also “Renegade Beauty.” But of course, I always like to use these podcasts as a way to get into some of the nitty-gritties that I'm personally curious about because I always read all my authors' books cover to cover. And I have, actually surprising to me, I have more pages folded over in your “Dental Care” book than in “Renegade Beauty,” but I almost feel like there's so much in both books I could possibly interview you twice about both of these.
But the first thing that you get into, at least one of the things that you talked about that I hadn't heard of before was that our teeth and our mouth actually have something very similar to almost like a lymph flow system. We have this fluid that moves around through our mouth. This blew my mind. I'd never read about this so-called dentinal fluid system before. Can you explain what that is and how it actually works?
Nadine: Yes. And really, you've nailed it. This is the key thing that is huge, and unknown, and so vital to our understanding of teeth. And you know how I found this — it's a lot easier to find now, but in the early odds, I was doing my research here and trying to understand the scope of teeth because I didn't think we had it right as a culture. I had this really rare book from Dr. Hal Huggins, who was just a great renegade dentist who was speaking about the horrors of mercury filling since 1963. And he wrote a book called, I believe I write, called “Why Raise Ugly Kids,” which is a tongue-in-cheek kind of guy, but there was a chapter on dental care, which I devoured. And there's just this one little paragraph where he talked about everything he'd ever learned about in school was washed away like sandcastles on a beach when he talked to Dr. Ralph Steinman.
So, I endeavored to find this research and I found it. And now, since then, there's a whole book that you can buy of all of his studies, which were thousands of them. And so, it's become a lot more accessible. But here, this is the story behind it. Up until about the 1950s, the generally held belief was that a tooth was this sort of inert or dead appendage in the mouth, and a cavity occurred, which was based on an acidogenic theory. So, all the cavities were just coming from like acids and sugars sitting on the teeth. That was what was deemed. The theories at the time even by the Dental Association —
Ben: Yeah. It's I think a lot of people still kind of sort of think when I talk to folks.
Nadine: Oh, yeah.
Nadine: Because that's nothing's changed in the schooling of dentists. Any dentist that really is leading-edge, and biological, and knows their stuff has basically had to undo what they've learned, which is the same with like functional medicine. So, at this time, Dr. Ralph Steinman was just like a normal dentist guy, but he had severe allergies that would stop him completely from working in August. And he was able to cure his allergies by eliminating what he called all the white food. So, that's like the 1950s bread and sugar and all that, and milk, and dairy. So, he knew there must be a systemic connection of the teeth in the body, and he really started to question these beliefs. So much, in fact, that he closed down his practice and just solely went into the studying and answering the question of how are the teeth connected to the body.
And really, I feel like this is even understanding even where we left off from like Descartes theories, right? We're just separated from our bodies, like we're really recovering that from that philosophy in so many ways with our bodies and our health, and of course, it's come up with the relationship to our teeth. So, he developed a technique using fluorescent dye, which is the type using X-rays. And of course, this is all with lab rats because that's what they use. But he was able to visualize the fluid flow inside the teeth, and he was able to trace it from the intestines. He found that indeed, there really is a fluid, a lymphatic fluid that originates in the intestines and flows up to and through the roots of the teeth into the pulp chamber, much like a tree drawing in nutrients from the roots into the sap. And so, this fluid gets pushed into the pulp chamber, and then pushed up and out onto the teeth through the odontoblast where it's like this microscopic sweat that ends up like these microbeads on the enamel providing again a very microscopic —
Ben: It's crazy. So, our teeth basically sweat?
Nadine: Yeah, they totally sweat, and then they're coalescing with the saliva, which is like a whole dance of information, and nutrients, and protection. Oh, let's go to that tooth because it's showing signs of stress. So, of course, we're completely designed brilliantly by infinite intelligence and our bodies have something within it because we weren't born with a toothbrush in our hands, so to speak, right? So, what are the systems? I really like to maximize systems, but I'm really always trying to find that part where there's the least amount of effort.
Nadine: So, for me in body care and my relationship to my body, it's like, where is that? Where is actually — like, where should I be getting out of the way and letting the body do what it's supposed to do?
Ben: Okay. So, this dentinal flow, it basically flushes toxins out from the tooth and brings nutrients into the matrix of the tooth, and repels a lot of the microbial biofilm that would form on the tooth surfaces, and it's literally just like flowing in and out of our mouths throughout the day. And it sounds like it originates — does it actually originate in the gut, like in the intestine and flow up to the tooth from there, or does it originate from somewhere else?
Nadine: That's a great question, and Dr. Steinman really wanted to know that as well. So, he paired up with an endocrinologist and they found that the switch of course is the hypothalamus. And I say “of course” because I feel like everything goes back to that. And so, what happens is we chew and those substrates activate the parotid glands, which are largest salivary glands in mouth, and then that releases hormonal communications to the hypothalamus, which then is creating cascade of information throughout the body. I mean, the journey starts in the mouth when you're chewing to send the signals and the food. And then, it does connect in the gut, but then once — and it's interesting because apparently, from the whole chemical communication system, from sort of the mouth to when it happens to the gut, it takes about six minutes.
Nadine: But then from the root of the tooth up until where it's going to go to the top of the teeth, like sort of come out as this microscopic sweat, apparently, that short journey actually takes an hour, but the longer journey takes about six minutes.
Ben: Okay. So, it's coming from the hypothalamus?
Nadine: Yeah. I mean, as a messaging molecule, as a messaging system. But this is the interesting thing, or it's like all interesting of course, but when this system is compromised, so that's when the dentinal flow will actually — it will at first stagnate when the body is stressed, or your minerals and sugar is off, but not because it's sitting on your tooth, but because of the blood sugar situation, because we know once we have high blood sugar, there's a whole series of body systems that start to rebel. Or it could be chatting on your cell phone with that cell phone right near your parotid gland or other chemicals that are stressing you, or peak hormonal time, sort of like pregnancy or teenage years, there can be stress.
So, what at first happens is this flow stagnates, so you're not getting the nutrients coming as abundantly, but then if it's just continuing down that path, it actually reverses. So, instead of the flow flowing inwards and upwards and being nutritive, what happens is it reverses and the mouth begins to suck in stuff from the mouth like a straw. So, it actually reverses, and then we're bringing in — we're sucking in acids and microbes into the tooth, which then inflames the pulp inside the tooth causing oxidative damage, demineralization or rotting roots. And that's actually the genesis of how cavities are formed.
Ben: Wow. And one thing that I thought was really interesting, because you talk about the parotid gland and how integral it is to this secretion of this tooth sweat, which is what I'm going to call it because it sounds better than dentinal flow. So, what was interesting was you commented about fluoride and how fluoride could actually suppress hormonal secretion by the parotid gland, which would then cause a decrease in this dentinal flow, which just blows my mind because fluoride is found in most toothpaste.
Nadine: Exactly. I mean, and then there's everything else fluoride does, which it really is sort of messing up with the molecules, like it will make skin stiff, but bones soft because it's really tripping a main switch in the enzymatic systems.
Ben: Yeah. I'm not a huge fan of fluoride aside from I have seen some data that shows that it can prevent cavities, but the problem is once it gets out of the teeth and absorbed into the bloodstream and finds its way into the rest of the body, your little bits get swallowed down into the digestive system. It appears to be somewhat problematic. I'm not convinced that's a huge issue for just like the surface of the teeth, but it seems to have a lot of other full-body effects that considering there are some alternatives, and I actually want to talk to you about a few of the things that you do for your own dental care, I'm just not convinced that it's God's gift to dental kind —
Nadine: Yeah. And there's other options that just don't have those side effects.
