Chew on This: Healthy Foods for Your Teeth
Many dentists caution patients about the teeth damaging effects of sugar-laden and high-acid foods. Eating and drinking such items as candy, coffee, black tea, spaghetti sauce or soda can break down tooth enamel, cause discoloration and lead to cavities. But what are the best healthy foods that are good for the teeth?
The Best Foods for Your Teeth
There are many healthy foods for your teeth. According to The American Dental Association (ADA), calcium-rich foods such as cheese, milk, yogurt and leafy greens are the best foods for your teeth. This healthy food list provides the right nutrition for healthy teeth.
Calcium-Rich Healthy Food
Yogurt is a power food full of gut-friendly probiotics, that also neutralize tooth decay and fight the bad bacteria that causes gum disease. In addition, healthy food items that are rich in calcium may protect against cavities when eaten with foods that break down enamel.
Even though dairy products are good for oral health, young children should not be put to bed with a bottle full of milk. The dietary sugar, lactose, can be very damaging when allowed to coat teeth and penetrate the enamel overnight.
Also, fruit juices or other sugary beverages should not be nursed overnight. The lingering sugars feed the acid-causing bacteria responsible for tooth decay.
Crunchy Fruits and Vegetables
Food for healthy teeth is also great for your body. Include lots of fruits and vegetables in your daily diet. Crunchy plants like apples, celery or carrots increase saliva flow, which helps neutralize mouth acids and the rough textures scrape plaque and food debris off the tooth surface.
Dental plaque is the soft, bacteria-ridden film that accumulates on teeth, gums and under the gum line. If this sticky substance is not removed with regular brushing, tooth decay and gum disease may develop. When plaque is left to linger in the mouth, it hardens and becomes tartar, a hard material that can’t be removed with tooth brushing. Only a professional dental cleaning can rid you of tartar.
Limit High-Acid Plant Foods
Although fruits like oranges, grapefruit, and tomatoes offer great nutrition, they are also high in acid. Over time, exposure to these healthy foods can break down tooth enamel, in the say way a high-acid beverage all day like soda, coffee or fruit juice will do. Brush your teeth after consuming these items. If you can’t brush, rinse your mouth with clean water.
One healthy food for teeth that may surprise you is a beverage, green tea. Unlike black tea, green tea does not cause staining, and it contains powerful antioxidants called polyphenols, known to break down plaque buildup.
These foods offer good nutrition for whole body wellness and help protect your dental health. But like most things in life, moderation is the key. Choosing healthy food alone will not safeguard your oral health. You also need to keep up with twice daily brushing, flossing at least once per day and routine dentist visits.