Did you know that your overall health could be improved by improving your oral health? There is overwhelming evidence that supports that oral health and overall health are connected. The amount and type of foods that you eat can affect your overall health and wellbeing.
Generally speaking, you should fill your diet with fresh, whole foods such as produce, nuts, seeds, lean meats, and whole grains. Avoid foods that contain artificial preservatives, artificial sweeteners, food coloring, and refined sugar and flour.
The following 10 foods are great for oral health (and your overall health):
- Kiwi: most fruit contains Vitamin C, but kiwis contain A LOT of Vitamin C, which helps support healthy gums.
- Cheese: the phosphate and calcium in cheese help balance the pH in the mouth, which in turn kills bacteria and preserves tooth enamel. Just make sure it’s organic!
- Celery: the crunch in celery forces you to chew more vigorously, which produces extra saliva, which neutralizes the bacteria that cause cavities. It also helps to massage gums and clean between the teeth.
- Green Tea: full of catechins (natural antioxidants), this beverage helps to kill the bacteria that cause plaque, gum disease, and cavities. It also slows down the growth of the bacteria that causes bad breath.
- Sesame Seeds: these tiny seeds are high in calcium, which helps to preserve the bone around the teeth and gums. They also help remove plaque and maintain strong tooth enamel.
- Onions: did you know that onions have antibacterial properties? Well, they do! Their powerful antibacterial sulfur compounds make them ideal for oral health.
- Shiitake Mushrooms: full of lentinan, a naturally occurring sugar that eliminates mouth bacteria, these mushrooms are great for oral health!
- Raisins: in addition to being a sweet and tasty snack, raisins have phytochemicals such as oleanolic acid that reduce the occurrence of two types of oral bacteria, which helps prevent cavities and gum disease.
- Sweet Potatoes: full of Vitamin A, sweet potatoes promote the healing of gum tissue and healthy tooth enamel formation. By the way, carrots, pumpkin, and broccoli are all high in Vitamin A, too!
- Water: you knew this one was coming, didn’t you? Water is essential to life. When it comes to oral health, it’s just as effective as mouthwash at rinsing stuck particles and residue off the teeth.