Weston A Price
Weston Price studied dentistry. Dr Price was a genius in the true
sense of the word.
William James tells us that genius "means little
more than the faculty of perceiving in an unhabitual way," while
Ezra Pound says that it is "the capacity to see ten things where the
ordinary man sees one." Einstein adds that "Intellectuals solve
problems, geniuses prevent them."
Practicing in Cleveland, Ohio in the 1930s, Dr
Price saw what all the dentists of his time saw, but his
conclusions, in the form of questions, were far beyond the scope of
dentistry. They were genius.
He asked himself why it was that the healthier
(overall health) the individual, the healthier the individualís jaw,
teeth, and gums. He knew that the foundation of true health is
nutrition (we are what we eat) and he asked himself what was it in
our diets that was causing so many unhealthy beings to land in his
dental chair. His first answer was an even brighter question: "Could
it be our processed foods?"
Every theory stays a theory unless the theorist
acts upon it. Thomas Edison told us, "Genius is 1% inspiration and
99% perspiration." Dr Price was a genius.
Dr Price left his practice and traveled around
the world looking for indigenous people who were untouched by
processed foods, to examine their teeth. His work, his findings, and
his genius have today landed him the title The Charles Darwin of
Nutrition. I like to call him the Father of Preventive Dentistry,
though he is commonly referred to as a Dietary Anthropologist.
Dr Weston Price studied fourteen different
cultures. From tribes in Africa to the Eskimos in Alaska, from the
Polynesian Islands to the Swiss Alps, Dr Price sought out isolated
primitives looking for those factors responsible for healthy teeth.
His first discovery was that the further away
from civilization, the fewer cavities he found. He had to look in
three or four mouths to find a single cavity. Yes, he found some
very green teeth, almost moss covered (as it were), but beneath this
coat was a fine, strong tooth, planted firmly in a strong, full jaw.
He found straight teeth, little decay, healthy
bodies, and resistance to disease. The further he got away from
civilization, the healthier the peoples. He found cultures in which
cancer and heart disease were unknown. Also unknown to these
cultures was crime. The had no terms for words such as "jail" or
The diets he uncovered were widely varied, but
all of them provided at least four times the amounts of water
soluble vitamins and minerals (especially calcium) and at least ten
times the amounts of fat soluble vitamins as the diets of so called
Pregnant mothers and fathers both practiced
premarital and pre-conception nutritional programs. The motherís
health was maintained to produce healthy off spring, and children
were spaced apart far enough to give the mother time to recuperate
and regain her health. All of these civilizations had special foods
for pregnant or lactating mothers, as well as special diets for
Sadly, Price also discovered that just one
generation of separation from these practices brought a host of
health problems: narrowed faces, crowded teeth, reduction in
immunity, and degenerative disease. Just take a look at the Native
Americans today, full of our American foods, to see how nations of
great, healthy hunters have degenerated into obese, disease filled
shadows, suffering from heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and
Dr Price wrote up his findings, along with many
pictures that show the striking contrasts between healthy
individuals and those just one generation away from their roots, in
his book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. Later he
published his research on root canals and the extensive problems
associated with them in Oral & Systemic and Dental Infections &
the Degenerative Diseases.
Yes, we must agree with old Abe Lincoln when he
says that, "Towering genius disdains a beaten path. It seeks regions
hitherto unexplored," but sadly, as my favorite Russian author
Dostoyevsky adds: "Innovators and men of genius have almost always
been regarded as foolsÖ. "
Fifty years after his death, a few within the
bastions of the orthodox dental establishment began to look at his
work. Dental amalgams and root canals are now being questioned.
Holistic Dentistry is on the rise, for as Price discovered, the
health of the individual determines the health of one's teeth. If
you have a cavity, itís not because of your toothpaste; itís your
diet. Dr Price preached a nutrient-dense, whole foods, organic diet
till the day he died.
Will you listen to this genius?
Nutrition and Physical Degeneration
We want to thank the The Price-Pottenger
Nutrition Foundation for the use of Dr Price's picture.