Not only do the foods you eat affect your body, they also affect your teeth as they pass through your mouth and get chewed. Sugary, sticky, and acidic foods are the biggest culprits, but what if other foods actually cleaned and strengthened your teeth? Medical researchers at the Yale School of Medicine wrote:
“When you drink and munch starchy or sugary foods, you’re not only feeding yourself, you’re feeding the plaque that can cause havoc in your mouth … When sugars or starches in your mouth come in contact with plaque, the acids that result can attack teeth for 20 minutes or more after you finish eating. Repeated attacks can break down the hard enamel on the surface of teeth, leading to tooth decay. Plaque also produces toxins that attack the gums and bone supporting the teeth.”
Although there is no substitute for proper dental hygiene, there are some natural foods that can promote healthy teeth. These are some of the healthiest foods that work double duty on both your body and your teeth.
Dairy products, like yogurt, milk and cheese, provide teeth with calcium and phosphorus, thereby protecting tooth enamel. Studies have shown that natural dairy products can re-mineralize teeth, that is redeposit minerals in tooth enamel after its been removed by harmful acids. Cheese is a great choice because it’s high in calcium and low in acid and sugar.
Firm & Crunchy Fruits and Vegetables
Stock up on fresh, raw fruits and vegetables to boost you dental health. Apples and pears are examples of firm, crunchy fruits that have high water content to dilute the effects of the sugars in them. These fruits also stimulate the flow of saliva, helping to protect the teeth from acid and decay. Celery is a great option because the fibrous strands naturally clean teeth.
One of the healthiest (and easiest!) beverages you can drink for dental health is tap water. Researchers at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research stated, “67% of the United States population served by public water supplies drink water with optimal fluoride levels for preventing decay.” Just be aware that the fluoride may not be too healthy for the rest of your body. While you may have preserved your teeth with fluoride, you may be affecting the toxicity of the the rest of your body. Green tea has shown to lower the acidity of saliva and dental plaque, thereby helping prevent cavities. It also has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that promote gum health and prevent bad breath.
Supplements That May Promote Dental Health
- Vitamin D
- Coconut oil
- Tea tree oil
- Sesame oil
- Fish oil – try our Omega 3+ Shark Liver Oil
Ingredients to Look for in Natural Toothpaste
- Calcium carbonate – cleans teeth
- Baking soda – whitens teeth
- Organic aloe vera juice – washes and soothes gums
- Tea tree oil – promotes cleanliness after brushing
- Natural toothpaste brand recommendations from Good Housekeeping magazine