Ben: Yeah. Exactly. Okay. So, one of the things that you have that's really intriguing in the book is you have eight different steps for dental care, and these are not things like just brush your teeth twice a day. I think you've got some really interesting tips. So, I want to unpack a few of these tips. One of the tips that you say is to keep a saltwater solution where you brush your teeth. What do you do with that saltwater solution? Why do you have a saltwater solution where you brush your teeth?
Nadine: Yeah. It's like the place where you start. So, it can be saltwater. Some people also do baking soda or a combo of each, and that's just like a salty brine you can keep in a Mason jar in your fridge, and then you can have like different shot glasses for family members, or whatever. But the main thing there is you're just setting the tone, setting the stage for the mouth. Maybe you've eaten things during the day that were a little more acidic, and this way, you're getting the saliva in its happy alkaline flow.
Nadine: And you can just be rinsing out other stuff. It's also good for kids because they — teeth brushing is a skill that doesn't fully develop 'til there's more dexterity.
Ben: Okay. So, the salt, are you kind of — because I coconut oil pull in the morning, meaning, I make these little coconut pulling molds. It's super simple. I just get a few drops of essential oil and melt the coconut oil on the stovetop in a — what do you call it? A pot. And then, after it's melted, I just pour it into little molds, like the same kind of molds you would use to make little dark chocolates. Mine are shaped like Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. So, every morning, it feels like you get to eat a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup. And I chew actually only about half of it and I let it swish around in my mouth. I always use different essential oils, and right now, I'm using Thieves, which is great with COVID and everything going around, and my immune system need a little extra support.
So, I coconut oil pull with this Thieves essential oil, and then just spit it out in the trashcan after like 10 or 15 minutes, and swish it all over in my mouth during that time. And so, are you doing something similar with the saltwater before you brush your teeth?
Nadine: It's like just setting this — I love oil pulling, but actually, I do recommend that a bit later after you've cleansed so you're getting to a deeper cleaning, but you totally — I'd have recipe for that too, and you're right, like you can make it convenient and make it for the kids. And you can even get the tiny little square ones. And then, yeah, use it for fun.
Ben: But you're talking about the coconut oil?
Nadine: Yeah. Sorry, yeah, the coconut oil.
Nadine: So, melt that down, but you can put so many fun things in there. Like you said, the essential oils like oregano, peppermint, tea tree, frankincense, clove, cardamom, cinnamon, all these ones have been used since ancient times.
Ben: Oh, yeah. Well, you have one recipe in your book where you put — you call them Probiotic Tooth Butter Cups, and you put all that stuff in there, but you also put — in addition to essential oil, I noticed you recommend a little bit of activated charcoal in there. And I want to talk to you about charcoal toothpaste later on. And then, a little bit of baking soda for the alkalinity, but then you put probiotics in the coconut pulling oil, which I was curious about because the way I was thinking was that if you have a bunch of essential oils in there, would it just neutralize the probiotics, or are those actually seeding the biome of your mouth when you're doing the coconut oil pulling? So, I was trying to figure that out because I thought it was antibacterial yet there's probiotics getting mixed into it. So, help me understand that.
Nadine: Yeah. That's a great question and I love essential oils so much because they're not just these aromatherapy sort of potpourri things, but if they're true genuine distillates, we have got such pure plant medicine that we can use, and I like to refer to them as botanical biotics because they're selective, they have a selective intelligence. And what's so neat now that we're understanding and researching the microbiome is now, we know why these plants have been used for thousands of years for oral health or otherwise, and we get to see it against the modern science of the microbiome.
So, what we now know is that essential oils act as quorum sensing inhibitors in a very effective manner, which is really something that's so needed right now because we're at this moment of here we are in the aftermath of a lot of antibiotic resistance, and we've been using antibiotics like crazy in the feed and overprescribed, and there's triclosan in our milk, or whatever. It's everywhere. They've been overused, so we don't have the same sort of stealth weapons if we want to bust through biofilms and that kind of thing. But now, we can see, or now we have the studies that show that quorum sensing, the essential oils can inhibit that. And what quorum sensing is, it's a way for the pathogens to communicate and coordinate their group behavior to gain traction and to regulate gene expression.
And so, the essential oils like clove, rose, tea tree, some of the ones I mentioned, they really show promising results that they can reduce the QSI activity. And in one study, I think it was clove showed that it could reduce quorum sensing by up to 70%. So, what we're seeing is that the essential oils can create anti-infective activity that can co-exist with our flora while cleaning up the periodontal pathogens.
Ben: Interesting. So, quorum sensing, that's just the regulation of gene expression that's going to happen in response to something like exposure to aromatherapy or essential oils?
Nadine: Yeah. Well, the molecules can go in there and bust up the biofilm in a way that an antibiotic can, and it can, which is good because it's like the biofilms prevent the respiration cycle of our teeth because our teeth also breathe, which is why it's important to not use something even as simply it seems benign like glycerin in toothpaste because it will coat the teeth even if after you've rinsed it. The saliva and the teeth aren't having this sort of respiration cycle.
Ben: Hey, I want to interrupt today's show to tell you about an addictive chemical called nicotine. My sponsor is going to kill me for saying it like that, but it is true. I mean, nicotine is a little bit addictive, so is coffee, so is exercise, so is sunshine, incidentally. But anyways, nicotine is also, a lot of people don't realize this, fantastic for coordination, for memory, for reaction time, for your mitochondria. Everybody shoves it under the bust because they associate nicotine with the downsides of smoking. But if you can get a delivery mechanism that doesn't involve a cigarette, holy cow, nicotine is actually pretty amazing.
So, yeah. I mean, if you start using it, you're probably going to want to use it. And you know what, as a guy who drinks coffee in the morning and wakes up the next morning and wants to have a cup of coffee, I'm fine with that. So, I think about this kind of stuff. I don't over abuse nicotine, but I've been popping a couple pieces of this Lucy nicotine gum each day. You tuck it away in the corner of your mouth, seeps in your bloodstream, wakey, wakey, wonderful for the mitochondria, amps you up a little bit, feels good, burns clean, and they got wintergreen, cinnamon, and pomegranate flavors, they got a cherry ice lozenge. You get 20% off of anything from Lucy also. You just go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/lucy, L-U-C-Y, BenGreenfieldFitness.com/lucy, and use code BEN20 for 20% off of any of the fine products at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/lucy.
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Before we close the loop on coconut oil pulling, at what time of day would you cook an oil pull if you're going to do it? Because you mentioned you might not do it at the same time I'm doing it.
Nadine: Yeah. Well, I think the same time, but I would just do a few steps first, and it really is debatable. Some people still oil pull before they do the eight steps. I just like doing it after because I've cleared away stuff, and then I feel like the oil pulling can just go a bit deeper and get to the deeper work, if that makes sense. And so, I do it around right after I've done the eight steps as part of the TLC and aftercare.
Nadine: It's a great fun to — like, I think I recall in one of your podcasts, you talked about making a Spilanthes infused coconut oil?
Ben: Oh, yeah. The electric tooth berry that I found down in Hawaii?
Nadine: So, you could make the tooth buttercups out of that.
Ben: Yeah. I did that one time. I'm ahead of you, Nadine. I got that figured out.
Ben: Yeah. And they actually tasted really good and they cause a bunch of salivary flow, too. And for those of you who missed the memo on that, I went down to Kauai Organic Farmacy, shout out to my friend Doug down there, and he introduced me to this tiny little berry that when you pop it in your mouth, not only does it clean the mouth and have a ton of really cool antibacterial effects, but it feels like a party in your mouth, and you produce all this saliva. It's got this weird tart sour-ish taste. And so, I thought, “Dude, I wish this could grow up in Washington.” And so, I just bought some little potters and a little — something similar like a cannabis grow light, stuck it down my office, ordered some seeds off Amazon and plant them in soil in my office, and they just grew like weeds. So, I had tons of these tooth berries. Then I planted them outside and they grew outside, too.
