There's a strong connection between vitamin C and healthy gums. And there's also a strong connection between bioflavonoids and how well vitamin C is absorbed. Bothare prominent ingredients of Good Gums® natural powdered dentifrice.
Vitamin C helps the lining of the gums (epithelium) stay healthy despite the bacteria that inhabit the mouth. Healthy gums isolate the bacteria from the roots of the teeth despite their close proximity. When bacteria start to penetrate the gums, through tiny lesions or weakened lining, it is within the gums that the immune system fights to eradicate the harmful bacteria and to ensure the health of both the gums as well as the underlying tooth-supporting ligaments and bone.
Vitamin C is key to the processes of cell growth, healing and repair of tissue. It's necessary for the production of collagen, the basic protein that makes up all connective tissue, including that of the gums and of the periodontal ligaments that help the gums stay tight to the teeth and the teeth to the jawbone. All creatures need vitamin C.
The bodies of almost all animals (and plants as well) can convert glucose into vitamin C, but not the simians (the higher primates including humans). Humans have to ingest what most animals make for themselves. Interestingly, animals internally produce a lot more vitamin C when their health is under attack. For example, a goat is about the same weight as a human and when healthy produces about 13,000 mg of vitamin C a day. But when under stress by infection or toxins, the goat produces more than eight times its normal amount of vitamin C. When there's a localized bacterial infection in humans, there's also an increased need for vitamin C.
Because vitamin C is water soluble, it must be either used or lost in urine. It cannot be stored in the body and must be ingested daily. It can take 33 or more times the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) before there's too much vitamin C for the digestive tract to comfortably process, and this would lead only to indigestion, not to any vitamin toxicity. The RDA is based on the trace amount needed for normal metabolic functioning. Too little is considered less than the minimal amount needed to prevent obvious maladies, such as gingivitis, anemia, swollen joints or scurvy. The RDA is 60 mg for an adult. But the much larger amounts that the body can use to achieve optimal health are not part of that equation. Most simians, following their own natural instincts and inclinations, consume 10 to 20 times the RDA established for humans. Some authorities recommend much higher levels of intake than the RDA: the Linus Pauling institute recommends 400 mg; the Vitamin C Foundation 3,000 mg.
A significant percentage of the US population doesn't even consume enough vitamin C to reach the RDA's low standard of malady-avoidance, not to mention the higher standard of health optimization. A study by the University of Arizona found that 5-15% suffered from vitamin C deficiency and 13-23% from vitamin C depletion. The percentage who'd gain health benefits from increased levels of vitamin C could of course be much, much higher.
Lack of vitamin C causes gum swelling and loose teeth. A 14 week study at the University of California San Francisco showed that when vitamin C intake was decreased, gums bled more; when it was increased, gum bleeding decreased. In another study, people who got less than the minimum daily amount of vitamin C had higher rates of periodontal disease than those who got the minimum, and they had three times the chance of gum disease than those who received three times the recommended amount of vitamin C.
Dr. Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, who won the Nobel Prize for discovering and studying vitamin C, believed that vitamin C is needed for the body to maintain the essential characteristic of living cells, the ability to exchange electrons with other molecules and cells. He believed that the flow of electrons between cells constituted a form of biological electricity by which the functioning of cells is regulated. He stressed that the molecules of live tissue have a slight lack of electrons, in order to facilitate the biological flow of electrons. He also believed that the flow of electrons creates subtle magnetic fields that the body uses in maintaining its health. Dead tissue on the other hand have the more chemically stable configuration in which molecules have no lack of electrons, and therefore no flow of electrical energy. Vitamin C is thought to facilitate electron exchanges in the body by interacting with chemicals in virtually all the cells to maintain the slight deficit of electrons.
If gums are healthy and diet is good, the blood will replenish the gums' vitamin C. But when under stress, what is commonly considered adequate blood levels of vitamin C might not be enough. Normally, healthy cells have a greater concentration of vitamin C than the blood does. But measurements of vitamin C are customarily taken only from the blood, so even when adequate levels of vitamin C show up in the blood, there may be a need for more in the tissue itself when it's under stress.
Bioflavonoids are thought to significantly enhance the absorption of Vitamin C, and possibly to prolong the effectiveness when they are combined together. Like vitamin C, the bioflavonoid nutrient is not made by the body and so has to be ingested. Unlike vitamin C, it's not so critical a nutrient that people can die from lack of it. Its value almost always comes from working with vitamin C, although it has also been associated with maintaining the walls of blood vessels to prevent bruising and bleeding.
Vitamin C and bioflavonoids are significant ingredients of Good Gums®.