15 Feb Eat your way to a healthier smile
What you eat and drink on a daily basis has a huge impact on your oral health. So, we have a few tips here for you on how you can eat your way to a healthier smile:
- Cut down on sugar
It should come as no surprise that sugar is bad for your oral health. When the bacteria in your mouth break down the sugar in foods, this produces acid that attacks your teeth. This makes sugary foods one of the main culprits in tooth decay.
To help improve your oral health, why not try to keep track of how much of and how frequently you consume sugar during a day? The NHS recommends that adults consume no more than 30g of free sugars per day – the equivalent of roughly 7 sugar cubes.[i]
Sugar is in more foods and drinks than you would think. We all know sugar is in sweets and chocolates, but did you know that jars of pasta sauce and fruit smoothies are often also packed with sugar? Look at the labels on what you eat and take note of the sugar content. This way you can adjust your diet and find more tooth kind alternatives.
- Be careful with acidic food
Acidic foods and drink such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, fizzy drinks and alcohol are all detrimental to your oral health as the acid they contain can weaken the enamel on your teeth (the hard, protective coating). This, in turn, makes your teeth weaker, more likely to discolour and more vulnerable to decay.
Many fruits are very acidic, despite being nutritionally beneficial so can damage your teeth in the long term. One way to help prevent damage from acidic foods and drink is to consume them only at meal times. When you snack on these foods between meals, they can be more damaging as your teeth come under constant acid attack.
- Dairy to defend your teeth
Dairy produce such as milk, cheese and yoghurt are all beneficial to your oral health as the calcium and phosphorous they contain are two of the essential minerals for tooth health and maintenance.[ii]
Diary also helps to protect teeth against acid attacks as when eaten a protein called Casein which they contain coats your teeth forming a protective barrier against acid attack.[iii]
- Incorporate seafood into your diet
Seafood contains fluoride, which is a mineral often found in toothpaste as it helps protect against tooth decay.[iv]
- Don’t say no to veg!
Vegetables are naturally packed full of nutrients and minerals, many of which support your oral health. Green leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach and cabbage are particularly beneficial, as they contain calcium, phosphorous and a range of vitamins.
You should try to eat colourful vegetables like carrots, peppers and sweet potatoes. These foods are also rich in vitamins that can help support good oral health.
Ultimately, what you eat is important. By consuming a balanced diet and cutting down on sugary and acidic foods, you can ensure that what you eat is supporting a healthy smile.
If you’re interested in improving your smile. Please call 0117 9507949 and the City Bridge Dental Care team will book you a consultation appointment or visit our page.
[i] NHS. Sugar: the facts. Link: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/food-types/how-does-sugar-in-our-diet-affect-our-health/
[ii] Oral Health Foundation. Top Foods To Keep Your Dentist Happy. Link: https://www.dentalhealth.org/top-10-foods-to-keep-your-dentist-happy
[iii] Dairy Australia. The role of milk, cheese and yoghurt in dental health. Link: https://www.dairy.com.au/healthcare-professionals/dental-health
[iv] Oral Health Foundation. Top Foods To Keep Your Dentist Happy. Link: https://www.dentalhealth.org/top-10-foods-to-keep-your-dentist-happy