Mouth Health…It’s about more than just brushing and flossing your teeth. Dental disease is 100% preventable and it starts at home with you.
Your mouth is a window into your body. Your mouth can have an effect on your chewing, swallowing, speech, breathing and so much more. There are warning signs and we’re not paying attention to them.
Together, we can make a difference and help our kids live happy healthy lives if we are aware of and catch things sooner. My teeth not only affected my self-esteem, but it also made me aware of just how much your mouth can change our lives and how it is connected to our whole body health. I didn’t want to smile as a kid, other kids made fun of me. People were always asking what was wrong with me. I just didn’t want to open my mouth because I didn’t want to be made fun of and I don’t want other kids to feel the same way I did growing up.
My guest today is Emily Woodward. She is a registered nurse and nutrition health wellness coach and an international certified colon hydrotherapist!
We both got into this health coaching world kind of along the same lines. Today It’s awesome because I talk about mouth health and pH and mouth biome and she talks about gut health and pH and biome.
One of my favorite health practitioners ever. Her name is Catalina Martone, also known as a healthy cut girl. And that’s kind of where my journey started. I’d read a book and it led me to her and it was all about the gut and how, if you if your digestion is suffering, if you’re not eliminating appropriately, if you don’t have the right balance of good microbes to bad by microbes, you’re going to have some degree of dysbiosis you’re not going to absorb the minerals and nutrients. From your food as well, and that’s going to lead to downstream problems, whether that’s bone health problems, whether that’s skin problems, whether that’s long term problems like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, it’s all connected to the gut in my health and wellness journey, because we’re all on a journey, aren’t we? I recently got my gut microbes mapped. And I discovered that I do have some oral bacteria that are not supposed to be in my colon that is there.
So I’m doing a whole bunch of work on my, my oral health as well. And, you know, a lot of that comes back to the basics. I mean, certainly brushing twice a day brushing for my two minutes. I do a mouthwash I floss every day and just try to keep those healthy habits going. Because the little things add up.
Emily’s Dad Is Brad Boor who I recently interviewed about his leukemia diagnosis, was having bleeding gums and that was one of the signs that something was off for him. Well, that was pretty, powerful. So yes, my dad actually got sick with acute myeloid leukemia in June of 2018. And my dad is like one of the healthiest people ever. He is always moving and doing and he eats really healthy. He really looks 20 years younger than he is. He’s just a picture of how he has very few medical problems. Very, very healthy guy, and he always has a lot of energy. He had two symptoms leading up to his diagnosis. One was fatigue, and the other was bleeding gums. And that’s it basically and it was so crazy. I always joke that I’m kind of psychic, but I just kept having dreams that like he wasn’t okay. And I kept having this horrible gut feeling that something was wrong. Because my dad is not a tired guy and he called me we know, for being a long-distance daughter. We talk a lot like three or four times a week.
And I remember talking to him and it was May it’s summertime in Illinois, you know, the weather’s getting nice and he’s a guy that loves the sun. And loves the pool and all the things and he was like, you know, I just don’t feel like opening the pool or just too tired. I don’t feel like moaning, I’m like that is so not my dad. And then one morning he woke up because he woke up with a little like a circle of blood around his mouth and saw that his gums were bleeding. And then he ended up going to get some lab work done in the lab showing that his white count, his platelets, his new love, everything were off the charts crazy bad. And it was a day later, he got diagnosed with AML, very aggressive AML actually, and he only had like two weeks of symptoms. So thank goodness, he paid attention and his body gave him a warning because I don’t know where we’d be if he didn’t listen to that. So, so and that that’s where we can segue into the warning signs and the warning symptoms like something’s in your mouth so deep in your gut, we do to help like, what are the warning signs, what should we look for?
Let’s talk about prevention and food?
Absolutely. I am a huge, huge believer that, um, I mean the food is medicine? I do think that we’ve sort of gotten away from that sort of thinking over the last, I don’t even know how many years but decades, several decades, where you know, food has become really convenient and it’s really easy and it’s very processed and we don’t look at food with these healing capabilities that they do have. So I think if we were to change the lens and look at our food as nourishment as medicine, and start there if we’re meant to enjoy food, we are meant to eat an array of beautiful fruits and vegetables and colors and grains and Whole Foods and beautiful food is fun.
