When it comes to your teeth and oral health, you really are what you eat.
One of the first areas to decline when your diet is less than ideal is your oral health, according to the American Dental Association (ADA).
An interesting fact is that people with 25 or more teeth tend to eat a more nutritious diet. Overall, the best choices for your teeth are cheeses, meats and nuts. These foods help protect your enamel by neutralizing acids and providing the calcium and phosphorous needed to keep your teeth strong. Firm fruits and vegetables contain natural sugars but the high water content dilutes the effects of sugar. Fruits stimulate the flow of saliva that helps protect against tooth decay and bacteria in the mouth.
Below is a list of some of the foods that provide benefit to our teeth:
- Wild caught salmon is a great source of vitamin D. Vitamin D allows your body to absorb and use calcium which protects your teeth and gums from disease.
- Eating cheese raises the pH in the mouth and lowers the risk of tooth decay. Cheese also contains calcium and protein which helps strengthen tooth enamel.
- Plain Greek yogurt is high in calcium and protein which are good for your teeth. It also has beneficial bacteria for your gums and your gut.
- Apples are high in fiber and water. The chewing action of eating an apple produces saliva to help rinse away bacteria and food particles. Eating an apple is not a substitute for brushing but can give your teeth and gums a good scrubbing after a meal.
- Strawberries are packed with vitamin C, antioxidants and fiber. They are a good source of potassium and manganese. Another great benefit is that strawberries are a great at home tooth whitener. They contain maleic acid which is a natural enamel whitener. If you crush up strawberries and mix them with baking soda, you can make an at home tooth whitener to brighten your smile. Be careful with the seeds getting caught in your teeth and gums. The added benefit of eating Strawberries is that you will want to floss.
Dr. Janeen Ferraro is a general dentist located at Ocean Dental, 167 Avenue At the Common, Suite 16, Shrewsbury. She is an active member of the American Dental Association, The Academy of General Dentistry, The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, The New Jersey Dental Association and a member of the Better Business Bureau. For more information, visit www.oceandentalnj.com or call 732-935-0905.