Whilst keeping your teeth clean and healthy is predominantly done through maintaining a proper oral hygiene routine, your diet also comes into play. Certain foods can actually benefit your oral health and help promote strong, healthy, stain-free teeth.
For this health guide, Dr Payal Bhalla, Dentist and Clinical Lead for Quest Dental, shares the six foods that benefit your oral health.
1. Dairy foods
Dairy products such as cow’s milk, yoghurt and cheese are good for your teeth as they contain casein proteins that form a protective film on the surface of your teeth; these proteins then work to protect the hard outer layer of your teeth, otherwise known as enamel.
These foods are also rich in calcium which helps keep your bones and teeth strong, and they also contain minerals called phosphorus which repair any damage to your teeth.
2. Crunchy veg
Crunchy veggies such as celery, carrot and apple are also good veggies to snack on throughout the day, as they help to keep your teeth and mouth clean.
They do this because these types of hard, crunchy foods stimulate the flow of saliva, which helps to prevent dry mouth and scrub away food particles or bacteria that may be lingering in the mouth. And lingering foods in the teeth may promote teeth damage, such as decay due to plaque laying dormant on the teeth for hours on end.
3. Leafy greens
Leafy green veggies such as lettuce and spinach can help keep your oral health in check by naturally strengthening your tooth enamel and providing a much-needed barrier against harmful bacteria. These types of foods are packed with vitamins and minerals, all important to maintain your oral health and maintain strong teeth.
Nuts are packed with vitamin D and calcium, so munching on these throughout the day is an excellent way of snacking that also benefits your teeth! Not only are nuts packed with vital nutrients, the crunching effect in your mouth actually stimulates saliva production and works to clean your teeth and mouth.
The best nuts to eat are walnuts, as these contain magnesium, iron, potassium, folic acid and many nutrients which help improve your oral health.
5. Meats and Fatty fish
Meats and fish are rich in protein, so they help to build and maintain strong teeth. Eating meat often means a lot of chewing also, and this is good for your teeth as the saliva produced from this helps to wash away debris and particles.
Omega 3 fatty acids, which are found in most fish, also help to improve the overall health of teeth and help them become stronger, certain fish such as salmon are packed full of these4 fatty acids, which help to heal your teeth from any abrasions, cuts or early signs of gum disease.
6. Green tea
Drinking green tea benefits your oral health as it can help to combat the bacteria that cause cavities, as well as helping to keep gums healthy, reducing inflammation and remineralising weak enamel. However, do be mindful of how much you drink and when you drink it. Drinking tea and coffee can cause staining on the teeth, so ensure that you brush properly after drinking.
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