29 Jul 6 Friendly Foods For Our Teeth
Brushing, flossing and regular dental visits are the basics for healthy teeth – but what we eat plays a vital role in our oral health. There is a lot of talk about the foods that can be harmful to our dental health… but what about the ones that help us build healthier, stronger teeth and gums? There are always small, simple (and low-cost) things we can do every day that will make a big difference over time.
So get ready to add these six teeth-friendly foods to your next shopping list!
So this may be an obvious one, but it’s a biggie nonetheless. Water is essential to the functioning of our entire body and is vital in maintaining a healthy mouth. If we don’t drink enough water, we risk dehydration, which over time causes our saliva to thicken and leads to some serious chaos in our mouth.
Saliva is primarily made up of water, and it helps to break down the foods we eat and neutralises bacteria and acids in our mouth. A quick rinse of water after we eat can help reduce plaque build-up as the swishing around our mouth loosens and removes debris from our teeth and gums. This can also help to reduce any staining that may occur.
If you love a cheeseboard as much as we do – then do we have some good news for you! Cheese helps to prevent erosion by neutralising acids within the mouth. It is also an excellent source of calcium which plays an essential role in the formation and maintenance of our teeth and gums. Now we’re not saying to eat a whole block of cheese to reap these benefits, but a couple of pieces will do just fine.
3. Fruit and Vegetables
Fruit and veggies – especially those high in fibre – are great for our oral health. It may take a little longer to chew these foods, but this stimulates saliva production and is another helper in the neutralisation of acids. Salad vegetables and crunchy greens are another great addition to our diet, as they have both a high calcium and water content. The water helps to balance out sugar intake, so be sure to add these to the shopping trolley!
As I’m sure you’re already aware by this point, calcium is important for our teeth. And while our body is all about balance – Vitamin D goes hand in hand with calcium. Without enough vitamin D in our system, our bodies aren’t able to fully absorb all the nutrients calcium has to offer us. We could consume a ton of calcium every day – but this doesn’t mean our body is actually able to absorb and make use of it all. And this is where fish comes in!
Adding some fatty fish (like salmon) to your diet is a great way to maintain vitamin D levels, which aids in the absorption process. This, in turn, helps your teeth to take full advantage of all the goodies that come with calcium intake.
While citrus fruits are highly acidic, they are an excellent source of vitamin C. And vitamin C is a great helper of strengthening the blood cells and connective tissues around our entire body – and when it comes to our teeth – the stronger our blood vessels and connective tissues are, the more powerful they are in reducing inflammation. This can help in slowing down the progression of gum disease and helping to keep our mouth that little bit healthier. As we mentioned earlier, citrus is an acidic fruit, so remember to wait at least half an hour before brushing your teeth.
Not that we needed another excuse to brew a warm pot of tea in this Winter weather, but green and black tea contain these amazing micronutrients called polyphenols. These polyphenols suppress the nasty plaque-causing bacteria in our mouth.
After we eat, our mouth is full of residual sugars and bacteria. It’s these bacteria that interact with the sugar in our mouth to create acids that destroy our tooth enamel and cause damage to our teeth and gums. Because of the bacteria-fighting properties that tea has, it makes for an excellent choice to have after, between or even during meals although try to limit the added teaspoons of sugar if you’re having a few throughout the day.