We all know that daily brushing and flossing are key to maintaining healthy teeth and gums, but what we eat can also have a big effect on our oral health too! Here are a few surprisingly smart food choices to help keep teeth healthy and strong.
This one might not be incredibly surprising, but water is so important to oral health that we can’t leave it out! Saliva plays an essential role in neutralizing acids in the mouth and preventing bad breath and tooth decay, and since saliva is made up of about 99% H20, it’s important to stay hydrated!
Bonus: Swishing water after a meal helps flush out bacteria and food debris from your mouth, while also helping to prevent staining and increasing saliva production.
Green and Black Tea
Green and black tea contain a natural plant compound called polyphenols, which helps suppress bacteria in your mouth.
How it works: Bacteria feeds on sugar in the mouth, then produces acid which attacks tooth enamel. The presence of polyphenols help suppress the presence of these acid-producing bacteria in the mouth early on.
“Nature’s Toothbrush” - Fresh, Crunchy Fruits and Veggies
Crunchy, high-fiber fresh fruits and vegetables (like apples, celery, and carrots) are great for “scrubbing” your teeth and stimulating your gums. They also increase saliva production because of the extra chewing they require. Their high water content also helps offset their sugar content!
We all know that cheese and other dairy products are packed with calcium, which is great for strong teeth and bones. But what makes cheese a superfood for teeth is that it helps protect your teeth from decay by decreasing the amount of acid in your mouth and on your teeth and increasing saliva production. Cheese is a great choice for snacking in between meals or after a meal.
Bonus: Because certain compounds in cheese adhere to your teeth, cheese provides a buffer between your teeth and not only acidic foods, but also potentially staining food and drink. Conclusion: wine and cheese is a great pairing for more than just the taste!