You probably know that sugar causes cavities. But did you know that the effects of your diet on your teeth go further than that? In fact, you can do your mouth a world of good with a healthy diet. Good nutrition builds strong teeth from the inside-out. So what should you eat?
Crunchy fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, apples, and celery, can have a high sugar content. Normally this would make them unlikely contenders for a mouth-healthy diet. In this instance, however, their texture redeems them. These crunchy fruits and vegetables can stimulate saliva production while actually scraping the surfaces of the teeth clean. It can’t replace tooth brushing, but can provide a valuable boost to your mouth between meals.
Everyone know that dairy is a great source of calcium. Calcium is important for tooth development, and for building and maintaining strong enamel. Cultured dairy, such as sour cream and yogurt, offer an added benefit. These foods act as probiotics. They help promote the healthy bacteria population in your mouth. The healthy bacteria can crowd out the “bad” bacteria that can buildup in the mouth, causing decay.
All sorts of vegetables are great as a source of mouth-friendly vitamins, but dark leafy greens really pack a punch. Leafy greens are full of Vitamin A for healthy gums and strong enamel. They are also rich in folic acid, a B vitamin that reduces gum inflammation and fights tooth decay. A proper balance of nutrients and minerals is important for every element of your health.
What to Avoid
Avoid sugary foods and drinks, such as candy and soda. The bacteria that cause tooth decay feed on sugar. In addition, most fruit is full of sugar and can also lead to cavities. Coffee, tea, and wine are leading causes of tooth discoloration. Their dark color and tannins mean that they can easily stain your teeth.
Schedule an Appointment
Do you have questions about how your diet can affect your teeth? Our dedication to patient education and comfort means that we will always be happy to answer any questions you might have about your dental health. To schedule an appointment, contact the office of Drs. Alan Dechter and Matthew Moy in Silver Spring, MD online or at (301) 508-9755.