5 foods that are great for your oral health

Posted By: manager

Published on Sep 01, 2019

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We all know that sugary drinks and highly acidic foods are bad for our oral health, because they create an environment that accelerates plaque growth and tooth decay. But did you know that some foods are actually highly beneficial to the health of your teeth and gums? Here are the top 5 things to eat to help improve your oral health and keep that winning smile!

Number 1: black tea fights bacteria

When thinking of drinks that are good for your oral health, it’s usually only water that springs to mind. Most drinks other than water, for example fruit juices, are harmful because of the sugars they leave behind in the mouth. These sugars are what feeds the bacteria that causes so many oral health issues, including bad breath and tooth decay. 

But one drink that is good for your oral health is Black Tea! Black tea contain polyphenols, which are compounds that slow the growth of bacteria in the mouth. A study conducted at the University of Chicago found a significant reduction in plaque build-up among the group who consumed black tea over those who consumed only water. Another study found that black tea also suppresses bacteria’s ability to create the foul smelling compounds that lead to bad breath. So put the kettle on and have another cup, just don’t add any sugar!

Number 2: raisins

These little guys may seem like that are too sweet to be doing your teeth any favours, but this is not the case. Raisins are naturally sweet, so don’t need any sucralose added to them to be delicious. While they are high in natural sugar content, this is offset by other compounds that they contain. Some of the compounds found in raisins are phytochemicals which can kill plaque bacteria, the main cause of cavities. Other compounds found in raisins may also affect the growth rates of bacteria that cause gum disease. For these reasons raisins make a great snack, but remember to eat them in moderation, because despite these benefits, they are still high in natural sugar. 

Number 3: cheese

Researchers have recently found a connection between eating cheese and lowered acidity in the mouth. Because plaque thrives in an acidic environment, lowering the acidity of your mouth is a good thing. The study compared eating cheese to drinking sugar-free yogurt and drinking a glass of milk. The results showed that while the yogurt and milk drinkers showed no change in acidity, the cheese eating group had a significant drop for some time after eating. Cheese also contains calcium which is needed for healthy teeth and gums.

Number 4: apples

We have all heard the old saying ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ but eating this crunchy fruit might just ward off your dentist as well. Crunchy foods that take a lot of chewing produce lots of saliva, which washes away the harmful bacteria from the mouth, keeping things nice and clean. Because the tough skin on apples scrapes over the teeth as you chem them, they also have an abrasive cleaning effect. This makes a nice crunchy apple the perfect way to end a meal when you can’t brush your teeth immediately afterwards. 

Number 5: the old classic, milk

This will come as no surprise to most people. It has been well known for a long time that the high calcium content in milk is good for your teeth and bones. But milk has other benefits to your oral health beyond the calcium and minerals it contains. Like cheese, milk also lowers the acidity of your mouth, making it a less desirable environment for harmful bacteria. Drinking a glass of milk after a meal is a great way to lower the acidity of your mouth and inhibit bacterial growth, and as a bonus it tastes great. Just be careful to not allow the milk to sit in your mouth for too long, and always brush your teeth and swish water in your mouth before bed. 

Add these 5 foods to your grocery list and your mouth will thank you with healthy gums and a dazzling smile. If you have any questions about how your diet affects your oral health, talk to your dentist, they will be able to give you all the information you need to keep your smile bright and healthy.