6 Dietary recommendations to improve your oral health

The caring team at Gardner Dental Group likely already told you that daily brushing and flossing—combined with a twice-yearly teeth cleaning with your Burlington family dentist—is essential for your oral health. But did you know that your diet also plays a critical role in the condition of your teeth? In fact, what you eat—or don’t eat—can play a big part in determining whether or not you develop tooth decay, periodontal disease or other oral health issues.

1. Eat foods rich in calcium and phosphorous
Enamel—the protective outer layer of your teeth—requires the minerals calcium and phosphorous to be at its strongest and most resilient. Ensure your diet is rich in these components and your teeth are likely to remain cavity-free.

  • Sources of calcium include yoghurt, hard cheeses, milk, almonds, sesame seeds, tofu, and seafood
  • Sources of phosphorous include eggs, nuts, seeds, red meat, and tofu

2. Eat foods rich in vitamin C
Vitamin C plays a critical role in your body’s production of collagen, a protein that helps your gums defend against the bacteria that cause periodontal disease. Significant amounts of vitamin C can be found in a variety of fruits and vegetables, including oranges, bell peppers, kiwis, strawberries, broccoli and kale.

3. Eat naturally crunchy foods
Apples, celery, carrots and cucumbers are among some of the best foods around for your chompers. Their high water content ensures your teeth have minimal contact with decay-causing sugars while the abrasive chewing action has the benefit of gently scrubbing away loose bits of plaque. Eating crunchy foods also encourages saliva production, which further helps to clean your teeth.

4. Drink lots of water
Staying hydrated encourages saliva production, which is your mouth’s best defence against tooth decay. Saliva contains proteins and minerals that naturally fight off plaque. Drinking eight to ten cups of water every day will ensure you’re sufficiently hydrated.

5. Get your daily dose of vitamin D

Vitamin D helps your body to absorb calcium—the mineral most crucial to having strong bones and teeth. In the summer, get your daily dose from 10 to 20 minutes of exposure to direct sunlight, and in the winter, take a supplement or regularly eat foods high in vitamin D such as fatty fish, egg yolks and cod liver oil.

6. Reduce your intake of sugar-laden foods
Cookies, chips, candies, crackers and soda pop are high in sugar, and as a consequence consuming an abundance of such foods and beverages can play havoc with your oral health. Omit or reduce your intake of sugary items to decrease the likelihood of developing cavities.

A diet your Burlington family dentist can get behind
Not only will you improve your oral health by following these dietary recommendations, but your overall well-being is likely to be impacted for the better as well. If you have any questions about these recommendations or wish to make an appointment with our dentist, contact us at our Burlington dental office today.

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