Florida Dental Convention

FDC2023 Session Directory

Eating to Optimize Brain Health, Gut Health and Mental Health

Course Code: C27
Speaker: Ms. Liz Pearson, RD
CE Hours: 1.50
Start: Thursday, June 29, 2023, 2:00 PM
End: Thursday, June 29, 2023, 3:30 PM
Audience: Dentists, Assistants, Hygienists, Practice Administrators, Laboratory Technician, Dental Student, Guest


 EARLY 4/14


 ONSITE 6/16 


















The two most common psychological disorders in the world are depression and anxiety. Their impact on happiness and well-being is tremendous. Although all mental health disorders are extremely complex in their causation, a compelling and growing body of research says diet plays a significant role in their prevention and treatment. Certain nutrients and dietary patterns promote a healthy brain, as well as a healthy gut microbiome — both of which are critical to mental well-being. In contrast, a lack of specific nutrients and an excess of unhealthy, processed foods can greatly harm mental health. This insightful, research-based and very timely presentation will be about optimizing mental health, and significantly reducing the risk of depression and anxiety, with food.

Learning objectives:

Participants will be able to:

  • understand how food choice impacts the health of the brain and gut, and ultimately the risk of depression and anxiety.
  • identify the most important foods for brain and gut health, including high fiber and plant foods; fermented foods; and specific nutrients, including Vitamin D, omega-3 fats and more.
  • understand how different beverages affect mental health, including water, coffee, tea, sugary drinks and alcohol.
  • realize why ultra-processed foods, especially those high in sugar, are so harmful to brain health, gut health and happiness.


Speaker: Ms. Liz Pearson, RD

About the speaker: Bachelor’s degree in food nutrition, Ryerson University; dietetic internship, Toronto General Hospital; registered dietitian.

Disclosure: Neither I nor members of my immediate family have any financial relationships with commercial entities that may be relevant to this presentation.

(c) 2023, Florida Dental Association