When it comes to caring for our teeth, there are many oral practices that come to mind. These need to be incorporated as daily habits if one wishes to keep their teeth and gums healthy and prevent tooth decay or gum diseases. However, that is not all that one can do for their teeth. Food has a vital role to play for helping to strengthen our gums and teeth and to fight decay and diseases from coming on. In general, food that is acidic is not great for the teeth as the enamel is weakened as a result. Again, food items with distinct vitamins and mineral groups help to fortify the tooth and the gums. The right kind of diet and the ideal foods for tooth health are enumerated below.
There are many studies that have proven that sugar free gum can help to improve the dental health.
• If one chews gum it cleans the teeth by stimulating the production of saliva.
• The saliva in turn washes away the acids that are produced inside the mouth by bacteria.
• Saliva contains calcium and phosphate and that can help to strengthen the bones in the teeth.
• Gum also helps to scrub the teeth and strengthen the jaws.
After one finishes a meal one can use sugar free gum to avoid the build up of extra sugar in the blood stream.
For maintaining good oral health one needs to keep themselves hydrated.
• Water in the plain form is known to wash away toxins, and increases the saliva content which consists of essential minerals.
• Small food particles are washed away from the teeth which can lodge in between the teeth and cause problems.
• The gums are kept hydrated by water and it helps to prevent decay of the tooth enamel.
• Tap water is known to contain fluoride which is a mineral that protects the tooth against erosion.
Thus, washing the mouth with tap water after every meal and drinking lots of water will keep the gums and teeth healthy.
Cheese is known to be great for teeth health. It is also another food that helps to generate saliva.
• The phosphate and calcium content in the cheese helps to neutralize the acids in the mouth.
• If one is prone to cavities they can eat a small piece of cheese after every meal which will help to prevent tooth decay.
Cheddar, Swiss, provolone, ricotta cheese of the skim variety are some of the many options that one has in this category.
Milk, similar to cheese, is a dairy product which is rich in vitamin D as well as in phosphates and calcium.
• Milk helps the teeth and the bones to be strong.
• If one drinks milk regularly they will augment the process of the tooth enamel being repaired and strengthened.
• If one is allergic to milk they can drink soy milk as well. This replacement of milk is ideal for those who are lactose intolerant and is rich in calcium content.
• Nowadays skim milk fortified with the necessary nutrients is available for those who are diet conscious.
Tea in both the green and the black form are great for teeth health.
• There are polyphenols included in the tea which works on bacteria that can cause plaque.
• Such compounds can suppress or kill the bacteria and thus, the tooth attacks are prevented.
• Even for preventing cavity formation green or black tea is ideal.
When one drinks one or two cups of tea regularly, they need to add honey instead of sugar in their tea. If one chooses to consume green tea there are added benefits to overall health as well.
One can consume variety of nuts which offer a wide range of vitamins and minerals that are necessary for fortifying the teeth and gums.
• Peanuts rich in vitamin D and calcium.
• Almonds are known to contain calcium in high levels.
• Cashew nuts help to get the saliva in the mouth.
• Walnuts have rich amount of fiber, iron, magnesium, folic acid, vitamins B6 and E, zinc and potassium which are great for teeth health.
One needs to chew the nuts carefully in order to ensure that the teeth enamel is protected and it is not chipped off accidentally.
When one consumes yoghurt regularly they are sure to support their dental health. It is best used or consumed in the plain version and in non fat forms.
• Yoghurt is a good source of protein as well as calcium.
• It also helps one to lose weight if one chooses to consume yoghurt which is low in fat and sugar.
• Yoghurt can be consumed with fresh fruits or berries to increase the nutrition quotient.
It could also be made into a smoothie. That makes yoghurt a great diet food and good for the teeth at the same time.
It is known that dark chocolate contains cocoa which in turn contains tannin.
• Tanin plays a vital role in reducing tooth erosion and decay.
• It also helps to combat inflammation of gums.
• The cocoa reduces the growth of plaque as well as helps to reduce the production of acids in the mouth.
• Dark chocolate helps to promote blood circulation in the gums.
• There are many antioxidants that it contains which have disease fighting properties.
Thus, one can enjoy dark chocolate everyday in a guilt free manner.
If you choose to have a fruit which is acidic but good for the teeth, take up oranges.
• This fruit contains vitamin C and D as well as calcium. These nutrients help to promote good health in one’s teeth.
• The orange juice helps to eliminate harmful bacteria in the mouth and prevents tooth decay.
Due to the acidic nature of the fruit, on could wash off their mouth after consuming oranges. Other citrus fruits should be consumed in a similar manner.
It is not without reason that the saying goes that an apple a day keeps the doctor away.
• It is known that eating apples helps to increase the saliva in the mouth.
• It prevents the buildup of cavity and it scrubs the teeth surface naturally in the act of chewing.
• The vitamins and minerals that it contains are magnesium, iron, zinc, manganese, calcium as well as vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, K, E and C.
• Eating an apple after dinner helps to cleanse the teeth and keep it healthy.
Researchers have found that, licorice, which is an ancient Chinese herb, is a major fighting agent in preventing cavities as well as plaque. One needs to get the licorice which comes without sugar. Do not be fooled into buying licorice which is mainly candy in disguise combined with small amount of licorice and anise. It is best to get licorice from an Italian deli.
• The antibacterial properties of licorice are many.
• It is a great way to freshen the breath naturally.
It is best to consume licorice in small amounts and the lighter shades only.
If you wish to strengthen your teeth and bones, try bone broth that is actually made from bones and leftover meat. It is known as a superfood across the world. The calcium rich bone broth along with vital minerals and collagen are great for fortifying the nails, bones, teeth as well as hair.
• Meat and bones are boiled in water for 30 to 45 minutes till the juices of the bones and meat come out
• Bone broth should be made at home ideally with essential herbs thrown in for flavors and added nutrition.
• After boiling the concoction has to be strained to remove the bone and meat residue
One can drink it warm or cold or use it in cooking beans or grains. As soup or stew also bone broth is great. It can be prepared and preserved in the freezer for later use.
If you are okay to consume organ meat, you can consume liver.
• Liver of the healthy animals contain vitamins A and D which can act as antioxidants to prevent gum diseases as well as reduce the chances of dental decay.
• It is easily obtained at the meat shops and one can make savory dishes out of chicken or lamb liver.
• Vitamin D is a vital vitamin found in this food item which increases the ability of the body to calcify as well as mineralize the teeth and the bones.
If you are not ready to experiment with liver of animals in your diet, you could still gain the same benefits by taking cod liver supplements.
• There are liver capsules fortified with vitamins found in many health shops and one can even order them online.
• The cod liver oil might be bad to taste but the vitamins A and D that they contain along with omega 3 fatty acids ensure that teeth and bones are fortified.
Mushrooms are great for tooth health as well.
• This fungi group is a natural source vitamin D.
• It helps in the absorption of calcium from the bloodstream which strengthens teeth.
• Shiitake mushrooms are wonderful for lowering plaque buildup a well.
Suffering from cavities? Fear tooth decay with age? These are common problems faced by many. With the help of the super foods mentioned above, teeth and gum health can be preserved.