How Your Nutrition Contributes to Your Oral Health

When you don't eat the right meals, your mouth will struggle to fight infections or help you build strong teeth. In this article, learn how nutrition affects oral health.

Did you know that what you eat impacts your overall health? Most people are keen on their diet because of maintaining a healthy weight or overall health. But another aspect of eating healthy is because of your oral health. When you don’t eat the right meals, your mouth will struggle to fight infections or help you build strong teeth. In this article, learn how nutrition affects oral health.

Food and Oral Health

Every food you take gets into contact with your teeth. While some foods contain nutrients needed for healthy teeth, others can harm them. Most Americans eat processed food containing a lot of salt and sugar, which can somewhat affect teeth. What people eat, especially teens and children, affects their teeth development. As such it’s important to pay attention to the diet your Fuquay-Varina dentist recommends. In addition, keep up with your dental appointments to ensure your oral health is in good condition.

Foods You Should Eat

Some of the foods that are good for your oral and general health include the following.

  • Whole grains: Brown rice, bran, and whole grain cereals contain iron, vitamin B, and magnesium which are good for strong teeth and gum.
  • Spinach and kale: They contain calcium that helps repair the enamel and reduce the risk of tooth decay.
  • Cheese: Contains high levels of calcium and phosphate, which strengthen the teeth while balancing mouth pH, which leads to less harmful acid in the mouth.
  • Beans and peas: Promote teeth growth
  • Fiber-packed vegetables and fruits: Bananas, oranges, apples, carrots, and cucumbers are cleansing agents that eliminate harmful bacteria that can cling to the teeth.
  • Sugar-free chewing gum: Stimulates the production of saliva, which helps clear away bacteria in the mouth
  • Water: Quench your thirst with water instead of sweetened drinks.

Foods You Should Avoid

There are a few beverages you should avoid or consume in moderation. That’s because of their low pH value, making them acidic and harmful to the teeth. Some are also high in sugar which can be destructive. Here is a list.

  • Fruit juices: Citrus juices like lemonade, grapefruit, and orange can wear down the enamel.
  • Red wine: This drink stains your teeth. If you love taking a glass with your meal, find creative ways to reduce the staining.
  • Vinegar: Especially apple cider vinegar which is highly acidic and can erode the enamel
  • Alcohol: It dries out your mouth

Reduce your intake of these drinks or take them with other foods to reduce their acidity. You should also brush your teeth immediately to eliminate the remaining food particles. In addition, avoid high carbs foods like potato chips, French bread, cereal, and popcorn. These foods can get stuck between your teeth. Every time you take them, floss or brush your teeth after.

Why Eating Right Is Important

The foods mentioned above that you should avoid can lead to tooth decay or gum disease. They contain high levels of starches, sugars, and carbs which increase the production of plaque acid. This acid attacks the tooth enamel causing it to break down, leading to cavities.

This is not to say you should avoid these foods completely. However, you can reduce their effect on your teeth by eating them during meals instead of between meals. The less these acid-producing ingredients get into contact with our teeth, the better.

To maintain overall oral health, you have to watch what you eat. Don’t forget to visit a dentist twice a year. This is important because if you’re developing a dental issue, the dentist can catch it early and treat it before it becomes a problem.

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