Ben: And then, I could just harvest them and mix them with some oils or just pop them after a meal and they're amazing. And people would come over to our house and they'd pop one in their mouth, their mind would be blown. Some people didn't like the weird tart sour-ish salivary feeling of them.
Ben: Yeah, but they're really cool. They're called the electric tooth berry, the Spilanthes berry. And you can just buy the seeds on Amazon.
Nadine: And so, that's a fun thing to oil pull with as well. You can make it fun. And you can even add some C60, or you can anoint C60 on your gums afterwards, too.
Ben: You like C60 for oral care?
Ben: Cool. Just as an antioxidant?
Nadine: Yeah. And just you could add it to dental serums.
Nadine: I think it's showing promising things in skincare, too. And really, the gums are a type of tissue.
Ben: Gotcha. Alright. So, you get up and you have this warm water, kind of like a warm brine water that you keep in the bathroom. And maybe you'll add a little bit of essential oil, too. And you're just kind of swishing, swishing, and spitting that in the morning?
Nadine: Yeah. So, that one's easy, just like a nice swish gargle, always good.
Ben: Okay. So, that's going to introduce some alkalinity for the other steps that you take?
Ben: Okay. Gotcha.
Nadine: The next step is tongue scraping. Do it a few times. And I think you'll find as the weeks progress, there's just less and less stuff coming out off the tongue, which is good.
Ben: And I have actually started doing that. It's super easy because it only takes me two seconds. You think about some of this stuff and you're like, “Oh, man, how do you do this and that?” And honestly, it seems like it adds up, but it doesn't take that much time. And I'm always listening to an audiobook or something in the morning and it just feels really good to be taking care of my whole body right when I get up. So, when I scrape my tongue, it gets all this kind of like white microbial mucousy stuff off my tongue as I scrape that from back to front. I think I'm using the tongue scraper right now from — it's like a copper tongue scraper. I think it's Dirt where I got it from.
Nadine: We have a couple tongue scrapers too, the copper one as well, just so you know.
Ben: Oh, Living Libations has one?
Ben: Okay. Cool. I'll have to connect you after the show and see if we can get some kind of a discount code for people to use on your $8 billion products that are just chock-full of natural ingredients. Okay. So, you scrape your tongue from back to the front and you see all this plaque being removed from the tongue, which I think is really cool. And one thing I was curious about, just a little thing I got a little bit nervous about was, are you cleaning the tongue scraper pretty intensively? Because I'm just running mine into little hot water and soap, just because again, I'm trying to save time in the morning.
Nadine: Oh, yeah. I just do hot water and soap, too. And then, once in a while, like once a month, I'll just dip everything in hydrogen peroxide overnight.
Ben: Okay. Gotcha. And then, you go on and you brush, but you say that you start with brushing the gums, not the teeth. So, fill me in on that.
Nadine: Yeah. So, we really, as a whole culture, need to get just a little softer and more mindful about our gums because it's like one of the keys keeping the teeth in place and preventing things from feeling sensitive. Because teeth sensitivity is actually a gum issue, it's not really a tooth issue. So, you want to brush. You want to get that manual brush just right up — at the top row right up into your cheek practically, and you're brushing down towards the teeth. You're not going back and forth, it's down, lift-off, down. Obviously, it's going to take a moment to retrain, but again, it will come more naturally because the sulca, that place where the gum line and the teeth join up, is just so precious and so vulnerable. And we're definitely a nation of receding gum lines and we've got to bring the gums back around the teeth more like turtlenecks instead of the current sort of cowl neck situation where the gum pockets are like six, seven, eight, nine for a lot of people. And it's very important because also, when that enamel gets exposed that was previously under the gum line, it's a different type of enamel, it's weaker, and gum line cavities are a big issue.
Ben: Interesting. Yeah. I never thought too much about brushing the gums. And even when I've been to the dentist, I think this is because my coconut oil pulling, they tell me I have really healthy gums, but —
Nadine: I'm sure they do.
Ben: — I think I need to think a little bit more about this. Now, what toothbrush do you use for this?
Nadine: Well, I love that ionic toothbrush, which is nice because it magnetizes the plaque off.
Ben: That sounds really expensive, an ionic toothbrush?
Nadine: They're not.
Nadine: Luckily, they're like 20, 30 bucks.
Nadine: Yeah. Dr. Tung‘s has it. We had them, but they're out right now, but they're pretty easy to find. Also, just a manual one or there's one that's called a blotting brush, which again, it's just really about the gums and always soft. Whether you're a 200-pound firefighter or a baby, we need to use soft.
Ben: I've always gone medium. That sucks. I just ordered a bunch of new bamboo toothbrushes. I think I ordered medium. So, I'm supposed to order soft.
Nadine: Just go a little bit lighter then with your wrist action.
Ben: Oh, I should have read your book more carefully. Okay. And then, the ionic toothbrush, that just makes like negative ions that help to clean up plaque?
Nadine: Yeah. Even without toothpaste, it's actually removing, apparently from the studies, 40% more plaque, which I don't know percentage-wise, but you can definitely feel the difference. Like if you just took a normal brush with water or that one, you would feel the difference.
Nadine: So, yeah, and that's that. And also, you're adding a drop, hopefully, of dental serum or botanical biotics because you want to bring some energy, and nutrients, and vascularization to the gums.
Ben: Yeah. You sell those, right, these dental serums?
Ben: And what are those exactly?
Nadine: Well, I think I invented them.
Ben: Oh, wow.
Nadine: I think that even though there's many knockoffs now, but they're blends. We've got the Yogi Tooth Serum, the Happy Gum Drop soil, we've got a mint and myrrh version, we've got matching swishing serums, which are our oil pulling serums, which we add like CoQ10 and probiotics and different things like that to them as well. But I always love to give the — you don't need to buy anything from me and you can literally turn your mouth around with common things you can find at home. So, get in a new toothbrush if you've been working with commercial toothpaste because you just want to have a fresh, clean bristles. And if you just bought baking soda and sea salt and then just ditched anything commercial and used baking soda and sea salt for the rest of your life, your whole mouth would be so much better off than using Crest, and that kind of thing.
Ben: Interesting. Okay. Cool. Now, you brush the gums, but then I would imagine, you also brush your teeth, don't you?
Nadine: Yeah. So then, the next, Step 4 is to focus on the teeth and you're going to polish them with an electric toothbrush at this part, for this stage. I like the smaller round-headed electric brushes because they get into a — there's a different shape and sort of the classic toothbrush. But soon, I've been researching for years and finally have found a toothbrush that's a special angle, and it's Sonic. So, we're going to be introducing that. It has a special pick, like a brush pick that also comes through Sonic. So, it's like really the most plaque I felt.
Ben: Oh, it's got like a water pick type of thing built into it?
Nadine: Yeah. More like a little — oh, god, almost like a little tuft of a bristle. So, it's just tiny and you can get right in between.
Ben: Okay. You have to remember to tell me when this comes out. My dentist is going to hate you because I'm never going to go to the dentist to get cleaned again after learning all this stuff.
Nadine: Yeah. Well, you got to go to a good dentist for the cleaning, too. And yeah, hopefully, you'll be going less and less because we can really take care of our mouths at home, and really wherever your mouth is at because it can be once you go into understanding sort of the horrors of modern dentistry and some of the things we've been doing, it can be a bit overwhelming, or your teeth are sensitive, or you're — we can feel a bit down in the mouth after we've been to the dentist because we feel like there's a lot of problems that are hard to solve.
But truly, I want people to know that you really can turn your mouth around, and that's because it is connected to the rest of the body because it is inextricably bound, saliva flowing, and we can help gum pockets come back down to a healthy two or three. Bleeding and receding can cease in a couple of days. So, really, people can turn around their mouth. And I have found these eight steps really help to evolve and make people's even dental visits more successful if they do these eight steps for a month or three.
