|Eating healthier is a top goal for many of us. But did you know that the food choices you make also have an impact on your smile? Here are a few nutrition basics for a healthy smile. |
The Best Foods for Your Teeth
Dairy. Dairy products such as milk, yogurt and cheese are the most common sources of calcium, which is an essential mineral for healthy teeth. Calcium protects and strengthens the enamel on the outside of your teeth, which helps fight against decay.
Dark Leafy Greens. Dark green leafy vegetables are another great source of calcium. Some of the best choices include kale, spinach, collard greens and broccoli.
Crunchy Foods. Crunchy foods like apples, carrots and celery require a lot of chewing. This generates saliva, which neutralizes acids in the mouth and protects against gum disease and tooth decay.
Green Tea. Drinking green tea can protect against cavities, gum disease and bad breath. It may even lower your chance of developing oral cancer. Just remember to skip the sweeteners!
| The Worst Foods for Your Teeth |
Sticky Foods. Sticky foods like dried fruit and gummy worms can get stuck on and between your teeth, creating plaque that causes tooth decay. Avoid varieties that have added sugar or are sweetened with corn syrup. If you indulge, drink plenty of water and make sure to brush and floss 30 minutes afterward.
Starchy Foods. Starchy foods like bread, chips and pasta can get stuck between teeth and linger in the mouth. They then mix with bacteria to create acid that can lead to tooth decay.
Citrus. Too many acidic foods like citrus fruits can ruin tooth enamel, leading to tooth sensitivity and decay. Drink plenty of water after enjoying an orange or grapefruit and wait 30 minutes before brushing to avoid rubbing the acid against your enamel.
Sugary Drinks. Not only does soda contain high amounts of sugar, but it also contains its own acid, which erodes the enamel that protects your teeth. Drinks that are high in sugar, including sports drinks and fruit juice, can cause cavities to develop over time and can even damage composite fillings.