anticariogenic – A food that contributes favorably to dental health by discouraging acid production.

antioxidant – A substance that prevents cell damage from free radicals.

beriberi – A vitamin B1 (thiamine) deficiency which causes loss of appetite, muscle weakness, enlarged heart, and burning tongue.

cariogenic – A fermentable carbohydrate that will cause a reduction of salivary and plaque pH to less than 5.5, thus promoting tooth decalcification.

cariostatic – Caries-inhibiting.

cheilosis – Unilateral or bilateral presence of cracks in the corners of the mouth.

cholesterol – Waxy lipid found in all body cells; made by the liver and found only in animal products.

collagen – Connective tissue that helps support body structures such as skin, bones, teeth and tendons.

complex carbohydrate – Sugars containing more than 12 carbon atoms. Found in foods such as whole grains, vegetables, and beans.

demineralization – The removal or loss of calcium, phosphate, and other minerals from tooth enamel.

diet history – A detailed dietary record which may include a 24 hour or 3, 5, and 7-day recall.

dysphagia – Difficulty swallowing.

fermentable carbohydrate – Carbohydrates that can be metabolized by bacteria in plaque to decrease the pH to a level where demineralization occurs.

free radical – Causes cell damage by way of oxidation.

glossitis – Inflammation of the tongue.

HDL – High-density lipoproteins, also referred to as healthy cholesterol.

heme iron – Iron provided from animal sources.

homeostasis – To maintain a relatively stable state of equilibrium.

hyperlipidemia – Elevated concentrations of triglycerides and/or cholesterol.

insulin – A hormone needed for cell utilization of carbohydrates.

LDL – Low-density lipoproteins, also referred to bad cholesterol.

legumes – A plant that grows from a pea or a pod.

non-heme iron – Iron provided from a plant source.

nutrient-dense – Containing a high percentage of nutrients in relation to the number of calories it provides.

osteopenia – A decrease in density, calcification, or insufficient synthesis of bone which may put an individual at risk for osteoporosis.

refined carbohydrate – Processed carbohydrates from which the fiber and bran have been removed, leaving only starch.

vegan – A person who eats only a plant based diet and consumes no foods of animal origin.7

xylitol – A sugar alcohol which has the ability to reduce S. mutans in the mouth.