I am the first person to admit I am such a food snob, I love food. I spend a lot of time in my kitchen. And it’s always one of the things that I try to instill in my clients is just learn to have fun with food. Like if you look at food as this magical event, and it’s like oh my gosh, this beautiful salad. Not only is it pretty, but it’s going to nourish me. And this is going to give me the minerals and the nutrients that I need for my body to do its job. And I do think that we’ve gotten away from looking at our bodies as allies, we’ve sort of adopted this way of thinking where we’re like, oh my gosh, if my body’s not working, I’m broken, something’s wrong, or I need to outsource what I know, in my own body to someone else. And that’s really where my work I think really makes a lasting impact because I like to teach people It starts with you. Health does not begin at your doctor’s office, it begins in your kitchen, every single day. It begins in those healthy habits you establish every day. So to kind of go back to your original question, if we look at food as medicine and we enjoy healthy foods, that’s number one. And our food should make us feel good. So I’m a huge proponent. I am a huge teacher of listening to your body like you’re like it’s gonna sound a little juvenile, I guess, but like how does the food feel in your tummy?
Do you feel cozy?
Do you feel warm?
Do you feel tight and distended?
Are you gassy?
Do you have bubbles and my burping a lot?
Do you feel sluggish and tired?
Do you have headaches?
Because these are all signs that the body is trying to tell you. So if you’re somebody who bloats every time you eat pasta, maybe you have to investigate. Maybe you have some gluten problems. Maybe you’re somebody who every time you eat eggs, you break out in a rash, maybe there’s food intolerance. So the body is constantly trying to teach you and trying to tell you things.
The gut is our second brain, you know, just in my study it is unbelievable to find out that literally, there’s one cell layer separating what’s in your, like your intestines in your stomach, your GI tract, in your immune system. So much of our health comes from the gut. And if we’re not nourishing appropriately, if we’re not establishing daily healthy habits, it makes sense to me why our immune systems are suffering and why we’re sicker and why we are seeing illness in younger generations and why we’re seeing these crazy things that we never used to see before. It’s really interesting and sad and scary, but also I think, I think it’s really empowering because when people I think people just need to realize, like, we can make changes happen. I mean, no change happens overnight, at all, but when we do sustainable, small things day in and day out, and maybe not every day, but like, I don’t know, six out of seven days. I think that that really adds up in the long run.
The gut, the gut-brain, and the mouth are so amazing. The gut microbes, literally, we’re 10% human, we have more bacteria on us and in us dictating our thoughts, our hunger patterns, our how we carry weight. Anything you can imagine 10% of us compared to the other 90% only 10% is actual human cells. How amazing is that? Yes, we are one with these microbes on how much our body is water and we need water and that’s why we’re sicker because we’re eating stuff that actually causes inflammation in our body.
The inflammation is at work in our bodies; it’s all happening at a cellular level, all day every day where our bodies are just not equipped to deal with that kind of inflammation. And that’s where we see the the the chronic diseases that we see in this country in this world, the heart disease and our diabetes and our autoimmune is such a big thing now and but it’s so powerful, how just little things like drink half your weight in water every single day is is magic for your body.
You know they say that we have trillions and trillions of cells, but this space in between your cells, your interstitial fluid, that’s the water we in the body, it’s like a sponge we need to wring it out and then expand and like, we’re not fluid I’m sorry, we’re not static creatures. We are fluid. We are constantly changing and moving and growing and stretching and the body alongside that magic that that is this existence like we want. The body wants that. And so even something like drinking half your weight in ounces every day in water that is going to provide you with unbelievable benefits. Nonetheless, even your mouth too because the water has a neutral pH of seven. So if you can control the pH in your mouth, you can control dental disease. Cavities are preventable….Water is a simple thing you can do to balance the pH in your mouth can also help prevent cavities chewing gum like we were talking about before we got on here with the protective ingredient xylitol. Xylitol comes from the middle of the corn cob. But it helps kill those streptococcus mutans that cause cavities. So, chewing the actual act of chewing the gum helps just your jaws above unless you have TMJ, you don’t want to watch a lot of gum, but all that stuff, just it helps with the gut biome and you’re right, the bacteria is just and the bacteria that get into your mouth and when you brush and you get that bleeding, they then accumulate and may contribute to heart disease and all of that stuff.
