2018 TODS Meeting Thursday-Saturday,
October 18-20

Delta Grand Okanagan Resort
Kelowna, British Columbia

Featured Speaker – Ms. Liz Pearson, RD

Eating For Optimal Dental Health

Saturday October 21, 2017   8:30am – 12:30pm   Okanagan Room

Ms. Liz Pearson, RD

CDHBC QAP Competency – A1, A2, D4, D6

Why dental health, with a focus on preventive dentistry, is so important (4th most expensive disease to treat worldwide, dental caries affects most adults and 60–90% of school children, periodontitis is a major cause of tooth loss in adults globally, poor oral health increases the risk of several preventable diseases). How poor dental caries impacts nutritional intake, including the ability to chew, enjoy eating, and the avoidance of nutritious foods, including fruits, vegetables and whole grains.


  • An update on the science of fluoride – how it protects teeth, as well as an overview of possible risks (fluorosis) and controversies (cognitive impairment, hypothyroidism, etc.)
  • The impact of water fluoridation on dental caries (Review of 155 studies, Cochrane Database, June 2015)
  • Updated guidelines for optimal fluoride concentration in drinking water (0.7 mg/L)
  • How both systemic fluoride and topical fluoride benefit dental health


  • How bacteria in the mouth use sugar and other fermentable carbohydrates to produce acids that cause tooth decay
  • Which sugars and starches are fermentable and promote tooth decay (why sucrose is considered the most cariogenic)
  • Intake of “added sugars” by adults and children – recommended limit based on the latest guidelines by the World Health Organization
  • Sugar content of various foods and beverages, including unexpected sources
  • How much sugar do most people eat and is it addictive?
  • Reading food labels to determine sugar content
  • How the food industry, including the sugar industry, encourage the consumption of sugar
  • How frequency of food intake impacts tooth decay
  • How the sequence and combination of foods consumed impact tooth decay
  • How the form and physical consistency of a food impact tooth decay
  • Which starches are the most “highly retentive” in the mouth
  • Which food and drink choices are most cariogenic
  • The impact of sugar-sweetened beverages on dental health
  • How alcohol impacts dental health and the risk of periodontal disease


  • An update on dental erosion and why it has increased so significantly
  • A comparison of the dental erosion potential of various drinks (fruit juice, fruit drinks, fruit smoothies, regular soft drinks, diet soft drinks, sports drinks, energy drinks)
  • A review of the ingredients found in beverages or candies that can cause erosion (phosphoric acid, sodium citrate, citric acid and tartrates)
  • Recommended practices to reduce tooth erosion (drinking with a straw, rinsing mouth with water, not brushing immediately after eating an acidic food or drink, etc.)
  • How erosive beverages impact restorative dental materials, such as compomer and giomer
  • How weight loss products, juice cleanses, and detox diets can impair dental health
  • Guidelines for diagnosing dental erosion (questionnaire, tactful questioning, appearance of lesions, etc.)


  • What food and drink choices are most protective for dental health
  • The role of calcium and milk products in dental health
  • Why sugars in fresh, whole fruit are less cariogenic
  • How a high fibre diet promotes dental health
  • Snacks that are good for dental health, including nuts and popcorn
  • The role of Vitamin D in dental health
  • The anti-inflammatory impact of fish oil on periodontal disease
  • How various plant compounds, essential oils, herbs and spices, and teas (green and black tea) promote dental health
  • An update on oil pulling and tooth decay
  • How chewing gum promotes dental health
  • Probiotics and dental health (how they work, what to look for, and limitations)
  • The benefits and risks of sugar substitutes (stevia, aspartame, sucralose) and sugar alcohols (xylitol)


  • How hormonal changes and nutrient needs of pregnancy impact dental health
  • How dental health impacts pregnancy outcomes
  • Update on breast feeding and dental caries
  • Guidelines for the prevention of Early Childhood Caries (bottle feeding, sippy cups, fruit juice)
  • Teens, Caries Risks and Preventive Behaviours (parental, peer, and environmental influences)
  • Sports Nutrition & Dental Health – do the guidelines conflict?
  • Dental Health of Seniors (tooth loss, dentures, xerostomia)


  • Why dental health professionals should collaborate with other health professionals, such as dietitians and doctors
  • The link between dental health and obesity, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, dementia, kidney disease, and immunity
  • Cancer treatment and dental health
  • How mental health, including depression impact dental health
  • How eating disorders, especially bulimia, impact dental health (what to look for, what to say, and how to treat)


Liz Pearson is a Registered Dietitian with a passion for peanut butter sandwiches and an undying love for chocolate. She presents regularly to corporations, associations, and health professionals across North America about eating for optimal health, happiness, and disease prevention.  Liz was the “Ask the Expert” nutrition columnist for Chatelaine magazine for many years and appears regularly on radio and television.  She’s the author of four books, including two award-winning, national bestsellers.  Her latest book is called “Broccoli, Love & Dark Chocolate.”  Liz believes that food, love, and life should be delicious!

2018 TODS Meeting Thursday-Saturday,
October 18-20

Delta Grand Okanagan Resort
Kelowna, British Columbia

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