We tell all our patients to brush, floss and have regular dental checkups and cleanings. But did you know that nutrition plays a large role in your dental health as well? Beyond cutting back on sweets and sodas, some foods actually help your teeth stay strong and healthy. Here are just a few that might surprise you:
Tea. Those tiny little tea leaves can be quite powerful. They contain compounds that interact with plaque and either destroy or suppress bacteria, stopping them from growing or producing tooth-attacking acid. Tea leaves also readily absorb fluoride from soil. As a result, some tea drinks contain fluoride, which helps prevent tooth decay by making teeth more resistant to acid attacks from plaque bacteria and sugars in the mouth. One caveat here – remember to brush your teeth after drinking dark tea so it doesn’t stain your teeth.
Cheese. If you’re watching your weight you might want the low-fat variety but cheese is filled with tooth-friendly calcium and vitamin D. According to a study published by the Academy of General Dentistry, eating cheese and other dairy products may help protect teeth against cavities.
Seafood. Many of those lovely creatures from the sea contain phosphorous, a vital component to building strength in your teeth and jaw. There is more phosphorous in seafood than in veggies – tuna for example may have 20 percent or more of your phosphorous needs in one 3 ounce serving!
Try these tasty ways to improve your dental health – and let us know if you have any questions about how your nutrition can help or hinder your beautiful smile.
Don’t hesitate to call us or visit our website – we welcome your questions and feedback!
All the best,
*Sources: American Academy of General Dentistry, British Nutrition Foundation’s Nutrition Bulletin and the American Dental Association