Everyone knows that foods like candy and beverages like soda are terrible for your teeth, but it’s harder to determine the dental impact of certain others. For example, not many people know that beer and citrus are considered bad for your teeth due to their high levels of acidity. Other foods may be surprisingly good or bad for the teeth, and 10 of those foods are discussed in this article.
The Growing Problem of Tooth Loss
In a study published in 2012, it was revealed that 91% of adults ages 20-64 have dental caries, otherwise known as cavities. It’s important to understand that cavities can lead to tooth loss, but they are easily preventable with proper oral care habits.
Dietary choices are a major part of the problem as well. Sugar-filled junk food is available in every store, gas station and restaurant, and many Americans don’t even know which foods are harmful. Letting the remnants of these foods – ingredients like sugar, corn syrup, and acid – remain on the teeth deteriorates their enamel and weakens them.
For good oral health, it’s crucial to limit your intake of the worst cavity-causers. Your body and oral health will be better for it.
5 Foods That Are Excellent For Your Teeth
Foods that are good for your teeth are more than just safe, innocuous options. Many of them, such as strawberries, actually have special ingredients that are designed to improve your teeth and brighten your smile. Some of the foods that made the list may surprise you, but ultimately, each offers a benefit for your overall oral health. Fortunately, many of these foods are healthy for your body as well.
Perfect as a high-protein snack or as a topping on parfaits or salads, almonds are healthy for both body and mouth. In addition to the fact that they’re one of the few foods with Omega-3’s and the healthy type of fat, almonds are high in calcium and low in sugar. Feel free to include about a ¼ cup with your next salad, breakfast or healthy dinner, and you’ll see benefits for your oral health.
2. Kale & Leafy Greens
Leafy greens are best known as the primary ingredient in salads, but they can be seen in the cuisines of various other cultures as well. For instance, cooked spinach and collard greens are prominent side dishes for millions of Americans. Whether you choose lettuce, kale or any of the numerous other types of leafy greens, remember that they have excellent benefits for your health and teeth.
The benefits of leafy greens are significant, and they include high amounts of vitamins and minerals. Among these is folic acid which is a potent type of B vitamin and calcium, which is the main building block of your teeth. However you consume your leafy greens, find a way to work them into your diet and your teeth will thank you.
Rich in protein and calcium, cheese has numerous positive benefits for your oral health. In fact, a study published by the Academy of General Dentistry shows that cheese has dental advantages far greater than expected. The study found that cheese actually raises the pH level of the mouth, thereby decreasing their chances of tooth decay.
4. Carrots and Celery
Carrots, celery, and other root vegetables have a unique property that makes them excellent for cleaning the teeth. The simple action of chewing on raw carrots serves as a toothbrush, providing a potent cleaning function for your teeth. Throw in the fact that root vegetables are rich in vitamins and nutrients and it’s clear that they should be a crucial part of a healthy diet.
5. Apples and Pears
As in the case with carrots, the action of eating an apple actually plays a role in cleaning the teeth. Specifically, the chewing process generates extra saliva in the mouth. Since saliva is a natural cleanser for the mouth and gums, this serves is a welcome boost for improved oral care.
5 Foods That Are Surprisingly Bad For Your Teeth
Not all foods that are bad for your teeth contain sugar. Some of the foods that are known to stain or damage your teeth may surprise you. Here are five that have a negative impact on your teeth in different ways:
A lunch or dinner dish that is often served spicy and with rice, curry is a favorite of many Americans. It’s not the sugar content in curry that’s harmful, but rather the yellow coloring. The same yellow coloring that makes curry unique can also lead to stained teeth. Overindulging in curry can cause your teeth to match its color, so it’s important to brush after enjoying your favorite curry dish.
As cucumbers that undergo a pickling process, it’s hard to believe that anything can be unhealthy about pickles. However, the same acidity that gives them their tangy flavor also eats away at your tooth enamel. Next time you indulge in pickles, remember to brush soon afterward so you preserve the outer layer of your teeth.
3. Fruit Juice
While it may seem that fruit juices would carry the same health properties as the fruit that made them, but that is often far from the truth. Although labels like “100% juice!” and “12 essential vitamins and minerals” frequently adorn the packages of most fruit juices, these suggestions hide the reality of store-bought fruit juice.
By their very nature, fruit juices are loaded with sugar. Surprisingly, some juices even pack more sugar than soda or energy drinks. Whenever the labels of a fruit juice catch your eye as a healthy alternative, double check the sugar content to ensure you’re not wreaking havoc on your teeth.
4. Alcoholic Beverages
It may seem obvious that cocktails which contain hard alcohol, like rum and coke, would be terrible for the teeth. There are dental problems that stem from other alcoholic beverages as well. For example, beer contains large amounts of acid which rapidly eats away at tooth enamel. Wine stains can leave a dark impression on your teeth. When indulging, try to remember the dental ramifications of the beverages you choose.
It’s rare to find a vegetable that is bad for the teeth, but beets are just that. When you consider how beets can be messy in general, leaving bright red residue on the table and shirts of those who enjoy them, it makes sense. That same stain-causing potential of beets is comparably bad for the teeth, so next time you enjoy beets, remember to brush shortly after.
Contact Dr. R. Younes Dental Care To Fix Your Dental Problems
Most American adults have cavities, and leaving them untreated can lead to far worse dental problems down the line. If you have questions about the best dietary choices for your oral health, our talented staff can help. Contact us today to begin treatment.