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Oral Health and Nutrition


Proper nutrition means eating a well-balanced diet so that your body can get the nutrients needed for good health and wellness. ... If you're caring for children, a balanced diet along with good oral hygiene habits will help them develop strong, decay-resistant teeth.

 Colonnade Dental Nutrition Program

My quest for the benefits of better nutrition began when I started playing tennis again at the age of 56. I was over weight, out of shape, had trouble running, had poor reaction times, and my knees really hurt afterwards (Like my parents, I have arthritis).  I started thinking about my diet, or more correctly, how BAD my diet was.  I consciously did all the things I knew to do - eat fewer fatty foods, more vegetables, avoid carbohydrates like bread and candy.  But the real eye opener was when I began taking a supplement for joint pain.  I didn’t believe it would help and fortunately, I was wrong.  After a few months, my knees were clearly better and playing was easier.  Now, after researching many of the supplements available for better overall health, I’ve narrowed my personal choices to just a few.

So, the nutrition program at Colonnade Dental is based on what I have found to be effective for me personally, and is limited to supplements that have solid research behind them.  I’ve added a few bits of information about today’s world in general (water quality, etc). 

Hundreds, if not thousands, of observational studies (where investigators look for associations without giving participants supplements to take) have linked diets rich in antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables to a lower risk for diseases like cancer, heart disease, stroke, cataracts, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, and arthritis.  So,  scientists remain certain of the many potential benefits of dietary antioxidants.



Free Radicals

Each day we are exposed to free radicals - unstable molecules that steal or "scavenge" electrons from other molecules.  Exposure to free radical activity is a natural part of life, but in today's world it's possible to become overexposed and experience greater consequences of free radical damage.  Environmental pollution, unbalanced diets, preservatives and additives in food, and physical and mental stress introduce free radicals to your body.  When left unchecked, free radical damage to your cells accumulates and can lead to serious health concerns later in life.  In fact, free radical damage can cause premature aging and is a large factor in the deterioration of health over time.

Antioxidants Block Free Radicals

Antioxidants are abundant in fruits and vegetables.  They are often responsible for the bright colors we see in produce, including reds, purples, yellows and oranges. A healthy diet is imperative to delivering antioxidants to our tissues, however the eating habits of many people do not allow for adequate intake of antioxidants.  Research suggests additional sources of antioxidants may provide added protection against free radical exposure.

The Essential Glutathione              

Oxidative stress has been associated with more than 74 major diseases and disorders, and defending your cells against oxidative stress is a critical function of antioxidants.  One antioxidant does this job better than all the others—glutathione.  It is produced naturally in the body if the required building blocks are available, and it strengthens the immune system, detoxifies the body, fights intracellular inflammation, and neutralizes numerous types of free radicals.  By supporting the production of glutathione, you can help your body defend itself. 



The ultimate in our anti-aging strategy is to have optimal lifestyle, antioxidant levels and gene expression. By improving each of these areas, you can dramatically reduce the effects of aging within your body.

    - Lifestyle - good diet, BMI under 25, no smoking, limited sun exposure, physical exercise

    - Antioxidants - monitor your BioPhotonic Scanner score, eat nine to twelve servings of fruits and vegetables each day, and supplement with Juice Plus, LifePak Nano, Marine Omega, g3 and Jungamals.

    - Implement Vitality and ageLOC skin technologies

Taking advantage of all three anti-aging strategies allows us to live healthier lives.

The Next Frontier - Gene Expression

Science tells us that our genes express differently as we get older.  Our skin cells produce less collagen and elastin.  Our brain, heart and muscle cells produce fewer mitochondria which are the cellular energy producers.  This is also why our antioxidant protection is so important.  But recent studies tell us that it is now possible to “reset” our genetic expression to more youthful levels.  And this expression can be measured by DNA microarray heat maps.

AgeLOC Vitality - Reset, Revive, Renew

As we age, our bodies’ ability to effectively generate and utilize energy can decline, robbing us of youthful vitality. ageLOC® Vitality improves the three dimensions of vitality—physical vigor, mental acuity, and sexual health—by promoting healthy YGC (youth gene cluster) activity associated with youthful vitality.  Through targeting the sources of age-related vitality loss, AgeLOC Vitality helps you feel more like you did when you were young.


Things I recommend - and do myself

Take a supplement that will improve your antioxidant levels!  

      1.   Juice Plus is a twice a day pair of capsules - one for vegetables and one for fruits.

      Or  The Nu Skin product line.  These include LifePak Nano, G3 Juice, and other proven products.

      3.   I take a Coenzyme Q10 supplement several times a week

      4.   I take a glutathione supplement called MaxOne™ every day.  This supplement helps your
           body produce more glutathione naturally.

Take supplements that will improve your joints!

     1.   Take Marine Omega daily for Omega-3.  I prefer Krill oil.  These are small and have a high concentration.

      2.   I take Aleve (Naproxen Sodium).  It is a Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug (NSAID), and lasts a long time.

