It’s true what they say, you are what you eat and nowhere is that more true than your teeth! Yep, the difference between a load of painful fillings and a pristine smile may very well lie in your diet.
On lists like this, I’m supposed to tell you what not to eat — cut out sugar, quit drinking carbonated drinks, eliminate alc*hol, avoid citrus, that sort of thing — but I like to do things a little differently.
There’s a load of foods out there that actually help your teeth stay healthy and I think it’s a shame you never hear about them.
In this blog, I’m going to talk you through 9 foods that help stave off cavities, freshen your breath and whiten your teeth. Most of them even taste pretty good! So go fetch your shopping list and let’s get your teeth sparkling again!
What do you think of when I say healthy food? Is it, by any chance, a huge bowl of leafy greens?
Leafy greens like spinach, kale, lettuce and cabbage have been the king of healthy eating for a long time — although they’re more traditionally linked to your waistline than your molars!
Well, it turns out that leafy greens are pretty good for your teeth too. They’re packed full of vitamins and minerals and are also super low in calories. Basically, leafy greens are a wonder food!
Apples are one of, if not the, most maligned fruits. The anti-apple crowd will tell you that the average size apple contains a whopping 23g of sugar — around two-thirds the amount in a can of Coca-Cola!
Something that sugary can’t be good for your teeth, right?
Wrong! Apples are actually pretty good for your teeth and here’s why. They’re packed full of water and eating one promotes saliva production, which helps clean excess food from your mouth They are also full of fibre, which stimulates the gums and keeps them healthy.
So, next time someone tells you apples are bad for you, you know what to tell them.
Good news for any cheese board fans out there, eating cheese is great for your teeth!
A recent study in General Dentistry showed that people who ate cheese had a higher pH level in their mouth and ultimately had a lower risk of tooth decay. Time to go buy some gouda and put it to the test, I think!
Strawberries don’t just look beautiful, they help keep your pearly whites fresh, clean and strong too.
Why strawberries are so good for your teeth is a long story but the short version is this. They’re packed with antioxidants, stuffed with vitamin C, capable of naturally exfoliating your mouth with malic acid and they help remove tartar.
Yep, the strawberry is definitely the king of berries when it comes to your oral health!
I think it’s fair to say that there’s not a lot of culinary love for the humble stick of celery. After all, its bland, watery taste is not the sort to set your tastebuds alight!
Okay, enough celery-bashing.
While it’s not the tastiest treat, celery can more than hold its own in the dentist chair. The stringy strands that make up celery work a little like a toothbrush, scraping food off your teeth and keeping your mouth cleaner.
Yoghurt is one of the more ‘traditional’ entries on this list as it’s full of full of calcium and protein, which are both essential for healthy teeth.
It’s not only your teeth that yoghurt helps, though. The good bacteria in yoghurt helps displace the bad stuff and keep your mouth free of cavities.
Finally, if you do choose to add more yoghurt to your diet, go for a brand with no added sugar. Not only does it taste better but your teeth will thank you even more.
Carrots are good for your vision, help prevent infection and stave off heart disease. As far as foods go, they are really rather excellent.
While that’s all great, it’s what carrots do to your teeth that interests me. And it’s good news on that front as munching on a few carrot batons at the end of a meal helps boost saliva production, which helps wash any remaining food out your mouth.
Almonds are one of the least well known tooth-friendly foods and yet they’re one of the best!
A fantastic source of both calcium and protein, almonds are offer all the benefits we talked about earlier with yoghurt.
Okay, this last tip probably isn’t going to revolutionise your life but it definitely deserves a mention.
Drinking water is unbelievably important to your oral health. It helps wash away food, it keeps your mouth clean and it keeps your mouth hydrated — all things that promote healthier teeth. So go refill that glass and get drinking!