If it’s true that you are what you eat, then the health of your gums and teeth will be determined by what you love indulging in. The starchy and sugary foods and beverages that we love feed the harmful bacteria present in our mouths. Such foods can easily lead to tooth decay.
However, taking care of your teeth has always been easier than you may think. In fact, you can take care of your oral health while you are eating. With proper nutrition, you can easily strengthen your teeth.
As much as brushing and flossing are essential for your dental health, a healthy smile is determined mostly by what you eat. Simply because you could be brushing as you should but still be eating foods that don’t promote a healthier smile.
Whenever you enjoy a sugary or starchy meal, plaque (a thin invisible film of saliva, food debris, and bacteria) forms on your teeth’s surface. When sugary foods come in contact with plaque, acids start forming. The acids can attack your teeth for over 20 minutes. If this happens repeatedly, your enamel (hard outer covering of the teeth) starts breaking down.
Additionally, your body releases an inflammatory response that breaks down the bone and gums, and other supporting structures. This is why eating whole grains that are low in sugar, quality proteins, or fruits and vegetables is the way to go. These foods promote saliva production and remineralization, which help keep your gums and teeth healthy.
When you take simple carbohydrates that stick on your teeth, harmful bacteria have an easier time attacking your teeth, leading to cavities. However, this is not the case with wholemeal grains.
Whole wheat pasta and bread, brown rice, oats, corn, and other whole grains are wiser food choices since they have complex carbohydrates, which bacteria cannot easily digest, keeping cavities at bay.
Plus, they are packed with other nutrients, such as fiber, which help in increasing saliva production. Saliva helps fight the acid that bacteria releases and also remove food debris and plaque from the teeth.
Cheese is also known for increasing saliva production, which helps in washing away bacteria. At the same time, it is low in sugar and has a protein known as casein, which is useful in strengthening the tooth. Cheese also contains phosphate, which aids in balancing pH in the mouth and preserving the enamel. In addition, it is rich in calcium, an essential nutrient when it comes to maintaining bone density.
Milk is also good for your teeth since it is rich in calcium and other nutrients that promote healthy teeth. It also reduces the pH in the mouth, thus fighting decay.
Yogurt is also a healthy drink that is rich in calcium and probiotics, which can help you fight against gum disease and cavities. The probiotics in yogurt can help you fight bad breath.
Generally, foods that are rich in fiber are good for your teeth. Therefore, eating fiber-rich fruits will be beneficial to you. If you eat apples, pears, or other fibrous fruits, you can increase saliva production and help clean your teeth. Plus, this will help neutralize the malic and citric acids that are left in your mouth.
Chewing an apple is better than drinking the juice since the fibrous texture of fresh apples’ stimulates the gums, protecting them from cavity-causing bacteria.
Cranberries are also teeth-friendly since they have polyphenols and antioxidants, which help disrupt the plaque formation process. Avoid dried and packaged cranberries since they can be packed with loads of sugar.
Strawberries and other berries rich in vitamin C are also good since they help in the growth and repair of tissues in the body.
Leafy vegetables are high fiber foods that are not only good for digestion and maintaining healthy cholesterol levels, but they are also good for your teeth. Chewing fresh vegetables increases saliva production. At the same time, vegetables scrub your teeth, aiding in removing bacteria from the mouth.
Protein sources such as meat increase the production of saliva. Other than that, they are packed with phosphorus, which is essential for protecting the enamel.
There are still other worthy mentions that can help improve your oral health, such as fluoridated water, tea, and coffee. Don’t forget to visit our dentist at Station Dental Group in Arvada for laser dentistry or any other dental service.