Foods that are good for teeth:
- Cheese. For most of us Wisconsinites, it’s a relief to hear that cheese is good for our teeth. Cheese raises the pH in our mouths and lowers the risk of tooth decay. It’s thought that the chewing required to eat cheese increases saliva in the mouth. Cheese also contains calcium and protein, which are nutrients that strengthen tooth enamel. This makes cheese a delicious snack and a great way to end meals, as it can protect your teeth until you brush at bedtime.
- Yogurt. Like cheese, yogurt is rich in calcium and protein, making it a great team player in strengthening and contributing to the overall health of your teeth. The probiotics are good bacteria that benefit your gums. This occurs because the good bacteria crowd out the bacteria that lead to cavities. If you choose to substitute yogurt for other snacks, make sure you’re picking a healthy yogurt that is plain with no added or artificial sugars.
- Leafy Greens. Least surprising, leafy greens normally make their way on to every healthy food list. They’re chock-full of vitamins and minerals while being low in calories. Kale and spinach also contribute to great oral health. They’re high in calcium, which builds your teeth’s enamel.
- If you have trouble getting leafy greens into your or your child’s diet, add a handful of baby spinach to your next salad or throw some kale on a pizza. You can also try adding some greens to a smoothie, with fresh berries or other fruit.
- Apples. The ADA recommends staying away from sugars as a rule of thumb, but there are exceptions. In this case, fruits, like apples, may contain natural sugars but they also have water and fiber. The fibrous texture of the apple stimulates the gum tissue, which helps in protecting the mouth. Eating apples also cause saliva production, which washes away food particles and bacteria naturally. Apples cannot replace the effect of brushing your teeth, but it can tide you over until you get home or are able to brush your teeth next. Consider using apples to clean your mouth following a meal.
- Carrots. Like apples, carrots are crunchy and full of fiber, which contributes to saliva production and, in turn, washes away harmful bacteria and decreasing your risk of cavities. You can include carrots as a healthy snack, and kids can munch on them plain or with dip.
- Celery. Celery is often considered bland, watery, or even critiqued for the fibrous strings, but it’s these things that make celery so good for teeth. Like apples and carrots, celery scrubs away bacteria, reducing the risk of cavities and decay.
- Almonds. Almonds are good for your teeth because they’re a great source of calcium and protein while being low in sugar. If you include a quarter cup of almonds in your or your child’s lunch, you can work to prevent cavities and strengthen teeth. If you don’t enjoy almonds on their own, you can add a handful to a salad or incorporate them in a stir-fry.
The foods that are good for your teeth are also great for your over…