Your eating habits play an important part in how your teeth look and feel. Are there plenty of vegetables in your diet? Do you eat a lot of candy or chips? Sometimes it can be difficult to know what is harmful to your teeth, especially concerning what you eat and drink. With Halloween right around the corner, it’s a good time to take a look at how your diet influences your teeth. Instead of eating your fill of Halloween sweets and treats this month, here are some foods you’ll want to load up on to keep your teeth healthy.
Berries are a wonderful source of Vitamin C and antioxidants. Antioxidants help fight inflammation, so they help keep your gums healthy. Strawberries and cranberries are particularly great choices when it comes to tooth health because they contain malic acid, a substance that naturally whitens your teeth.
Leafy greens offer a variety of tastes and textures, but all of them are excellent sources of calcium. Eating leafy greens forces you to chew more. When you chew, you get more saliva in your mouth and that helps wash away the bad bacteria that causes tooth decay. Kale and spinach are particularly important to mouth health because they contain folic acid, a type of vitamin B, that combats gum disease. If you aren’t a big fan of kale or spinach, try out microgreens, cabbage, watercress, bok choy, or arugula.
Perhaps a surprising food for keeping up healthy teeth, garlic is actually a good choice for two reasons. First, garlic is a natural antifungal and antiviral. This means that eating garlic will kill off bad bacteria that could build up and cause gum disease or tooth decay. Additionally, garlic has fiber, which teeth need to stay strong. Not to mention that garlic helps keep bad breath at bay!
Most dairy products are a safe bet when it comes to keeping up tooth health because they are rich in calcium to prevent dental erosion. Yogurt also has probiotics to help balance your mouth’s pH level by killing harmful bacteria. However, it’s important to note that not all yogurts are equal in helping keep your teeth healthy. Stick to Greek, full-fat, or reduced sugar varieties to get the most out of your yogurt. Since they have more protein and less sugar than regular yogurt, they’re optimal for preventing acidic buildup in your mouth.
Almonds are a powerhouse in the nutrient business. Even just a small handful of almonds delivers a wealth of benefits, including protein, fiber, calcium, antioxidants, and manganese. Additionally, almonds have a relatively low amount of sugar and calories compared to other types of nuts. You can strengthen your teeth while protecting your gums in just a few almonds.
While there are lots of good foods to help your teeth stay strong and healthy, there are plenty of others that should be avoided. Sugars and starches are the worst contenders in the fight for dental health. Sugars themselves aren’t necessarily the problem, but they invite unwanted bacteria that could potentially lead to cavities and other tooth decay. Sugary drinks, especially carbonated soft drinks, are full of acids that break down tooth enamel. Watch out for foods that are sticky or sugary.
It’s important to take your eating habits seriously in order to protect your teeth and promote overall dental health. Berries, leafy greens, garlic, yogurt, and almonds are great food choices for having or keeping a healthy smile. Some of the best vitamins and minerals for your teeth are Vitamin C, Vitamin D, calcium, and iron. Foods that are high in these essential nutrients are great at preventing sores, fighting gum disease, and thwarting tooth decay.
Staying up to date on your routine dental check ups is one of the best ways to prevent tooth decay and keep your mouth healthy. If your eating habits have left a mark on your smile, we can help with that. Schedule a standard dental appointment or a deep cleaning appointment with our office today!