We’ve talked about foods that affect your oral health, but those discussions often boil down to the nutrients you get from those foods. Let’s take a closer look at those nutrients & exactly what foods provide them.
Incredibly important for bone health, calcium also helps to strengthen enamel, the outer layer of teeth, preventing decay from reaching the vulnerable inner layers. Dairy is the most well-known source of calcium, but you can also find it in fish (sardines & canned salmon), seeds, almonds, beans & beets. Plus, a variety of foods (cereals) & drinks (orange juice) are fortified with calcium.
In addition to aiding your digestive processes & promoting weight loss, fiber naturally cleans teeth by increasing saliva production to wash away debris & neutralize acids. Fiber is present in so many healthy foods, such as leafy greens, fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes & even popcorn.
Known for supporting eye health, Vitamin A also helps to strengthen enamel. Cheese, butter, fish & liver are excellent sources of Vitamin A, as well as sweet potato, spinach & cantaloupe. Also, some foods high in Vitamin A, like carrots, are hard or chewy, which helps support your jaw health by stimulating bone growth.
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential fats that human bodies don’t make on their own. Great for promoting heart health & reducing inflammation, they also help slow the build-up of plaque. Several types of fish, including salmon, chia seeds, flaxseeds & walnuts are good sources of omega-3s.
Best known for its presence in toothpastes, fluoride is a naturally occurring substance that helps prevent decay & strengthens enamel. Drink black & green teas for some natural fluoride, but be careful because those drinks can stain your teeth.
If you are interested in learning more about how what you eat affects your oral health, please ask us! We love sharing what we know with our patients.