Cure Gum Disease Naturally

Calcium’s Critical Role in Curing Gum Disease – Guide Part 5/8

Healing gum disease requires restoring adequate levels of vitamins and minerals in our diet from sources that our body can recognize and metabolize—whole foods. By far calcium is the most important mineral needed to reverse gum disease.

Calcium Symbol

Calcium Stops Gum Disease

Based on the work of the dentists Dr. Harold F. Hawkins and Dr. Melvin Page, we learned that when the loss of calcium exceeds the body’s requirement for this mineral, there could be disintegration and eventual destruction of the alveolar process that supports the teeth.

Calcium Protects Against Alveolar Bone Loss

Dr. Hawkins’s forgotten remedy for gum disease was a high calcium diet, combined with alkalizing foods and a moderation of high phosphorous foods (red meats and grains). Low blood calcium directly correlates with severe periodontal disease. Other literature also shows direct correlations with low calcium intake, imbalanced calcium to phosphorus ratio, and severe periodontal bone loss.1 The less calcium one eats, the more severe the periodontal disease.2 The calcium and phosphorus ratio in the blood is maintained by an adequate calcium intake along with the ability to metabolize calcium, which requires fat-soluble vitamins, a balanced glandular system, trace minerals, and a healthy digestive system.

Dairy Products Help Cure Gum Disease

A more recent study shows an inverse relationship between periodontal disease and dairy consumption.3 The more dairy products people consumed, the lower the prevalence of periodontal disease.4

Pasteurization Damages Milk

Many people have learned from an unpleasant experience that pasteurized milk makes them sick or congested and as a result they avoid it. This is rarely due to the commonly blamed lactose intolerance; rather, it is most often due to pasteurization and grain-fed milk intolerance. Probably pasteurization’s worst offense is that it makes an important portion of the calcium contained in raw milk non-absorbable. Pasteurization also destroys probiotics, which have been shown to be beneficial for periodontal disease.5 Pasteurization was introduced as an attempt to neutralize (kill) pathogens found in dirty milk from filthy and inhumane “distillery dairies” in the mid 1800s.6 It was never intended for clean milk from healthy animals on pasture.

In order to absorb calcium from milk, we need the enzyme phosphatase, which is naturally present in raw milk. High temperature pasteurization typically heats milk to 165 degrees or more, and thereby destroys phosphatase.7 Significant portions of other vitamins are lost in the pasteurization process as well, such as vitamin C. Typically the conventionally produced milk that most people drink contains fecal matter, blood, and pus. Commercial milk must be pasteurized to render it even drinkable. Pasteurization cooks this material. It is not surprising that significant portions of the population are allergic to this toxic soup.

Because pasteurization damages the probiotic content of raw milk, pathogenic organisms associated with disease can easily grow unchecked in pasteurized milk. When the probiotic organisms are destroyed, pasteurized milk lacks its own protective mechanism against harboring toxins that make people sick. In 2007, three people died from drinking pasteurized milk in Massachusetts. Many times when people get sick from milk it is assumed that the milk was not pasteurized properly. Again, as with the diseases tooth decay or gum disease, bacteria are always blamed. Toxic foods, sick animals, and residues of antibiotics and growth hormones are never considered to be the cause of poisoning from pasteurized milk. Even worse, because milk was pasteurized, doctors will automatically eliminate it as a likely source of causing a particular illness. As a result, sickness caused by pasteurized milk is vastly under reported, while sickness claimed to be caused by raw milk is vastly over reported. With clean hygienic milking standards healthy raw milk from grass-fed animals is far safer than pasteurized milk from confined animals in concentrated dairy operations.8

Pasteurized Milk and Gum Disease

While cats naturally thrive on raw milk, cats drinking pasteurized milk over time develop gum disease and arthritis. Cats fed pasteurized milk eventually suffer bone loss in their jaws and lose all their teeth.9

Homogenized cow’s milk renders many nutrients in the milk unusable to the body because the process breaks apart the milk fats’ cellular structure. It does so by forcing milk at high pressure through extremely small holes which rupture the wall of fat cells, preventing the fat from rising to the surface of the milk as it would do naturally. Do not drink homogenized milk. Many commercial ice creams are made with homogenized milk to give it a creamier texture.