Ben: Okay. [00:43:03] _____ Step 4 so far. We started with the saltwater rinse, and then you scrape your tongue, then you brush your gums, then you polish your teeth preferably using one of these space-agey toothbrushes that Nadine just described. And I'll link to all this stuff in the shownotes. I'll hunt it all down. And then, checking the gum lines is Step 5. That sounds really laborious. What's that involved?
Nadine: Well, it's not too laborious, but you just take like a rubber tip tool or like an interdental thing and you just go right around the gum line. Once you have done it a few times, you'll get pretty fast at it, but you'll see why because all of a sudden, a whole bunch more plaque will come off. And again, this is the area we really want to keep free and clear of plaque because the plaque kind of makes the gums go, “Oh,” and they keep scaling back, getting pushed back by the plaque.
Ben: Okay. And you use a special tool for this?
Nadine: Well, there's so many out now. And actually, I am inventing another one that should be out in the fall and it's made out of silicone. But until that time, there's like a — it's by GUM, that classic one, and it's a rubber-tipped tool. So, just something soft. They can move along the gum line. And you'll see why when you're doing it.
Nadine: And then, to upgrade that, just put a little dental serum on the tip. So, like a drop of the Yogi Tooth Serum or like a peppermint essential oil, and then you can get it in those crevices and in between the teeth as well, which is where that detail is needed.
Ben: Okay. Got it. I think the next step people are probably going to be familiar with, and that's flossing. Do you have any special way of flossing, or did you just say floss?
Nadine: Well, generally, you floss. Find a good floss that works for your teeth because all different spaces between the teeth. But you want to floss, and I say do it twice, and you'll know why you do it the second time because it's a lot of stuff comes out in the second round. But to truly upgrade that and to get all the special ingredients up in between each teeth, you want to take one drop of a dental serum and slide that along the floss, and then do your flossing, and it's such a game-changer.
Ben: Okay. And as far as the floss goes, you're fine with just the standard dental floss?
Nadine: We don't like petroleum waxing. We sell a Dr. Tung's floss, which I like, but also by the time this podcast air, we'll have our new zero-waste floss, which comes in little glass jars, and we've infused with frankincense. And then, we've done another flavor that we've infused with charcoal and lemongrass and wintergreen.
Ben: Alright, got it. So, we've got the saltwater solution, then you scrape the tongue, brush your gums, brush your teeth, check for any plaque with this little gum line checker, and then floss. That's six steps. What would Step 7 be?
Nadine: Step 7 is doing another mouth rinse with your saltwater switch.
Ben: Another one?
Nadine: Yup, because now you've loosened everything up.
Nadine: There'll be things that came off on the floss, but kind of halfway, so you get that out. You can also add maybe even a couple drops of liquid magnesium to that as well. That's a nice alkalinizer. And then, this is where you could do your oil pulling or your tooth buttercups. So, you're swishing, swishing, swishing.
Ben: Okay. Got it. Now, how long are you doing that swish for?
Nadine: Ten to 15 minutes, ideally.
Ben: Oh, geez. How long are you in the bathroom in the morning taking care of your teeth?
Nadine: No. I'm just doing all the steps for about two, three minutes.
Nadine: Then I'm swishing, and then I'll walk around and do other stuff.
Ben: Okay. So, you're walking around. That's what I do when I coconut oil pull is I'm walking around and getting stuff done. Yeah. Otherwise, it seems like —
Nadine: Yeah. I don't have too much tolerance for standing in the —
Ben: I don't stand there looking at myself in the mirror flexing my muscles while I'm oil pulling. Okay. And then, what's Step 8?
Nadine: Then Step 8 is just like an extra care step. So, a lot of people have like receding gums or maybe one spot is bleeding or something like that. So, at that point, maybe you have to pull out your dental mirror, check on things in the back, or whatever is going on your mouth that needs the special care. And then, you will anoint a botanical biotic or something to that area that needs the extra care, a dental serum. And you'll know that when it comes to your mouth. And we also have these syringes that are blunt-tipped that for that extra care, you can put things in there like dental serum or hydrogen peroxide. It's kind of like a very, very micro-controlled water pick, but it's a lot more fine, and it's actually easier and really simple to travel with as well because it's just a little syringe. And then, you can really flush out those gum lines in between the teeth. So, the Step 8 is really just the extra care that your teeth might need.
Ben: Okay. Now, you have all these steps really well-detailed in your book, but I think perhaps one of the things that is probably causing a great deal of people listening in right now to think, “What in the hell? Why are you spending so much time on these white things inside your mouth?” But one thing you get into in the book that I think doesn't get talked about much is the relationship between the teeth and all the other organs. And this is more of like a traditional Chinese medicine concept, but it is really interesting that teeth have a certain effect on certain organs to the extent to where like I had some crowns put in. And I only work with a holistic dentist, which is great. So, they're using all-natural materials and they're cleaning the air and making sure metals aren't getting in my mouth, et cetera.
But when I had my crowns done, they kind of shaved down the teeth underneath the crowns that they put on, and I was looking over the meridian chart because I had a really, really tender upper right quadrant after they'd been working, especially on — I think it would be — I don't even know the numbering system used for the teeth, but it was kind of like close to the incisors, and looked it up and it was the two teeth associated with gallbladder and liver function because they're apparently like key lines or electrical meridians that run from the teeth to different organs of the body. Now, is that true, like could you get dental work done on a certain tooth and actually have it affect the organ, or could you have a tooth that may be because you weren't using a lot of the steps that you detail in the book, the tooth gets unhealthy, how much can that affect the health of the organ? Like, is this stuff ever been researched?
Nadine: I definitely believe that there are key lines and energy meridians in the body, and there's a whole network. I mean, think of traditional Chinese medicine or acupuncture. That's the system it's based on. So, I think there's a lot of validity to that. I don't know if it has fully been studied, but I have definitely seen what I feel is like I've sort of seen proved in my own world is when I look at thermography images that have been taken, now they're not — thermography is like a type of imaging that can be done for breast health to see if there's anything going on instead of a mammography, or it can be part of that toolkit and it doesn't have the radiation and the dangers of a mammogram.
So, the thermography readings show the heat line signatures. And when they include the head with the upper body for this imaging, you can see the heat line signatures going from a root canal to the breast, and you can just see the lines. And some of those back molars are related to the breast organs as well. So, that was knowing about the tooth organ chart before, and then seeing the thermography images was quite an eye-opener. But definitely, because it's interconnected to the body and every tooth contains like blood vessels, cranial-sacral fluid, the dentinal fluid, of course, it's going to be connected to the body's physiological functions.
Ben: Yeah. I think there's definitely something to that because we know, for example — and this isn't necessarily due to invisible electrical lines that run through the body, but more inflammation from what I understand that teeth health is very intimately related to cardiovascular health. And that's something I really explored with a previous fella that I had on the show about a holistic dentistry. So, I won't dwell upon that topic too much, but I will link to that other interview I did a few weeks ago with the author of a different book on holistic dentistry. And we got into the pretty significant link between cardiovascular health and oral health, which is actually fascinating in and of itself. Yeah. His name was Dominik — German guy. I forget his last name. I don't have it in front of me right now. But anyways, I'll link to it in the shownotes.
Nadine: I recently did a podcast with Dr. Gundry and he did an experiment with flossing and some control groups, and they found that the people that had flossed had much less inflammation in their bodies.
Ben: Yeah. It's interesting. But then again, maybe you start flossing, and you also start eating healthy, and you also start exercising. Like some of these lifestyle changes tend to stack, but yeah, I think there's probably something to be said. Okay.
