How diet affects our dental health - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

How diet affects our dental health

The other day I was at the Family Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry of Brooklyn and reflecting on just how much diet can impact our overall oral health. As such, it is essential to take few moments to consider how what we eat and drink affects our dental health. From children to teens, we should all begin establishing healthy eating habits to prevent tooth decay.

Doing so is critical because when plaque or bacteria come into contact with sugar in our mouth, our body produces acid, which attacks our teeth for 20 minutes or more. Over time, this results in receding gums and damaged teeth. Here are some things we can do to prevent or offset these harmful reactions.

Best Foods for Good Dental Health

Healthy eating guides generally recommend the following foods as a good source of nutrition: fruits and vegetables, cereals and bread, meat, and milk or dairy.

Cheese. Cheese and dairy products are essential to good health. If your body is lactose tolerant, you should add some yogurt, mild cheeses and low-fat milk to your menu. Foods that rich in calcium can help to strengthen your teeth and improve tooth brightness.

Nuts and lean proteins.The phosphorous found in some protein-rich food scan be quite helpful in restoring the minerals to your teeth and in turn in protecting your enamel.

Fruits. Fruits like apple, kiwi, can help you to maintain good oral health. The crunchiness of the apple helps work your teeth as you chew it and the water content protects your teeth from acid as it acts as a buffer. Kiwi contains high levels of vitamin c, which is essential for gum tissue.

Vitamin C can maintain the collagen of your teeth. There are also other foods like sesame seeds, onion, sweet potatoes, raisins, celery are good for dental health.

Water. You should strive to drink at least eight glasses of water each day. Not only does it help your body overall, but water also shields your teeth from harmful bacteria.

Foods and Drinks that Promote Tooth Decay

Sugary foods. Sugar is one of the biggest culprits in damaging your teeth through decalcification, so it should be avoided as much as possible. Items to avoid include white or brown sugar, evaporated cane sugar, sweets, as well as most jams. These foods all produce the same effect, which is causing cavities and decay.

Refined or starchy foods. Refined or foods that are artificially processed cause a lot of damage to our teeth. These are foods that contain flour like bread, crackers, doughnuts, muffins, pastries, tortillas, bagels, and sandwiches. These are rich in starch which also leads to tooth decay.

Acidic drinks and coffee. Coffee and drinks that are high in acid content are bad for our teeth. Besides changing the natural color of our teeth, they also weaken the enamel of the tooth and open them up to decay.

Additional Considerations

While on the subject of drinks, alcohol is not only bad for our health, it is equally bad for the teeth. It affects the tooth’s enamel, making it weak and brittle.

Now that you have a good idea of which foods to eat and which to avoid, you’re in a much better position to improve your dental health. If you’re like most, chances are you’ve already adopted some bad eating habits. However, don’t despair – even if you only heed a portion of what you’ve just read you’re already better off than before. All the best on your journey to optimal dental health!

 

 


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