Commercial dairy animals are injected with rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone), and they are fed genetically modified grains, which are not a part of their natural diet. Avoid non-organic dairy foods.

Milk in Glass

Raw Grass-fed Milk

Consuming pasteurized commercial milk raises the level of non-absorbable calcium in one’s diet.10 11However, we’ve all heard that milk is a good source of calcium. That would be true of raw milk, which is not pasteurized.

Milk is spoken of reverentially in the bible as pure and sacred nourishment, and ancient societies correlated milk with health, abundance, and fertility. It is a delicious and healthful gift from the animals. High quality raw milk will substantially contribute to the health and well-being of you and your children. Milk is very high in calcium and phosphorus, which we know now we need for strong teeth and strong alveolar bones. When pastured (not to be confused with pasteurizing) cows eat grass in the time of rapid growth after the rains of early summer and autumn, which means there will be moderate amounts of bone hardening activator X / “K2” in the milk.

Before the recent invention of refrigerators, milk was consumed either immediately after milking, known as sweet milk, or it naturally began to sour and was transformed with cultures into cheese and fermented milk like yogurt. Probiotics are vital to our health, support good digestion, and aid in periodontal health.12 Many forms of soured milk are excellent for obtaining beneficial and vitamin-creating bacteria. Having healthy gums is a result of more than just eating well; it is about absorbing the nutrients in food well. An essential aspect of nutrient absorption is having a diet rich in probiotic, live foods. In addition to a wide spectrum of probiotic bacteria, different forms of soured milk including yogurt contain highly absorbable forms of calcium. Soured milk is also low in milk sugar, known as lactose. A more recent study shows that people who consume more fermented dairy products (like yogurt) had less severe periodontal disease than those who did not. 13

People in excellent health consume milk in many different forms such as buttermilk, clabber, cottage cheese, kefir, and yogurt. Several ancient Ayurvedic texts describe using milk, yes, raw, grass-fed milk, as a cure for literally hundreds of ailments. The most particularly healing milk to the body was identified as buttermilk. Since all milk was cultured in those days (the refrigerator was not yet invented) this would of course be non-pasteurized cultured buttermilk. Part of milk’s healing power lies in its nutrient density and the ease with which our body can digest it.

Let’s review some of the life-affirming, mostly cultured, varieties of raw milk:

  • Clabber is a pleasantly soured yogurt-like milk product produced by allowing milk to sit out in a jar at room temperature.
  • Kefir (pronounced keh-FEER) is produced when milk is cultured with kefir “grains,” or organisms. The kefir grains are a symbiotic matrix colony of bacteria and yeast that resemble a piece of cauliflower. Kefir grains can be obtained online, or from friends making kefir at home. At room temperature the kefir grains consume milk sugars and transform raw milk into a potent, nutrient-rich, cultured beverage. It can be drunk plain or in smoothies. Kefir culture seeds our intestines with milk-digesting bacteria and aids in cleansing and detoxification of the body. Regular consumption of kefir will increase your vitality and longevity by filling you up with more than sixty beneficial yeasts and bacteria, not to mention the highly digestible forms of calcium and other minerals found in kefir milk.
  • Whey is the light yellowish liquid that remains when milk solids are removed from cultured milk. You may have seen it on the top (or at the bottom) of your yogurt container. After milk sours, the liquid portion of the milk can be separated from the solids, leaving you with curds and whey. Whey is an ancient health remedy because of its ease of digestion along with its vast probiotic contents. Whey can be obtained from yogurt if you do not have access to raw milk.
  • Buttermilk is the liquid that is left over from the process of churning butter. It has a refreshing sweet and sour taste, and will aid your overall health.

Room temperature milk can be easier to digest than milk fresh out of the refrigerator. Consider warming your milk to room temperature.