What is your recommendation because I know that you do a lot of plant growing of your own food and things like that. What would you recommend for prevention in food and healing? Right?
Absolutely, one of my favorite things at home cooking, getting comfortable in the kitchen. I love knowing where my food comes from. I’m also a big huge proponent of like, community-supported agriculture. So my husband and I every week we try to go to the farmers market. I love knowing where my food is coming from. It’s picked pretty close, you know within like 24-48 hours so it’s got a lot of nutrition in it. Not like when you go to a commercial supermarket, maybe that fruit had to travel from Mexico and you’re in Illinois, you know, it might make a long way for it to travel so we lose a lot of nutrients. And I know that’s not realistic for everybody to go to a farmers market all year round. I’m very lucky here in California and you have a lot of fruit all year round. Getting close to the source of your food prep, preparing it in a way where it’s home-cooked and really yummy, healthy, healthy fats. I’m a huge proponent of fats and balancing flavor, using spices getting excited about creating
I love eating the rainbow. I always like to tell people like if you look at your plate, try to fill it with as many colors and fruits and veggies as you can. And then you know, definitely if you’re an animal protein eater, then enjoy some animal protein. Just don’t make it the main event. The main event is your veggies, your lagoons, your plants, you know the things that can grow in the ground. Those should make up the bulk of your food but enjoy your chicken, your turkey, your meat, whatever it is that feels good to you. Because there is no one size fits all diet. I’m using air quotes and I say diet but really what I mean to say is there’s no one size fits all. I think it’s like take my husband and I thrive on a vegetarian diet. I do well on a vegetarian diet, but then, like once or twice a week. My body’s like oh my god I need like turkey or I need like a piece of salmon and it just I feel stronger so I really love when people tune into that intuition.
Just listening to your body, listening to your intuition because we all thrive in different ways. I do like to tell people if you can, try not to drink a lot of fluids during your meals because that can dilute the stomach acid in the stomach acid is your first line of defense of the microbes that are present on the food or you know, there’s microbes everywhere but the bath that the hydrochloric acid has the pH of battery acid, its job is to kill microbes. We drink a bunch of water. It dilutes the enzymes, also I like to tell people to try to drink room temperature water if you’re going to drink during your meals because otherwise, cold water can take away from the digestive fire. that you need and you are not just what you eat you are what you eat and digest and absorb.
I always like to remind people that natural digestion starts in your mouth with your saliva and the enzymes in your saliva and it doesn’t help you drink with meals. Saliva has a big part digestion in your body, it’s all connected.
We’re not listening to our mouth and a lot of times people are like, I do not think I have a cavity I am not feeling any pain. I say you don’t feel pain in your mouth until it is a late stage of disease. By the time you feel pain in your mouth, you are usually going to need to make a design like a root canal, or are you going to pull this tooth? Being consistent with your oral health care can prevent problems like these from happening. I have to tell you, it’s kind of like the equivalent of well, like, I have a patient who let’s say they can’t feel their hypertension. Well, okay, that’s the warning sign. And then when you have a stroke because your blood pressure is to 180 over 102 Literally I see that pretty regularly. It’s like, okay, now we have a brain injury because we’ve had a stroke because we weren’t listening to the body telling us through the hypertension every time you go to the doctor every time you stand up and you have that kind of weird feeling, it’s like, that’s your body and we’ve Totally come into this mindset of we like to it’s like the check engine light on our body goes off, whether that’s through a missed period or acne or something constipated for a few days or I have no energy. What or my gums are bleeding. It’s like we put a bandaid on the problem and we expect it to Wait, that’s unfortunately the western medicine approach. There’s a pill for every ill.
