Eating Right For Your Dental Health
What we eat is significant to our overall health. General guidelines should include balance and moderation and should involve choices from the five major food groups
- Dairy [milk, yogurt, cheese]
- Meat [poultry, fish]
- Whole grain [breads, cereals]
What do we do to prevent this potential problem? Avoid having sugar in your mouth for long periods of time. Stay away from sucking candies and chewing gum [unless sugarless] and refrain from drinking soda pop regularly [unless diet]. Try to cut down on the number of snacks per day. If you must snack, substitute foods that most like but don't promote tooth decay. Examples are popcorn, pretzels, fruits, nuts, cheese, pizza and vegetables.
Consuming sugary foods with a meal or for dessert has a less detrimental effect, because increased salivary flow during meals helps to wash the food away. Also, it is usually nearer the time that most people will brush their teeth. Keeping this in mind, it is better for children to eat sweets at a time and place that allows them to brush soon afterwards.
A balanced diet is also important to keep your bones and gums healthy. Foods rich in vitamin C [citrus fruits and juices, leafy vegetable, potatoes], B12 [dairy, meat] and Folic Acid [spinach, broccoli] will help strengthen your gums and supporting soft tissue. Of course calcium [dairy, dark leafy vegetables] is necessary for the development and maintenance of strong teeth and bones. If you are lactose intolerant, calcium supplements are readily available.