Milk Can Be Mislabeled

Some milk laws are backwards these days. Milk laws are controlled at the state level, so the law may be different in your state. Dairy products that are sold in larger chain stores labeled as kefir, buttermilk, cottage cheese, or cream cheese are in fact counterfeit. Because of these laws, real kefir, real buttermilk, and real cream cheese are banned from our stores. Instead, the products you see have a specific strain of culture added to the milk or cream to create these products. The natural, old-fashioned way to make these products is through fermentation without adding enzymes. Store products, besides yogurt, do not benefit from the natural culturing process and are dramatically inferior. Usually the taste is completely different from what the real food, generally not available in stores, actually tastes like. Equally, the health benefits from the store-bought products will not be the same as those made from honest, fresh raw milk.

The problem with store-bought dairy is not just in the culturing process, but also in the quality of the original milk used. Some milk products labeled as organic may not come from cows that are raised completely on their natural diet. Instead of being on grass, they are fed organic grains and other fodder, which is not natural to a cow’s diet. The result of this large scale, profit-driven production is that the grain-fed milk lacks wholesome life-sustaining nutrients. In general people do not do well on grain-fed milk; it is too sweet and nutrient deficient. Unless clearly labeled as grass-fed, you can assume that store-bought milk is completely grain-fed, even the organic varieties. If we see a new product in the store we are interested in, we call the farm to learn what conditions the dairy animal was raised under. Although the ideal of organic milk is that it comes from pasture-fed, free ranging cows, the reality is that many larger dairies selling organic milk in grocery stores do not meet these optimal standards.

Obtaining Raw Milk

Due to laws that assault our personal freedoms, liberty, and the right to choose guaranteed by state and the U.S. Constitutions, raw milk can be difficult to obtain. In many states raw milk is harder to get than hard liquor, cigarettes, guns, marijuana, and prescription drugs that have known dangerous side effects. The facetious term for raw milk in locales where it is illegal to be sold to the public is “moo-shine.” – One easy way to find raw milk in your vicinity. – Get involved with and contact your local Weston A. Price Foundation chapter leader. Many times they can direct you to lesser known cow-share programs and legal direct-from-the-farmer dairy products.

Whole Foods Market® has a very nice artisan cheese section with many raw milk cheeses. You can tell if a cheese is grass-fed typically by how pungent it is. Grain-fed cheese has a bland or “normal” milk flavor. Grass-fed cheese is flavorful, usually pungent, and sometimes contains hints of a grassy flavor. In cities or more affluent areas, you can often find cheese mongers who will have several varieties of grass-fed raw cheeses, many of which are imported from Europe. If you like cheese, do yourself a favor and try some new varieties.

Dairy Sensitivities

Many people are told that they cannot digest dairy foods, or experience negative effects from pasteurized milk. Yet for a majority of people these negative effects do not occur when they drink raw, grass-fed milk. This is because raw, grass-fed milk is a completely different product from pasteurized confinement dairy milk. If raw cow’s milk does not work for you, but you still want to consume dairy, then I highly recommend starting with soured milk in the form of kefir or yogurt. Also do not be afraid to try milk from other animals such as sheep, goat, camel, or mare’s milk. Some milk consumers who cannot tolerate fluid milk find that they have no problems with really good cheese. Over a period of months, consuming real kefir will restore most people’s ability to drink raw milk. If you are unable to tolerate dairy products, then usually it is a sign that your digestive system is not working properly.


