The mouth is often referred to as the “gateway to your general health.” Although oral and overall health are often viewed separately, there is a direct connection between the two. Several oral health issues can affect your overall health and vice versa. While you might have heard dental problems can raise your risk of cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and respiratory complications, those aren’t the only concerns. Recent research has found a connection between poor oral hygiene and metabolic syndrome, which is a cluster of conditions that can increase your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and stroke. Here’s how the health of your smile can influence your metabolism.