Good lifestyle choices

      1.   Exercise daily - you’ll feel better!

      2.   8 hours of sleep every night - you’ll really feel better!

      3.   Minimize sugar, high calorie foods, dairy/beef products.

Why take a fruit/vegetables supplement?

One of my mentors in nutrition made a good point.  He told me that we have identified dozens of nutrients, minerals, and other items within foods that are essential to our good health.  Typical supplements like Centrum® could have 30-40 ingredients that have been identified so far.  However, an apple has more than 8,000 separate components.  How many of those are beneficial to us, and how many are needed to take full advantage of the full apple?  We have no idea! 

Supplements like Juice Plus and LifePak Nano preserve the full spectrum of components so they are available for our benefit.

ageLOC Vitality

As we age, our bodies’ ability to effectively generate and utilize energy can decline, robbing us of youthful vitality. ageLOC Vitality improves the three dimensions of vitality—physical vigor, mental acuity, and sexual health - by promoting healthy YGC activity associated with youthful vitality.  Through  targeting the sources of age-related vitality loss, ageLOC Vitality helps you feel more like you did when you were young.


Juice Plus+®

Juice Plus+® delivers key antioxidants and other phytonutrients.
Juice Plus+® reduces oxidative stress.
Juice Plus+® reduces biomarkers of systemic inflammation.
Juice Plus+® helps support a healthy immune system.
Juice Plus+® helps protect DNA.
Juice Plus+® supports cardiovascular wellness.
Juice Plus+® supports healthy skin.
Juice Plus+® supports healthy gums.


Good Carbs / Bad Carbs

Simple carbohydrates are mainly simple sugars, and they raise blood sugar much faster and usually higher than complex carbs.

An example of a simple sugar is the sugar in your sugar bowl.  Things like candy, syrups, and soda pop are simple carbs.  Fruit and milk are also considered simple carbs, even though they contain vitamins, fiber, and important nutrients that your body needs.

Complex carbs are basically starches that contain fiber.  Complex carbs are digested more slowly than simple carbs, so blood sugars don't rise as high or as fast.

Choose the best sources of carbohydrates—whole grains (the less processed, the better), vegetables, fruits and beans—since they promote good health by delivering vitamins, minerals, fiber, and a host of important phytonutrients.  Skip the easily digested refined carbohydrates from refined grains—white bread, white rice, and the like— as well as pastries, sugared sodas, and other highly processed foods, since these may contribute to weight gain, interfere with weight loss, and promote diabetes and heart disease.

Try these five quick tips for adding good carbs to your diet:

   1. Start the day with whole grains. Try a hot cereal, like steel cut oats, or a cold cereal that lists a whole grain first on the ingredient list and is low in sugar. 

   2. Use whole grain breads for lunch or snacks.  Look for bread that lists as the first ingredient whole wheat, whole rye, or some other whole grain —and even better, one that is made with only whole grains, such as 100 percent whole wheat bread. 

   3. Say NO to potatoes.  Instead, try brown rice, bulgur, wheat berries, whole wheat pasta, or another whole grain with your dinner. 

   4. Choose whole fruit instead of juice.  An orange has 2x as much fiber and 1/2 the sugar as a 12-ounce glass of orange juice. 

   5. Bring on the beans. Beans are an excellent source of slowly digested carbohydrates as well as a great source of protein.



Soft Drinks are Bad News

The average can of sugar-sweetened soda or fruit punch provides about 150 calories, almost all of them from sugar, usually high-fructose corn syrup.  That's the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of table sugar (sucrose). If you were to drink just one can of a sugar-sweetened soft drink every day, and not cut back on calories elsewhere, you could gain up to 15 pounds in a year.

Water?  Really?  I have to worry about that too?

I recommend using distilled water whenever possible.  Why?  What’s wrong with tap water or filtered water?

We learned years ago that chlorine will kill all of the living things in natural water (where our drinking water comes from).  Then, the biological components begin to break down producing methane.  Methane combines with chlorine to produce trihalomethanes - many are known carcinogens.

Lifestyle Choices - The Basics NEVER CHANGE!

Diet - Your diet is one of the easiest, yet hardest factors to control.  Always remember the food pyramid taught in elementary school.  It still rings true today.

Mass Index (BMI) - A general rule of thumb is to maintain a BMI under 25.

Sun ExposureUse sun block on exposed skin when outdoors and try and schedule outdoor activities to off-peak sun hours like the early morning or late afternoon.

Physical Exercise - Regularly exercise is a basic part of good health.  If you don’t exercise now, consider taking a walk during lunch to ease your way into getting started with an exercise regimen.

Smoking and Other Environmental Toxins - Tobacco smoke is just one of the sources of free radicals to avoid.  High levels of oxidative stress, pollution and toxins are common sources of free radicals.  Consider quitting smoking and reducing your exposure to free radicals. 

Mark Stephenson, DDS specializes in the following services:

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8511 Colonnade Center Dr. Suite #160
Raleigh, NC 27615
919-241-5161  (Phone) 919.457.1411 (Fax)