How does the Keto Diet Affect My Oral Health?

Keto Diet

Cutting down carbs may help you lose weight on the Ketogenic or Keto diet; however, you may also experience bad breath — a signiture of the Keto diet. First, let’s talk about the specifics of the Ketogenic diet.

What is the keto diet?

Like other low-carb diets, the Keto diet focuses on reducing carbs and increasing fats to put your body in a state of Ketosis. Once in this state, your body stops burning glucose and begins burning your body’s natural fat storage, therefore, causing you to lose weight rapidly. Simply, that’s how the Keto diet works. There are a number of scientifically proven benefits that occur during Ketosis such as decreasing heart disease and increasing insulin sensitivity in patients with Type 2 diabetes. However, there are also a few negative side effects including bad breath in the first few weeks of the diet.

Keto Diet

Is Ketosis bad for my Oral Health?

Of course, anything in excess can be harmful, but if done properly, the Keto diet can improve your oral health. By reducing the number of carbohydrates that you eat, you are reducing the number of sugars that sit on your teeth. Over time, fewer sugars sitting on your teeth can lead to less decay and better oral health. Another advantage to eating fewer carbs is less inflammation. A major oral health disease is periodontal disease, which can inflame your gums causing temporary or permanent damage. Theoretically, a decrease in carbs can also lead to a decrease in periodontal symptoms.

Why does the Keto diet cause bad breath?

After a few days on the keto diet, you may notice a change in the freshness of your breath. Don’t worry, this is normal and it usually disappears in a few weeks. But, why does this happen? As your body shifts from using glucose to fats as its main source of energy, the body begins producing ketones. A ketone is an organic compound and the simplest form of acetone. When the acetone is released through your lungs and urine, you may develop a sweet, fruity smell. This can lead to ‘keto breath’ which can smell bad.

How can I improve my oral health on the Keto diet?

Bad breath can decrease your confidence and make you feel uncomfortable in social situations. There are a few ways that Dr. Wolniak at Prairie Feilds Dentistry in Overland Park, Kansas can help you freshen your breath. These are simple tips that you can easily implement into your day. First, practice a good oral routine by brushing twice a day for two minutes each time and flossing once per day. Next, drink lots of water to stay hydrated during the day. You can also chew sugar-free gum to freshen your breath during the day. Lastly, eating complex carbs such as leafy greens and drinking herbs in water and tea such as cinnamon can improve your breath.

The Keto diet has helped many people lose weight; however, there are a few negative side effects including bad breath. For more information on how to maintain your oral health or to plan your next visit with Dr. Wolniak in Prairie Feilds Dentistry at Overland Park, Kansas, call (913)-871-5360, today!