Ways your diet affects your oral health

You probably already know that the food you consume will always affect your body and this includes your oral health. What a lot of people do not seem to realise is most of the oral problems they face are a result of what they eat.

To avoid dental complications, you need to consume healthy foods that guarantee you strong and healthy teeth and gums.

Let’s look at some of the ways your diet has a toll on your oral health.

How does nutrition affect oral health?

How does nutrition affect oral health?

1. Lack of essential nutrients weakens your gums

When oral hygiene is mentioned, people naturally think of teeth. But most people focus on the care of their teeth and completely forget about their gums.

However, you need to take good care of your gums as well!  Weak gums are the number one reason for tooth loss among adults.

A well-balanced diet is essential in keeping your gums strong and healthy.

Foods that are associated with proper gum health are rich in Omega fatty acids, Vitamin B, and vitamin B12.

Regularly consuming food rich in simple or refined carbohydrates is not healthy for your gums.  This includes sugary foods, white grains and pastries.

2. Sugary food causes tooth decay

Foods with a lot of added sugars are the primary reason why tooth decay is so prevalent today, especially among kids. It’s also quite common among adults.

Sugary foods that can cause tooth decay include sweetened fruit drinks, cookies, sodas, and sweets. Hard sweets often cause broken teeth and chipped edges, as well as the eventual loss of teeth.

If you already lost a few teeth, you should consider getting dental implants and improving your oral health and diet. Implants are a great choice for missing teeth because they look and work like regular teeth. They are also long-lasting, sometimes lifelong, and don’t move around as you chew and talk like dentures.

Don’t risk losing any more teeth by making positive changes to your diet today.  A natural plant based diet which is low in junk food and sugary foods will help to maintain good oral health.

3. Too much acidic food erodes your enamel

You should watch your intake of certain citrus fruits because over time it can wear out your enamel. Eroded enamel increases the chances of your teeth decaying over time.

In a 2008 study that involved soaking pulled teeth in various citrus juices, lemon juice and grapefruit juice caused the most damage. Orange juice caused the least.

Of course we wouldn’t usually soak our teeth in juice for so long, but it’s a good reminder that acidic fruits need washing off our teeth and their consumption in juice form, in particular, should be limited.  Drink water immediately after consuming citrus fruits and skip that lemon slice in your water.

Besides citrus foods, chewing on really hard substances can also cause enamel erosion. Top on the list of hard elements you should avoid is ice.  Some people love to chew the ice out of their chilled beverages, but it can be really damaging to the enamel on your teeth, so leave it in your drink instead!

4. Some drinks will eventually stain your teeth

Other than drinking high-sugar drinks like fizzy pop, most of us cannot resist adding sugar in our other beverages like tea or coffee. Not only can the sugar cause decay to our teeth, but our favourite cup of coffee or tea will eventually discolour our teeth.

Caffeinated drinks are also known to dehydrate the mouth, drying the saliva you need to wash away food particles stuck in the mouth causing bad breath!

What we consume, and how often we consume, can really affect our oral health. If you want to improve your dental health then watch what you eat.  A healthy plant based diet is the secret to a healthy body weight, enough energy to last you throughout the day and healthy gums and teeth.

Related blog posts

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Eat these foods to fight bad breath

How to reduce your child’s sugar intake when they have a sweet tooth

The fascinating link between hormones and women’s oral health

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How does nutrition affect oral health?

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