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Natural Health

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Natural Oral Health: 6 Foods and Nutrients for a Healthy Mouth

Most of us spend some time of the day taking care of our teeth. We brush twice a day, floss before going to bed, gargle and rinse with antiseptic mouthwashes, and make it a point to visit the dentist twice a year. For many, our mouths are the part of the bodies we look after the most.

We all learned how to look after our teeth as children, yet tooth decay remains a prominent problem. Why is it, that even with healthy dental habits, our teeth are still susceptible to bacteria that lead to tooth decay? The problem could be the types of foods you’re eating (or not eating) and the foods you should be eating.

young woman with nice smile eating salad
Photo by Adobe Stock/EpicStockMedia.

When we were younger, we’re told to avoid sugary foods because they can cause cavities. Now that we’re older, we know that beverages such as coffee and tea stain our teeth. Sticky foods, like cheese and other dairy products, can also attract bacteria in large swathes by providing a suitable atmosphere.

You would think that all foods would be bad for our teeth, however that isn’t true. There are foods that actually improve the health of your teeth; some can cleanse your mouth, while others can reduce the levels of acidity and prevent the buildup of plague.

Check out this list natural sources that will help keep your mouth and teeth healthy, some of which can match the claims of the toothpaste available in the market in equal measure!

Calcium- and Phosphorous-Rich Foods

Your teeth need a combination of calcium and phosphorous to strengthen the enamel. Consuming foods rich in these minerals will prevent your teeth from decaying. Dairy products such as yogurt, milk, hard-aged cheese, almonds and tofu all are good sources of calcium. Foods like pumpkin seeds, fish, red meat, egg and tofu are rich phosphorous.

Crunchy, Juicy Fruits and Veggies

When you chew on crunchy fruits and vegetables like apples or celery sticks, your mouth produces saliva. This production of saliva helps cleanse your teeth and neutralizes the bacteria that builds plague.

Chewing works like a cleansing mechanism when combined with crunchy, juicy foods. The crunchy foods combined with the saliva in the mouth gently scrub the surface of the teeth making them stronger & resoundingly healthier.

Vitamins C and D

Vitamin C found in foods such as bell peppers, citrus fruits, strawberries, kale and broccoli repairs blood vessels and reduces inflammation, which in turn stops your gums from swelling. Additionally, vitamin C is essential for the production of collagen, which prevents gum diseases such as periodontitis.

Vitamin D is essential for the growth of your bones and teeth because of its ability to absorb calcium. Egg yolk and fish are the best foods

Antioxidant-Rich Food

Antioxidants are required by your body for many reasons. They help you flush out the toxins that cause inflammation in the body. In the mouth, antioxidants fight bacteria and that cause the inflammation of gums and trigger the buildup of plague. Fruits such as apples, berries and grapes are an excellent of antioxidants.

Probiotics for a Healthy Mouth

Probiotics are referred to as good bacteria. Some research has found probiotics can cleanse the mouth of plague and other bacteria. Probiotics can be found in fermented foods such as yogurts, miso and kombucha.

Anthocyanin, Arginine and Polyphenols

Anthocyanin, arginine and polyphenols are all elements that protect your teeth and gums. Anthocyanin prevent plague from building up in the crevices between your teeth. Arginine and polyphenols prevent the formation of plague on the gum-line and the chances of cavities developing.

Anthocyanin can be found in foods like cherries, plums, eggplants and grapes. Foods such as meats, nuts and soy are the best sources of arginine. Cocoa, green and black tea, berries and flaxseeds are the best sources of polyphenols.

Healthy and well-cared-for teeth help create a positive image in the mind of others and, of course, they allow us to chew food more easily. Regularly including these foods and nutrients, in combination with good oral hygiene will ensure that your teeth and mouth are in top condition.