Your diet directly affects your oral health. Think about it—your mouth is the first thing the food touches in your body! It makes sense that the kinds of foods we eat would be either beneficial or harmful to our smiles. If you’ve wondered which foods are helping and which are hurting, this list is for you. Here’s how nutritious foods can enhance your dental health and impress your dentist at your next check up!
Dark Leafy Greens
Get ready for vegetables! Dark leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and collard greens are highly beneficial for your smile as well as your body. These vegetables are high in vitamins and minerals such as calcium and folic acid, which may help combat gum disease.
How to get: Try as a side dish with each meal, add a handful to a smoothie, or top your next pizza!
Yogurt is not only high in calcium, but contains probiotics, which are healthy bacteria that help nourish teeth and gums and may even help reduce cavities. If you’re lactose intolerant, you can choose coconut milk yogurt or almond milk yogurt instead. Just be sure to choose unsweetened yogurts, as some yogurts can have more sugar than candy!
How to get: Try yogurt as your new breakfast food or as dessert with fresh fruit on top. Yogurt also makes a great snack!
No, we’re not talking about potato chips! These include fresh, raw foods such as apples, carrots, and celery. These crunchy, firm foods help your mouth produce more saliva, which helps balance your bacteria and protect teeth from cavities. These foods also help to actually clean your teeth by scrubbing them with their firm pieces.
How to get: These make excellent snacks and are so easy to take on the go! You can try apples with peanut butter and carrots and celery with hummus.
Although tea has a bad reputation for staining your teeth, green tea has actually been shown to be very beneficial for both teeth and gums. Its polyphenol content can help stop bad bacteria and reduce inflammation in the gums, meaning it may help fight gum disease.
How to get: Try green tea for breakfast instead of coffee, or enjoy iced in the afternoon with lunch!
Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, and even cashews are high in calcium and other trace minerals that nourish a healthy smile. These crunchy foods can also stimulate saliva production, making your mouth cleaner and healthier.
How to get: Nuts make an excellent snack and can also be used in salads and other dishes as a fun and interesting topping! You can help make your mouth a healthier place just by being choosy about what foods you eat.
These foods make the top of the list when it comes to nourishing your teeth and gums through your diet. By including more leafy greens, yogurt, green tea, and nuts in your diet along with crunchy vegetables and fruits for a snack can help your smile be brighter than ever!