Keto Diet and Oral Health

December 15, 2021 0

Unless the pandemic era has kept you under wraps, the Keto diet has been a rage ever since it first came into existence.  The Keto diet is high fat and a very low carb diet. People who go on a Keto diet need to consume low-carb vegetables, fruits, nuts, cheese, fish, and meat. And the one thing they simply cannot consume is sugar. Now you may think that consuming less sugar in your diet would be great for your oral health. After all, when you eat less sugar, you are reducing the number of bacteria in your mouth and teeth and this will obviously be better for your gums and teeth.

However, experts at Smilebest dental Houston believe that even though a lot of people are fascinated with the idea of maintaining better oral health while on a Keto diet, they may not be very thrilled about Keto breathing.

Keto breath typically has a fruity or an acetone smell, until it gets accompanied by the common bacteria present in your mouth, then it gets worse. When combined with bacteria, it turns into an unpleasant smell generally known as “dragon breath.” And of course, your mouth and your teeth will have bacteria which means that being on a Keto diet will cause this unpleasant smell in your mouth. Even though this funky breath could be a sign that your diet is working, you would not want to walk around with a pungent breath even though you may be losing weight.

oral health

Causes of Keto Breath

Keto breath is generally a common temporary side effect when your body doesn’t use ketones produced in your liver. Your body starts to adapt to these levels of ketones once it uses them to fuel your brain and the muscles. These elevated levels in the meantime cause your mouth to acquire Keto breath. When you get Keto-adapted, all bad breath in your mouth should subside on its own. The good news shared by the best dental offices in Houston is that it generally lasts from a week to a month and you may not need to deal with bad Keto breath for a long time.

How to Prevent Keto Breath

Oral health and Keto diet can be an excellent mix since when it comes to preventing Keto breath, you are essentially adopting good oral health care habits that everyone needs to adopt. Here are some tips suggested by the best dentist in Houston TX to help you in preventing pungent Keto breath.

Drink a lot of water.

Dental clinics of Texas suggest that when your body starts to quit producing saliva in your mouth, or simply put when you stop eating or start the Keto diet, you should drink a lot of water. Basically, the beginning of every diet is the same, you lose your appetite and start eating less. The less food you consume, the less saliva is formed and the drier your mouth would be. Hence it becomes necessary to drink a lot of water in order to prevent any bacteria from collecting in your mouth. By staying hydrated, you are opening yourself up to more energy and you will need this energy at the beginning of any new diet.

Maintain a good oral health routine.

Even though you might still experience some Keto breath every time you brush, if your mouth is not producing a lot of salivae, you should ideally brush after each meal. Also, make sure that you use a string of floss and an alcohol-free mouthwash every day. If your mouthwash has alcohol, it may lead to a drying effect in your mouth which you need to avoid. You also should keep your mouth and your breath fresh by chewing sugar-free gum.

Take it slow.

Instead of jumping all into the new diet, start by cutting out carbs in your diet gradually. When you cut out carbs slowly, you are basically giving your body some time to get adjusted to the changes you are making. You are also not releasing a lot of ketones all at the same time keeping your breath fresh. You are essentially giving yourself some time to acclimate or “adapt” to the new keto diet, and thus avoid keto breath.

Keep stress levels down.

Finally, you need to de-stress yourself at the beginning of any new diet particularly when you are going for a keto diet. Stress can not only reduce the production of saliva and give you a dry mouth but it can also slow down the digestion of proteins. Anxiety can even cause acid reflux, which can again cause bad breath. You can practice meditation or yoga to ensure that you stay stress-free.


The Keto Diet is extremely popular these days. It is a very effective diet for people who want to lose weight quickly. However, the question that comes to your mind naturally whenever you hear about a popular diet is how it might affect your oral health. Overall, there can be some implications of going on a keto diet for your oral health. Consult your Houston dentist for more such information.

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