So, I promised that I would mention this so I'd be remiss not to, but I did a podcast a while back and it was kind of like a refutation of this Vice article that came out just shoving a ton of holistic health practices under the bus, everything from coffee enemas and detox protocols to charcoal toothpaste. And they were very concerned about a British — I think it was a British Dental Journal or a British Medical Journal article that came out claiming that charcoal could wear away enamel, and in particular, that it was really kind of like a marketing gimmick. And ultimately, what they found was that the charcoal toothpaste was too abrasive for the teeth and was actually inhibiting oral health and not helping the teeth. And I'm curious to hear your take on that because there are a few places within the book where you seem to be okay with using charcoal to clean the teeth.
Nadine: I do like charcoal and I heard about that article, too. And so, we've definitely gone into it a bit more and rechecked what we thought, but still we actually feel that activated charcoal is still safe for oral care, and this is how we're thinking about it. And it seems pretty legit because this is how they measure the abrasivity of dental products. So, there's two ways to gauge the abrasivity safety and one is called the MOH hardness value. It's spelled M-O-H. And the other one is the relative dentin abrasivity called RDA. So, MOH is a 1 to 10 scale of hardness. So, 1 would be like talc powder, and 10 is a diamond. Tooth enamel is about a 5.5, and the dentin is about a 2.5. So, when you use the MOH scale to determine if the substance is too abrasive for the enamel, then you would compare the MOH hardness value of a compound against the hardness of tooth enamel.
Nadine: Activated charcoal is a one to two on the MOH scale. And for comparison, baking soda is about a 2.5 on the same scale. So, it shouldn't scratch the teeth during brushing because it's significantly less hard than enamel and dentin. And also, we know baking soda is safe even though that gets questioned a lot too because then if we look at the other tests, which is the RDA, which is used to gauge the erosiveness of abrasives in oral care products. So, this is the test. And so, a higher the RDA value is, then higher the chance of abrasion. So, 70 and under is considered low, and anything over 200 is considered unsafe for oral care.
The RDA of baking soda is a seven. So, it's very, very gentle. And we do get dentists that are like, “Oh, I don't know about baking soda.” So, it's a seven. And our toothpastes are generally — that's their abrasive factor is just the baking soda. So, we have very gentle toothpaste and we have one paste made with activated charcoal, and the activated charcoal has an RDA value of 70. So, it's a bit higher than baking soda, but check this out. The RDA of Crest is 106. Crest Pro-Health is 189. Tom's of Maine for sensitive teeth is a softer 49. Tom's of Maine regular is in 93. Nature's Gate is 176. So, that's something you could find at the health food store. Sensodyne, 93. Colgate, and something like a Colgate Tartar Control is 165.
Ben: Well, that's one of the problems is like research that gets released, then gets distorted by media and bloggers who kind of like crank up the neutral statement and say that it's actually making a black and white statement or something that calls for further study. They turn that into some kind of a serious warning when really, all those British studies seem to say was, “Be careful. It may be too abrasive.” But when you actually dig into the description here, apparently, what use the RDA, the relative dentin abrasivity, is just way too low for it to cause an issue.
Nadine: Yeah. And gentler than everything we're generally using as a population every day to clean our teeth.
Ben: Okay. Alright, good to know. So, activated charcoal is okay. Alright.
And then, I've got a few other questions for you. I've talked about peptides on the show before and I recently found out from you that there are certain peptides that can actually be used for periodontal disease, or oral care, or cavitation cleanups, or extraction. So, what kind of peptides are dentists using in the mouth now? I keep wanting to say oral cavity or something like that because it makes me feel more scientific on the show, but I was going to say mouth. You're gaping MOH.
Nadine: The good old mouth. Well, there's a really — first, I think that peptides are a wonderful tool. I think they're very paramount and very practical for periodontal care, which could be your scientific word for mouth. So, I think they're really good for us to have as tools, especially if you haven't been to the dentist for a while or you've got some revisionist dentistry coming up or there's anything, any kind of minor dental thing, or even a cleaning because cleanings release a lot of bacteria into the bloodstream so much so in fact that you're not able to donate blood within 48 hours of having a dental cleaning.
So, I think we really should boost our immune system and our tissue care with peptides. So, I really feel there's a — in the family of the peptide biologics, I feel there's a good trifecta that I think could be foundational for people to do in the one to three months leading up to a dentist appointment or a minor dental surgery. And that would be, probably a lot of classics for your audience that you already know of them, but the thymosin alpha 1.
Ben: Okay. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Very good one for immune system.
Nadine: Yeah. It's like an immune superhero.
Ben: Yeah. And to clarify, a lot of these peptides are delivered systemically. So, are you just injecting like subcutaneously around the abdomen, or are these getting injected into or near the mouth?
Nadine: I have a mouth protocol, which we could go into, right? Because these ones, this is just sub-Q, wherever you like to do your peptide injections, you don't have to do it around the mouth, it will travel there or it will do what it needs to do in the body. But for the mouth, and we'll write this out because it's pretty detailed with information, but there's a very specific, I think pretty revolutionary peptide protocol with BPC-157 for receding gums that is having success with some really leading-edge biological dentists. And so, what you do is you dilute BPC-157.
Generally, you've got a 5 ml vial of the powder, and then you're going to add in a milliliter of NACI, which is not the typical bacteriostatic water because that's a little bit too painful for gum injections. Then you apply some drop of organic peppermint oil along the gum line a few minutes beforehand, that will clean, and also provide a tiny bit of natural kind of analgesic, peppermints nice and numbing. Then, you just inject 0.25 ml, so like a quarter into the receding gum area, and you do each quadrant.
Ben: So, you're actually injecting into the gums?
Nadine: Yeah. Now, you would ideally be doing this with your holistic dentist or hygienist.
Ben: Yeah. I think most people would be pretty careful with needles near their mouth, but this is something that you could go and ask your dentist about, or potentially even direct your dentist towards something like — is this something that they could learn from an organization such as the International Peptide Society, for example?
Nadine: Yes. I think that would be a great place to learn about it, or you could take these instructions to your dentist and you could even bring them the BPC already diluted and have them do it for you.
Ben: Oh, wow. I wonder how many dents would actually do that though if you bring some random syringe full of stuff and ask them to inject in your mouth. It seems like that would be a concern about the potential —
Nadine: Well, talk to your dentist — oh, true, true, yeah.
Nadine: But you can prepare your dentist, but people are seeing in 10 days visible effects, and this is a very tricky area to heal. So, it is pretty revolutionary.
Ben: Okay. So that's super interesting. And then, the other thing is that you have a really, really handy list of questions that anyone should go into their dentist armed with to be able to ask their dentist. What are those questions? Because I thought that they were actually really helpful. I actually asked my dentist, Dr. Craig Simmons, here in Spokane, who's a great holistic dentist these questions, and his answer seemed pretty satisfactory in terms of the same type of answers that you recommended to be looking for.
But what are the questions? What are the questions that people should really be asking their dentist right now?
Nadine: Yeah. It's good for people to hone in and discern like who's the best dentist for them. I have those in my book. You know what, I've recently thought of three more that I would like to talk about first because I feel like if these three, if you get a yes to them, it's not the right dentist. So, I feel like I even simplified it more, and that would be, do you do implants with titanium?
Ben: With titanium?
Nadine: Yeah. So, if they do that, you do not want to go to that dentist. Your dentist should not have titanium implants anywhere in their practice. So, that's if you get a tooth removed and then you're going to have a tooth implant, and then the rod under the gum line classically is made with titanium, which is one of the most toxic metals.
Ben: Oh, really?
Nadine: Yeah. And that will create basically jaw rot or jaw cavitation.
Ben: So, no titanium, that's number one.
Nadine: No titanium. They hopefully know about zirconium, which is a crystalline structure that seems to be the most immune, autoimmune compatible, which has been used in Europe for about 30 years. And the leading-edge dentists in North America know about zirconium.
