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Two of the most common illnesses today are gum disease and tooth decay, which means having a healthy smile begins with what you put in your mouth! Healthy eating habits not only nourish the body, but create a healthy environment for teeth and gums.

What Should You Avoid?

Let’s look at what to avoid in your diet. Acids created by oral bacteria can harm the hard tissues in the mouth which bring on dental caries and gum disease. Even having a weakened immune system because of an unhealthy diet can put you at risk for periodontal disease. When oral bacteria comes into contact with sugar, it creates acids that attack the teeth. Sugar is high in foods like candy, dried fruit, cakes and other sweet foods.

Over time, acids in drinks soften tooth enamel through repeated exposure. If you drink soda and canned teas throughout the day you can try sipping it through a straw to limit the exposure on your teeth. Rinse well with water after drinking to help restore balance. Also, if you drink your sweetened drinks with meals instead it can neutralize some of the damaging effects.

Saliva

Saliva works to balance the acids in your mouth, protecting hard and soft oral tissues. You can stimulate your saliva production by staying well-hydrated. Drinking water is an excellent choice as it doesn’t harm your teeth. Another good choice is unsweetened green tea, with its healthy antioxidants. Saliva can also be increased by chewing sugarless gum.

What should you eat?

Balance is key! Eat foods which include the recommended food groups, including grains, fruits, vegetables, meat and milk. For healthy teeth, bones and gums, aim for foods that supplies calcium, vitamin C and D.

–Eat yogurt, milk, cheese, soybeans, tofu with calcium, white beans, broccoli, almonds and leafy greens like kale, bok choy and collard greens to supply calcium which builds teeth and bones.

–Choose oranges, guava, bell peppers, grapefruit, pineapple, strawberries, broccoli, kale, kidney beans, sugar snap peas and tomatoes to supply vitamin C. This vitamin strengthens blood vessels and connective tissue in your jaw which anchors your teeth as well as reduces inflammation.

–Consume mackerel, wild salmon, sardines, herring, milk, soy milk, yogurt, and egg yolks to get your supply of Vitamin D. Vitamin D promotes healthy teeth and gums.

For a beautiful healthy smile, and well and stay hydrated! If you have any questions please call our friendly staff at 256-314-0676 today.