Food Sources of Calcium in Milligrams


Traditional Foods Whole Bone Calcium – ½ teaspoon

720 mg

 Hard / Soft cheeses – 2 ounces

 404 mg

 Traditional Foods Bone Marrow Calcium – 1 teaspoon

 400 mg

 Canned sardines with bones – 1 can 3.75 ounces

 351 mg

 Goat milk – 1 cup

 327 mg

 Yogurt, whole milk – 1 cup

 296 mg

 Canned salmon with bones 3.5 ounces

 277 mg

 Whole milk – 1 cup

 276 mg

 Cooked collard greens – 1 cup

 266 mg

 Cooked Tahitian taro root – 1 cup

 204 mg

 Cooked kale – 1 cup

 171 mg

 Cooked beet greens – 1 cup

 164 mg

 Cooked dandelion greens – 1 cup

 147 mg

 Cooked broccoli – 2 cups

 120 mg

 Traditional corn tortillas – 3 at 4.2 ounces


 Cooked scallops – 3.5 ounces

 115 mg

 Cooked white beans – ½ cup

 113 mg

 Herring – 3 ounces

 90 mg

 Sesame seeds – 1 tablespoon

 89 mg

 Heavy cream – ½ cup

 78 mg

 Cottage cheese- ½ cup

 69 mg

 Tahini roasted – 1 tablespoon

 64 mg

 Halibut – 3 ounces

 50 mg

 Cooked pinto beans – ½ cup

 45 mg

 Sweet potato, one medium

 40 mg

 Shrimp – 3 ounces

 33 mg

 Salmon without bones – 3.5 ounces

 28 mg


Calcium Foods

The goal for calcium consumption for a healthy adult is somewhere between 1 – 1 ½ grams of calcium per day. For acute oral conditions many people will temporarily benefit from a higher dose of absorbable calcium, which I estimate to be from 1.6 to 2.2 grams.

Four cups (one quart) of milk provides about one gram of calcium and one gram of phosphorus per day. This is a significant portion of your daily requirements of the minerals you need for healthy teeth and a healthy jawbone. As a note, cream or cream cheese contains the fat portion of the milk, which has very little calcium, but plenty of fat-soluble vitamins needed to absorb the calcium.

References for Calciums Role in Gum Disease

1 Wical, Kenneth E., and Charles C. Swoope. “Studies of Residual Ridge Resorption. Part II. The Relationship of Dietary Calcium and Phosphorus to Residual Ridge Resorption.” The Journal of Prosthetic Dentistry 32.1 (1974): 13-22. Web.
2 Nishida, Mieko, Sara G. Grossi, Robert G. Dunford, Alex W. Ho, Maurizio Trevisan, and Robert J. Genco. “Calcium and the Risk For Periodontal Disease.” Journal of Periodontology 71.7 (2000): 1057-066. Web.
3 Shimazakaki Y et al. “Intake of dairy products and periodontal disease: the Hisayama Study”
Journal of Peridontology. 79.1 (2008) 131-137. Web.
4 Al-Zahrani, Mohammad S. “Increased Intake of Dairy Products Is Related to Lower Periodontitis Prevalence.” Journal of Periodontology 77.2 (2006): 289-94. Web.
5 McAfee, Mark. “The Fifteen Things That Pasteurization Kills.” Wise Traditions Summer (2010): 82. Print.
6 McAfee, Mark. “The Fifteen Things That Pasteurization Kills.” Wise Traditions Summer (2010): 82. Print.
7 Ibid.
8 The Facts about Real Raw Milk. The WestonA. Price Foundation . < >. Web.
9 Pottenger, Francis. “A Fresh Look at Milk.” Selene River Press. N.p., n.d. Web. <>.
11 Huggins, Hal A.. It’s All in Your Head: The Link Between Mercury Amalgams and Illness. 1 ed. New York: Avery Publishing, 1993. Print:155.
12 Mohanty, Rinkee. Nazareth, Nianca. Shirvasta, Neha. “The potential role of probiotics in periodontal health.” RSBO. 9.1.(2012) 85-8. Print.
13 Shimazaki, Yoshihiro, Tomoko Shirota, Kazuhiro Uchida, Koji Yonemoto, Yutaka Kiyohara, Mitsuo Iida, Toshiyuki Saito, and Yoshihisa Yamashita. “Intake of Dairy Products and Periodontal Disease: The Hisayama Study.” Journal of Periodontology 79.1 (2008): 131-37. Web.

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