Nadine: So, I mean, hopefully, maybe you're getting to a situation where you don't have to do an implant too, but anyway. So, if they use titanium, no go. The other question is, do you do root canals? The answer should be, “No, never.” If it's sometimes, maybe that's not good enough. The dentists that truly know know that all root canals are 100% toxic to the body. They are not sterile.
Ben: Yeah. I did talk about that quite a bit in another podcast. Obviously, we could take a deep dive into root canals, but yeah, we talked about that quite a bit in my other dental podcast that I'll link to. Again, the shownotes for this one are at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/Nadine, N-A-D-I-N-E. So, go listen to that other podcast if you want the full skinny on root canal. So, just don't go to your dentist if they do them.
Nadine: Yeah. They should just really — because if they get it, they'll know — when the dentist gets it, they can't perform them. You know what I mean? They just can't. And then, the other question would be, do you leave in the periodontal ligament when doing an extraction? Because if the answer is yes, that's incorrect. That'd be, hmm, you're off the shelves. So, that periodontal —
Ben: Because that can accumulate an infection, that ligament?
Nadine: Yeah. So, that's classic to leave it in. So, anytime a tooth is extracted or a wisdom tooth, generally, the whole protocol has been you leave it in. What that is akin to is kind of like leaving the placenta in after giving birth. And then, the gum just grows over that ligament and causes jaw rot, which is a jaw cavitation. And jaw cavitations aren't visible on an X-ray until it's 80% eroded. And so, it's not something that can be seen a lot visually, but biological dentists know that any time a tooth is extracted, that periodontal ligament has to be removed. And what biological dentists will do is if you have had previous extractions like your wisdom teeth out, they will check those sites. And 9 times out of 10, they have to clean out, with their tiny instruments, they scrape the jaw bone in that area, scrape away the infection, allow blood flow to the area, allow the blood clot to form, then they will inject ozone, and then your own blood plasma in there to heal the area.
Ben: Okay. Alight. So, we're asking them about that. And then, in addition to the root canal, the periodontal ligament, the titanium, there are a few other interesting ones.
You actually have a whole list in your book, and there are just a couple I want to focus on in the books because obviously, we could spend a lot of time on each of these questions, but you wanted to make sure they use ozone or lasers for cleaning the mouth as opposed to what would normally be used instead of ozone or lasers.
Nadine: Well, they would just use classic dental stuff, which actually, a lot of that paste that they use for the dental cleaning is this really abrasive proxy and they are now realizing that that actually removes this thin film called the pellicle, the salivary pellicle. And so, they're rethinking about using the abrasive prophy paste in twice a year cleanings because they're realizing that they're messing with the enamel a bit because it's too abrasive, speaking about abrasivity. And so, we need new ways to be cleaning and getting rid of microbes rather than just again with abrasiveness and antibiotics.
Ben: Okay. Got it. And then, a couple other questions I thought were interesting was you recommended that your dentist have IV vitamin C drips available during the procedure. Is that even a thing that a dentist does these days?
Nadine: Yeah. Really good ones will do to vitamin C right after because some do — I think some, I don't know if it's during, but they'll pre-prep you, post-prep you.
Ben: Okay. Interesting.
Nadine: Yeah. It's going to help you heal from the situation. Now, I think with peptides and different things, I think we've got way more options than having to rely on the IV drips of vitamin C.
Nadine: But that's like to me, the really good dentists have that in their office.
Ben: Wow. Interesting. Okay. I haven't found any dentist that has that, but that's super interesting. And then, one of the other questions was on the X-rays. Apparently, there's different types of X-rays that are going to expose you to less radiation. So, you can actually ask your dentist about the type of X-rays that they use?
Nadine: Yes. The cone-beam X-ray actually gives them way more data. It's very full panoramic, but with about 90% less radiation. So, there's digital X-rays. Again, a classic dental office might be outdated in their equipment, but if you're — the leading edge dentists, while they're more natural, they're also really using the latest equipment too because there's a lot of innovation in things like the lasers and X-rays that we can take advantage of.
Ben: Okay. Interesting. Wow. There's so much in this book. And then, your book “Renegade Beauty,” we didn't even start to get into, but this one also — I mean, my wife was just eating this thing up as far as the skin beauty and even the — you have like sexual care and some different things. What do you call it? The noni? It's that what you call it, the noni?
Nadine: Yoni, the yoni.
Ben: Yoni, yeah. Why did I say noni? Yoni —
Nadine: Yoni, Sanskrit word. I love —
Ben: Yeah. So, I mean, botanical suppositories that you can use to restore the bacterial status of the colon. I mean, just tons of stuff in both these books.
So, I think that they're quite excellent and I didn't get a chance to delve into some of the stuff that I wanted to ask you about in “Renegade Beauty,” but there actually is one thing that I did think was intriguing, and that was this whole idea of stop, seal, seed, which I think is probably one of the crucial things within the “Renegade Beauty” book. It goes beyond what we've been talking about, the oral care, and kind of gets into skincare. So, if you've got time, can you just briefly describe the overall concept behind stop, seal, seed?
Nadine: Oh, yeah, absolutely. I love that because it does help explain what we need to do. And you remember in the beginning, I spoke about — like I love getting out of the way of my body system. So, I feel like the stop, seal, seed is like the ticket for that. So, first, we want to stop putting petroleum on our face, over-exfoliating using chemicals to deal with acne, showering in chlorine, laser abrasion, all that really harsh picking and prodding that we do to our skin. And which includes stop using surfactants and foaming soapy cleansers to wash our face. We really want to move away from this idea of squeaky clean because now that we understand the microbiome, we understand that these squeaky clean surfactants are actually getting lodged into our stratum corneum, which is the top, top layer of the top layer of our skin.
And these surfactants are like these micro splinters that get stuck in our pores and then they disrupt the whole landscape for the bacteria. And the bacteria are really our beautician as gross as that sounds. We have to get out of the way. We have to stop putting chemicals on our face and over scrubbing, getting rid of the skin cells too early, or the sebum, because that's what the bacteria needs to feed on. There's a whole ecosystem there.
Ben: Wait. So, if somebody is doing like a derma rolling, how often should they be doing that?
Ben: Never? Because I do it like once a week and it's amazing for my skin.
Nadine: It is amazing and there will be good results, but I don't think we have to tear down the skin to make it respond.
Ben: What about something like a salt scrub?
Nadine: Yes. But again, you're going to want to not over-exfoliate. When we're over-exfoliating, which some chemicals do that, there's an abrasivity factor obviously to these things as well. If we get rid of the dead skin cells or that top layer too early, the young cells underneath are too young and too vulnerable and it throws off the microbiome. So, it's kind of like leaving your skin a little more vulnerable, like kind of leaving your front door open on vacation. And so, we don't want to go into the world. We want to go into the world with our microbiome on our skin intact. And next to the gut, the skin microbiome is the largest in the body.
Ben: Okay. So, basically, just stop overcleaning your skin, stop scraping away too many of the skin cells, don't overdo that component?
Nadine: Yeah. And then, that brings to the next step, which is seal because we've got — like we have leaky guts. And if you've got bleeding receding gums, that's kind of like leaky gums. And then, when we're over-exfoliating and doing stuff like that to our skin, then it's kind of like creating some leaks in that beautiful system. So, as I've said, to stop washing with soap. Soap, you just want to have for like pits and bits. Your arm, your thigh, your face does not need soap. And to seal the skin, we use oil, which is an ancient way of cleansing the face and it lifts up dirt, it cares for the sebum. And I love, love, love using jojoba oil as sort of a main oil because it's actually a liquid wax as opposed to an oil, even though it looks like oil, feels like oil.
