The team at BPI Dental is not just here to look in your mouth and fix problems with your teeth. We can also offer advice and support to help you keep your whole body healthy. This all starts with what you eat.
Despite growing interest in healthy eating, we all enjoy the occasional bag of crisps or chocolate bar – we are only human after all! As long as we find a balance between the good stuff and the not-so-good stuff, there’s nothing wrong with the odd treat every now and again. Understanding which food and drinks come under which category is key, both for our general health and for the health of our teeth.
The good guys
Dairy items like cheese and yoghurt are high in calcium and protein, so they’re great for strengthening your bones and tooth enamel (the outer layer of your teeth).
Fibre-rich fruits and vegetables
Carrots, apples and leafy greens such as kale and spinach are high in fibre and can help to lower cholesterol and glucose levels. In the mouth, they promote saliva production, which in turn helps to restore minerals to your teeth and eradicate unwanted bacteria.
Green and black teas
Green and black teas that contain polyphenols can help to prevent the build up of oral bacteria that, if left alone, would produce acid that attacks enamel. For the rest of the body, green tea has been linked with improved brain function, fat loss and a lower risk of cancer.
The bad guys
You will already be aware of the risk of weight gain and the various associated health problems that can ensue if you eat too many sweets. They also contain refined sugar that lingers in the mouth and produces harmful acids. Chewy and sticky sweets such as toffee can also get stuck between the teeth and increase the risk of cavities.
If it’s fizzy, it’s not good for you. The high sugar content, plus the phosphoric and citric acids can be highly erosive on your teeth, and they are linked to an increased risk of diabetes, obesity and heart diseases.
Starchy foods such as white bread, crisps, biscuits, crackers and cakes contain carbohydrates that break down into sugar and create acids. They also tend to get stuck between and on the teeth, meaning your teeth could be under attack all day!
Acidic foods like oranges, lemons, tomatoes and grapefruit, can be cause for concern regarding erosion (wearing away) of the tooth enamel.
Advice tailored to you
While these lists are not exhaustive, they should give you a clearer indication of which foods and drinks affect your dental and general health. For more information, speak to your dentist or dental hygienist at BPI Dental who will be able to offer dietary advice specifically tailored to you.
Restoring your smile
At BPI Dental, we also offer an array of restorative treatments that can help to address the effects of tooth erosion (wearing down of the enamel) that may have already occurred due to an acidic or sugary diet. That means we can help give you back a dazzling smile and then offer the support and guidance you need to keep it for years to come. Just let us know if you’d like a consultation with one of our expert dentists.
In the meantime, try to reach for a healthy option when the next snack attack arrives – you only get one set of teeth!