Foods and Drinks that Promote Oral Health
Posted on 9/11/2023 by Evan
|A nutritious, well-balanced diet is vital for overall health and greatly impacts oral wellness. Certain foods and drinks contain beneficial nutrients, compounds, and properties that help maintain strong, disease-free teeth and gums.
Milk, cheese, yogurt, and other dairy products are excellent sources of calcium and protein for building and preserving strong tooth enamel. They also provide vitamin D for optimal calcium absorption and bone density. Low-fat dairy options optimize nutritional benefits while minimizing adverse effects. Getting at least 2-3 daily servings supports oral and systemic health.
Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables, especially crisp, raw produce, help scrub plaque from teeth through their high fiber content. Their crunch also stimulates salivary flow to aid natural cleansing. Vitamin C-rich fruits and veggies like citrus, tomatoes, peppers, broccoli, and spinach additionally help heal and strengthen vulnerable gum tissue through their antioxidant effects. Aim for a rainbow of colors.
Both green and black teas contain antioxidants called polyphenols that inhibit the growth of cavity-causing bacteria in the mouth. Regularly sipping unsweetened hot or cold tea bolsters natural oral defenses. Compounds in oolong and white teas offer similar benefits.
Sugar-Free Chewing Gum
Chewing sugarless gum for 10-20 minutes after eating increases saliva flow to wash away food particles and neutralize mouth acidity from meals. Look for types with xylitol or erythritol, natural sweeteners with anti-decay properties that suppress cariogenic bacteria.
Fish, poultry, eggs, beans, nuts, and seeds provide phosphorus, zinc, and vitamin B3 for healthy tooth structure and gums. Choosing leaner proteins optimizes nutritional density. Meat also stimulates protective salivary secretions.
Staying hydrated with water is crucial for saliva production and overall oral functioning. Sipping water after sugary or acidic drinks can instantly neutralize pH. Drinking optimally fluoridated water further strengthens enamel.
Emphasizing a balanced whole-food diet full of natural sources of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants optimizes systemic and oral well-being. Nutrient-rich foods help maintain disease-free mouths, fresh breath, and vibrant, healthy smiles.