Ben: You're using the oil to clean?
Ben: Okay. Interesting.
Nadine: People with like cystic acne for 20 years are really nervous, right? They're like, “Really?”
Ben: Yeah. But it sounds like all these cleansers, the different companies send me that have all the different soapy type of components in them, I could instead, when I wash my face in the morning, just use something like — well, usually, I'll use warm water plus one of these cleansers, or I'll use warm water plus oil, or just oil and a washcloth.
Nadine: Yeah. Warm water plus oil.
Ben: Warm water plus oil. Okay. I'll try it.
Nadine: I'm sure we've sent you like a bottle of our best skin ever. I think the frankincense best skin ever or something?
Ben: I don't know. I have a hard time keeping track of all this stuff. I'm sure I can hunt it down.
Nadine: Ask your wife.
Ben: Okay. Yeah. My wife just steals stuff. So, I'll go steal that on her bathroom drawer [01:13:16] _____.
Nadine: So, try that. We have these beautiful organic hemp cloths, which have a nice texture, but it's soft. You would just sort of put warm water in that, splash your face, put a squirt of oil on, run that over your face, another splash, you're good to go, or one more squirt for moisture. So, we've created the best skin ever as the one bottle to do it all, whether you're a man, woman, or child. But essentially, or just use jojoba or beautiful olive oil, and it's such a game-changer. Often, if people do have things like severe acne or eczema, I'm obviously going to be looking at dietary and gut issues. But what I love is that some people just do this. They just switch to washing with oil and they get off the chemical train. And severe acne and very harsh skin conditions evolve by the day, by the hour, by the week as they're doing this, and sometimes with no dietary change whatsoever.
Ben: Interesting. Okay. So, we stop using a lot of these things that are super abrasive to the face, get rid of the biome or some of the cells in the face, then we seal by using oils instead of soaps. And then, the last component is seed.
Nadine: Yes. So, seeding. So, the thought that what's applied to the skin goes in. And so, we want to apply the right things because the skin's ability to absorb is such a gift for us, what we can put into our body transdermally. And so, we don't want to be putting things in that have petroleum or different chemicals and stuff. So, hopefully, we've got a good diet, we can reseed with our food, eating prebiotics, probiotics. And then, you can seed the skin too by being in the sun, which helps to generate microbial peptides. You can use like a honey mask, which is full of enzymes and prebiotics. And so, that's just like feeding and putting the nutrients back into your skin, whether that's through diet or transdermally.
Ben: Okay. Got it, got it. And when it comes to the seeding of the skin, I would imagine that part of this goes hand in hand with this whole notion that a lot of people have these days of not showering or bathing too regularly to maintain the biome of the skin.
Nadine: Yeah. Again, if you have a good source of water, you could shower bathe every day, but you don't need to soap every day.
Ben: Okay, okay. Got it. So, you could use water and that's not going to be as intensive at getting rid of the natural biome on the skin?
Nadine: No. Yeah. Go to town with the water. It's more about the chemicals through the water or that you're applying to your skin.
Ben: Right. Okay. Cool. Wow. There's a lot there. And again, the book “Renegade Beauty” is the one that has the whole protocol for stop, seal, seed, if you guys want to read that one. It's really good. And then, “Holistic Dental Care,” just because I like to geek out on oral care and I'm getting more and more interested in it these days, maybe I missed my true calling. Maybe I should have been a dentist. I don't know. But that also is a really, really good book, this “Holistic Dental Care” book. So good. Actually, I had a dental student over at my house the other day and I loaned it to him. I had to hunt him down and get it back like a couple days before this podcast and be like, “Oh, crap. I know the book. I need to review some of these questions.”
Alright. Well, cool. What I'm going to do is I'm going to link to all this stuff if you're listening and you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/nadine. That's N-A-D-I-N-E. And in the shownotes, I'll not only link to these books but some of the products that we discussed. And I'll also link to Nadine's company, which is called Living Libations, a really, really cool company. It's got to be if my wife stole it all and I can't even find it. So, go check out some of these Living Libations products as well if you want to pick out some of the things that Nadine and I were talking about when it comes to, especially like the gum and the teeth care, and also some of the stop, seal, seed components. I know her products are really popular, really well-made, and don't have beaver anus gland extract used for the peach or the cucumber components as we established earlier.
So, that being said, Nadine, thank you so much for coming on the show and sharing all this stuff with us. I love the work that you're doing. These books are great.
Nadine: Oh, thank you so much. I think we got to know there's a lot of information out there and there's a clear path to some beautiful things that can help us all.
Ben: Yeah, absolutely, absolutely. Well, folks, again you can leave your questions, your comments, your feedback over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/nadine, and until next time, I'm Ben Greenfield along with Nadine Artemis of Living Libations signing out from BenGreenfieldFitness.com. Have an amazing week.
Well, thanks for listening to today's show. You can grab all the shownotes, the resources, pretty much everything that I mentioned over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com, along with plenty of other goodies from me, including the highly helpful “Ben Recommends” page, which is a list of pretty much everything that I've ever recommended for hormone, sleep, digestion, fat loss, performance, and plenty more. Please, also, know that all the links, all the promo codes, that I mentioned during this and every episode, helped to make this podcast happen and to generate income that enables me to keep bringing you this content every single week. When you listen in, be sure to use the links in the shownotes, use the promo codes that I generate, because that helps to float this thing and keep it coming to you each and every week.
I recently read two excellent beauty, wellness, and self-care books—one focused on oral health and holistic dental care, and the other on overall beauty.
The author of both books is Nadine Artemis, who is also my guest on today's podcast.
Her first book that I read, Holistic Dental Care: The Complete Guide to Healthy Teeth and Gums, is a comprehensive guide to natural, do-it-yourself oral care that introduces simple, at-home dental procedures anyone can do. Highlighted with 53 full-color photos and illustrations, this book offers dental self-care strategies and practices that get to the core of the problems in our mouths—preventing issues from taking root and gently restoring dental health. Based on a “whole-body approach” to oral care, Holistic Dental Care addresses the limits of the traditional approach that treats only the symptoms and not the source of body imbalances.
Taking readers on a tour of the ecology of the mouth, dental health expert and author Nadine describes the physiology of the teeth and the sources of bacteria and decay. Revealing the truth about the artificial chemicals in many toothpastes and mouthwashes, Nadine also discusses the harmful effects of mercury fillings and the much safer ceramic filling options that are available. Covering topics that include healthy nutrition, oral care for children, and the benefits of botanical substances and plant extracts for maintaining oral health, Nadine introduces a comprehensive eight-step self-dentistry protocol that offers an effective way to prevent decay, illness, acidic saliva, plaque build-up, gum bleeding, inflammation, and more.
Nadine's second book, Renegade Beauty: Reveal and Revive Your Natural Radiance–Beauty Secrets, Solutions, and Preparations, teaches you how to rethink conventional notions of beauty and wellness, abandon established regimes and commercial products, and embrace your “renegade” beauty. In this essential full-color guide, Nadine introduces you to the concept of “renegade” beauty—a practice of doing less and allowing the elements and the life force of nature to revive the body, skin, and soul so your natural radiance can shine through. Anyone stuck in perpetual loops of new products, facials, and dermatologist appointments will find answers as she illuminates the energizing elements of sun, fresh air, water, the earth, and plants. This book is a comprehensive resource for anyone who wants to simplify their self-care routine, take their health into their own hands, and discover their own radiant beauty.
So who is Nadine, exactly?
She is the creator of Living Libations (use code BEN to save 15%), a luxury line of organic wild-crafted non-GMO serums, elixirs, and essential oils for those seeking the purest of the pure botanical natural health and beauty products on the planet. She is an innovative aromacologist, developing immune-enhancing formulas and medicinal blends for health and wellness.
