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You Are What You Eat: Nutrition and Periodontal Health


Maria L. Geisinger, DDS, MS

Credit Hours:

2 Hour(s)


Periodontitis is a chronic inflammatory disease caused by oral microorganisms, characterized by the loss of structures supporting the teeth, i.e., periodontal ligament, cementum, and alveolar bone. In the United States, the prevalence of pe...

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Periodontitis is a chronic inflammatory disease caused by oral microorganisms, characterized by the loss of structures supporting the teeth, i.e., periodontal ligament, cementum, and alveolar bone. In the United States, the prevalence of periodontitis among adults over 30 years of age is approximately 42% and causes significant impact on overall and oral quality of life.1 While periodontitis is initiated by the microorganisms and their byproducts in dental plaque biofilm, its disease progression is mediated by the individual host immune-inflammatory response.2 As such, periodontal disease progression may be influenced by many systemic and environmental risk factors, including smoking, diabetes mellitus, alcohol consumption, psychosocial stress, and/or sex hormonal levels. In addition to these systemic influences, recent findings suggest that periodontitis is also influenced by local and/or serum/plasma micronutrient levels. These levels are dependent upon dietary, lifestyle factors, and/or nutrigenetic characteristics.

The old adage,“you are what you eat“ relates to periodontal health as well. Eating a balanced diet is critical to overall health and an imbalance, deficit, or overconsumption of dietary components can lead to severe systemic and oral diseases. Both macronutrients (protein, fats, and carbohydrates) and micronutrients can impact cell function, host cell immunity, and biofilm formation and maturation. Findings suggest that dietary consumption may influence periodontal health and that deficiencies of both macro- and micronutrients may play a role in the onset or exacerbation of periodontal diseases. This course seeks to review the association between micronutrient levels and periodontitis and their underlying physiologic mechanisms.

  • Intended Audience:

    Dentists, Dental Hygienists, Dental Assistants, Dental Students, Dental Hygiene Students, Dental Assisting Students

  • Date Course Online:

    Aug 3, 2023

  • Last Revision Date:


  • Course Expiration Date:

    Aug 2, 2026

  • Cost:


  • Method:


  • AGD Subject Code(s):

    490, 150

  • Technical Requirements:

    Stable internet connection and the latest version of browser and device software are recommended.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, the dental professional should be able to:

  • Discuss the role of inflammation in periodontal disease.
  • Recognize nutrient requirements for optimal oral health.
  • Understand the connection between diet/nutrition and periodontal health.
  • Assess the effects of both macro- and micronutrient imbalance on periodontal health status.
  • Recognize the potential role of dietary modification in periodontal therapy.
  • Identify and utilize tools to counsel and motivate patients to seek dietary modifications.


  • P&G is providing these resource materials to dental professionals. We do not own this content nor are we responsible for any material herein.
  • Participants must always be aware of the hazards of using limited knowledge in integrating new techniques or procedures into their practice.  Only sound evidence-based dentistry should be used in patient therapy.

Note:  Registration is required to take test.


Conflict of Interest Disclosure Statement

  • Dr. Geisinger reports no conflicts of interest associated with this course. She has no relevant financial relationships to disclose.

Mia L. Geisinger, DDS, MS is a Professor and Director of Advanced Education in Periodontology in the Department of Periodontology in the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Dentistry. Dr. Geisinger received her BS in Biology ...

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Submission Information

Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) Submission For credit transfers to appear in your AGD account in real time, make sure to add your AGD membership number in the field provided on the “Share Your Test Score” page.

CE Broker For all states that use CE Broker for licensure, “proof of completions” are electronically reported the first of every month. If a course was taken in November, the “proof of completion” will be submitted the beginning of December.


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Approved PACE Program Provider


Nationally Approved PACE Program Provider for FAGD/MAGD credit.

Approval does not imply acceptance by any regulatory authority or AGD endorsement.

8/1/2021 to 7/31/2027

Provider ID# 211886


AADH Approved Program Provider

Procter & Gamble is designated as an approved Provider by the American Academy of Dental Hygiene, Inc. #AADHPGC (January 1, 2024-December 31, 2025). Approval does not imply acceptance by a state or provincial Board of Dentistry. Licensee should maintain this document in the event of an audit.