You can find a LOT of unpleasant surprises lurking on your floss. And that’s especially true if you’ve skipped a day or two (or more).
But there’s something even worse than seeing a reminder of yesterday’s meatloaf emerge on that string. And that’s seeing blood.
Healthy gums don’t bleed. But when floss runs red, it’s not always a sign of a dental problem. A new report reveals bleeding gums could ALSO be your first warning sign you’re falling short in a critical nutrient.
But that also means something else. When you can see the problem with your own two eyes, you can quickly fix it.
What your bleeding gums could be telling you
Bleeding gums could be a sign of gingivitis or gum inflammation, of course. And if your own mouth is starting to look like a crime scene when you brush and floss, then it’s time to stop putting off seeing the dentist.
If you’ve been avoiding that trip because of the coronavirus, don’t. Experts say it’s far safer than you might think. Check out my free report on visiting the dentist during the pandemic right here.
But gingivitis isn’t the only cause of bleeding gums. New research finds that some cases are closely related to low vitamin C levels.
The C-linked gum bleeds are often accompanied by a little bleeding in the eyes, too. Not some horror movie bleeding, of course. But instead those small red splotches some of us get in the whites of our eyes.
In the new study, some of the volunteers saw both of these symptoms vanish when they started taking vitamin C. If this were just one study out of the blue, I’d say take it with… well… a splash of OJ, while we wait for more data. But it’s not.
This was actually a review of 15 clinical trials. Which makes the link between low C and bleeding gums a LOT stronger and worth paying attention to. And while vitamin C deficiency isn’t super common these days, it isn’t unheard of either.
Look out for low vitamin C levels
About seven percent of Americans are living with full-blown vitamin C deficiency. Many others are in the “gray zone” where they’re not technically deficient but still well short of the ideal. And either group may end up battling bleeding gums.
And there are two key reasons for low C:
- Brace yourself. Low-carb, keto, and paleo diets could be partly to blame. You probably know I’m generally a big fan of lower carb eating. But the best sources of C tend to be “higher-sugar” fruits such as oranges, papaya, and tomatoes. And that means if you’re on a strict keto or paleo diet, you might miss out on some vitamin C opportunities. In that case, consider taking a supplement.
- Absorption issues can play a part too. We all absorb nutrients differently depending on our genetic makeup, diet, or age. And some folks can struggle specifically with soaking up vitamin C. When that happens, you can’t actually USE all that you take in. So you may need to go above and beyond the basic recommended intake to truly get what you need each day.
The Linus Pauling Institute recommends aiming for at least 400 mg of vitamin C per day. That’s more than four times the U.S. government’s recommended daily intake to make sure you not only get what you need but can absorb it and use it, too.
That’s more than what you’ll find in a typical multi, which usually has about 60-100 mg per dose. A medium-sized orange has about 100 grams… which is also what you’ll find in a cup of strawberries.
It takes a little bit of effort to get 400 mg a day and if you’re not sure you’re hitting it, consider taking a separate C supplement. And when you do you should see those bleeding gums improve.
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