Her healing creations—along with her concept of renegade beauty—encourage effortlessness, eschew regimes and inspire people to rethink conventional notions of beauty and wellness. Her potent dental serums are used worldwide and provide the purest oral care available. She is a key speaker at health and wellness conferences and a frequent commentator on health and beauty for media outlets. She has received glowing reviews for her work in the Hollywood Reporter, GOOP, Vogue, People, Elle, Yoga Journal, Natural Health, W Magazine, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and National Post.
Her celebrity fans and customers include Shailene Woodley, Renee Zellweger, Julianne Moore, Carrie Anne Moss, Mandy Moore, First Lady of Canada Sophie Trudeau, and many others. Alanis Morissette describes Nadine as “a true sense-visionary”; and Aveda founder, Horst Rechelbacher, calls Nadine “a pure flower of creativity.” And on top of all that, Nadine opened the first full-concept aromatherapy store in North America at just 22 years old.
During this discussion, you'll discover:
-Nadine's personal history in the realm of beauty and symmetry…6:52
- Natural curiosity about nature and independent spirit from a very young age
- Curiosity and experimentation intensified in college
- Discovered Lisa Bonet (Denise on the Cosby Show) on the Donahue show
- Book: Diet for a New America by John Robbins – about the connection between food and the environment
- Led into a deep dive into health, nutrition, etc.; understanding of the grocery store conglomerate
- Some crafty labeling practices in common food and beauty items:
- Natural substances are grown, then isolated, from which synthetic substances are created (ex. menthol from peppermint)
- Pure rose otto oil is $20k per kilo; synthetic rose oil is $20 per kilo
- How it's made, the cost of labor, where the raw materials come from, is a factor in the price
-How your teeth derive nutrients from your gut via a “dentinal flow”…14:25
- Book: Why Raise Ugly Kids by Dr. Hal Huggins
- Dr. Ralph Steinman
- Previous belief (until the 1950s) was that a tooth was a dead appendage in the mouth; cavities occurred due to acids and sugars on the teeth
- Steinman eliminated severe allergies by removing “white food” from his diet (bread, sugar, milk, etc.)
- Technique using fluorescent dye to trace the dentinal flow of lymphatic fluid
- How the fluid system works:
- The teeth draw from the nutrients in the gut via the lymphatic type fluid that flows up to and through the roots of the teeth into the pulp chamber; fluid gets pushed into the pulp chamber, pushed up and out unto the teeth through the odontoblast, where it's like a microbead on the enamel
- This results in a microscopic perspiration in the teeth
- Coalesces with the saliva to form a natural protection for the teeth
- Flushes toxins, brings in nutrients
- Journey starts in the mouth; connects in the gut via the hypothalamus
- We chew and those substrates activate the parotid glands, the largest salivary gland in the mouth, and that releases communications to the hypothalamus
- Stress in the body, mineral imbalance, cell phone use near the mouth, causes this dentinal flow to stagnate
- The flow reverses when the stressors are not addressed; acids build up on the teeth, causing cavities
- Fluoride can be detrimental to the dentinal flow
-Nadine's 8 steps for dental care…24:05
- Saltwater or baking soda solution to brush teeth
- Sets the tone for the mouth
- Introduces alkalinity for the rest of the steps
- Tongue scraping
- Scrape from back to front
- The Dirt Tongue Scraper
- Living Libations Copper Tongue Scraper
- Brushing the gums
- Tooth sensitivity is a gum issue
- Brush from top-down, and from bottom-up
- Dr. Tung's Ionic Toothbrush for the gums
- Blotting toothbrush
- Should be as soft as possible
- Living Libations Dental Serum
- Brushing the teeth
- Electric toothbrush is recommended
- Sonic toothbrush
- Check the gum lines
- Gum rubber-tipped tool
- Put a bit of dental serum on the tip for added benefit
- Do it twice
- One drop of dental serum on the floss prior to flossing
- DrTung's Smart Floss
- Living Libations floss
- An additional rinse with the saltwater solution
- Liquid magnesium
- Oil pulling
- Do for 10-15 minutes
- Extra care steps
- Botanical biotics
- Dental serum
- Blunt-tipped syringe
- Botanical biotics – essential oils are not only aromatics but true genuine distillates, pure plant medicine, and act as quorum sensing inhibitors (QSI)
- Quorum sensing is a way for pathogens to communicate and coordinate their group behavior to regulate gene expression
- Clove has been shown to reduce quorum sensing by up to 70%
- Essential oils can create anti-infective activity that can coexist with flora, while cleaning up the periodontal pathogens; molecules can bust up the biofilm in a way that antibiotics can't; (biofilm prevents the respiration cycle of teeth – teeth also breath; reason why it's not good to use glycerine in toothpaste because it will coat the teeth even after rinsing)
-The effects your teeth have on other organs in your body…48:00
- Key lines and energy meridians in the body (Eastern medicine)
- Hasn't been fully researched
- Anecdotal evidence in Nadine's life
- Thermography images show connection between a root canal and the breast
- BGF podcast with Dominik Nischwitz on holistic dental care
- Flossing resulted in minimized inflammation
-Nadine's thoughts on the efficacy of charcoal toothpaste…52:10
- BGF Podcasts on Vice article: Part 1 and Part 2
- Two ways to gauge the abrasivity of a toothpaste:
- MOH hardness value (1-10 scale)
- Relative dentin abrasivity (RDA)
- Activated charcoal is a 2 on the MOH scale; baking soda is 2.5
- RDA gauges the erosiveness of abrasives in oral care products
- Most leading brands are much higher on the RDA scale than activated charcoal
-Peptides that can be used for oral care…57:00
- Dental cleanings release tons of bacteria into the body
- Cannot donate blood within 48 hrs after a dental cleaning
- Practices 1-3 months before a dentist appointment:
- Thymosin α1
- BPC 157 for receding gums
- Mouth protocol for injection
- Dilute BPC157
- 1 ml NACI
- .25 ml organic peppermint oil along the gum line
- International Peptide Society
-Three questions you need to ask the next time you visit your dentist…1:01:30
- Do you do implants with titanium?
- Titanium is one of the most toxic metals
- Do you do root canals?
- Root canals are pure toxicity to the body
- BGF podcast on root canals
- Do you leave in the periodontal ligament when doing an extraction?
- Akin to leaving the placenta in when giving birth
- Why ozone and lasers are optimal for cleaning the mouth
- Why Vitamin C is used for prep and recovery from an oral procedure
- What X-rays can expose you to less radiation
-The Stop, Seal, Seed concept…1:08:35
- Stop over-cleaning your skin
- Seal the skin with oil
- Seed via quality food, sunshine, probiotics, etc.
-And much more!
Resources from this episode:
- Living Libations (use code BEN to save 15%)
- Holistic Dental Care: The Complete Guide to Healthy Teeth and Gums
- Renegade Beauty: Reveal and Revive Your Natural Radiance–Beauty Secrets, Solutions, and Preparations
- Diet for a New America by John Robbins
- Why Raise Ugly Kids by Dr. Hal Huggins
– BGF podcasts:
- With Dominik Nischwitz on holistic dental care
- The Vice articles: Part 1 and Part 2
- On root canals
– Other resources:
- The Dirt Tongue Scraper
- Living Libations Copper Tongue Scraper
- DrTung's Ionic Toothbrush
- Blotting Toothbrush
- Living Libations Dental Serum
- Sonic Toothbrush
- Gum Rubber-tipped Tool
- DrTung's Smart Floss
- Living Libations Floss
- Liquid Magnesium
- The Dirt Oil Pulling Mouthwash
- Blunt-tipped Syringe
- Activated charcoal toothpaste
- Organic Peppermint Oil
- Vitamin C
- Jojoba Oil
- Living Libations Hemp Cloth
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