Western medicine you wait to take care of the problem when it’s an obvious painful issue. Instead, If I were to go to a functional medicine doctor or a holistic practitioner or somebody who looks at the root cause, where we get to address everything else. It’s like the body’s natural state is one of Balance. It has never not been this It will always be this way. The body will always say Seek to achieve that homeostasis and that balance. So, let’s say for example the blood has a very specific pH normally 7.35 to 7.4 That’s where we want it. So let’s say you have had some really bad habits Let’s say you drink a lot of alcohol and you’re eating a lot of sugar and a lot of cards and everything’s out of balance. The blood is like I’m a little twist Today so I’m going to take some mineral From maybe your teeth, maybe your bones, maybe some of your other organs in order to balance That pH of the blood because if I don’t do that Something bad is going to happen. The wisdom of the body is so Brilliant. So it’s like coming back to balance and so to kind of, you know, bring this back full circle to what we’re talking about. It’s like the body wants balance. I don’t think it’s when I think about how I teach my clients and even as I approach every single day of my own life, you know how we always make time for what matters To us, I try to tell people like well you know if it matters You’ll make time for it. So flossing every night is now part of my life. I mean, I’m not gonna lie, I’m 33 years old. I’m not the most consistent placer but Since finding out that I have some more bacteria that need some help. I am I every day every single night before bedtime, I floss my teeth. So Guess what I have to do I have to turn my show off or put my book away five minutes. Extra before bed so that I have time to floss my teeth. It sounds like a little thing. And it is a little thing in five minutes every single night isn’t a huge deal. But this is gonna make a big difference for me down the road.
I know it. Right, and you’re trying to get your body in balance so you can have a baby I had five doctors tell me I would never have a child and then I worked with an integrated medicine doctor and three months in I was able to get her full term after eight miscarriages which is so powerful cuz Western medicine and you know integrative medicine They think completely different and they look at the body and not just progesterone give you some shots. He actually balanced my whole system and I didn’t even realize it was out of balance because they were subtle signs we are told are normal.
Exactly, Again, it’s like the wisdom of the body is It knows and I think a lot of us, I mean, especially me in my journey. I’ve outsourced a lot of my power to physicians. I was diagnosed with the polycystic ovarian syndrome in 2014. And I was given two options: Metformin, or the birth control pill and something deep within me was like, You know what, that doesn’t really feel right. So I’m going to take this and learn from it, and I did and then everything changed for me. I found practitioners I learned about the power of food and mineral balance and stress management. And now I’m helping Coach because of all of those things that led to my journey and my management body. It’s unbelievable and We definitely outsource that power and I want people to realize it is possible everything is possible with your body healing coming back to balance.
I think a lot of people have also forgotten what it feels like or maybe We don’t even know what it feels like to be healthy, vibrant, thriving. We don’t know what it feels like to feel good or a woman who’s got Period problems like she just said. Like oh my gosh, I’m just having horrible PMS every month. It’s just me The genetic portrayal that’s my legacy of being a woman. No, that’s not normal. So let’s go inwardly. Listen, the body will always tell you what it needs and maybe that’s through bleeding gums. Maybe that’s through gingivitis. Maybe that’s through a cavity. Regardless, we need to be listening to our bodies. They will never lie to us. And you know what, what’s interesting is The body will eventually demand you tell You to tell the truth and what I mean to say about is like um you know if I just ignore something and I Put the little band-aid over the check engine light Eventually, something big and bad and ugly is gonna rear its head eventually. I don’t know Listen now. So, going in Word. It’s so powerful. And that’s like candies like you said. Like a lot of people just feel like they have soft teeth and like why just have soft teeth. It runs in my family. Well, teeth are the hardest substance in your body. So you don’t just have soft teeth that you inherited from your family you may have the habit you were taught. You have the same bacteria that are familial or that’s coming from your gut or you have the pH or you have gastric reflux and that’s what’s creating your soft teeth. It is the acid that is the cause of your “soft teeth”, So dental disease is definitely a sign. None of it’s normal. It’s all reversible. Just a matter of you know better you do better and you can do something about it And everything goes back to the root cause like you so Powerful, so powerful.
I think we’re coming back home to ourselves in the way that we’re learning more about our bodies. We’re learning more about ourselves. We’re learning what it feels like to feel good. We’re in a place where we realized the importance of feeling our best and for me, that’s really the beginning and the end of all of it. It’s like you know my business is called Abundantly Well With Emily because of Word abundance. I was like, abundance is everything. It’s about Love. It’s abundant joy. It’s abundant health. It’s abundant. Fun. It’s abundant. Like silliness like everything in my life. I want more. It’s like of course I’m abundant in that. Then all of this magic
I do a lot of videos and I talk a lot about the power of food and natural living. My focus again is gut health hormone balance. Prevention and Eating eating healthy, beautiful diet and so I’m taking clients I work one on one with clients. In my six weeks, three months or six months program, and I am in the process of designing a course on helping your gut microbes read diversify. And so that will be available later this year.
Find Emily at https://www.emilyannewoodward.com/