Healthy teeth are essential for our overall health, both physically and mentally. But what makes for healthy teeth?
We all know the basics – brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily – but what about the foods we eat?
Studies have found that certain foods can help strengthen and protect our teeth against decay. We’ve put together a top 10 countdown of the best foods for teeth based on research from 2023.
From crunchy carrots to dairy products, there are lots of delicious snacks that can help keep your pearly whites healthy. So read on to find out which foods should be part of your regular diet!
See related: Top 10 Worst Foods for Your Teeth, 2023
Eating eggs in the morning is an easy way to give teeth the extra boost they need. They contain healthy fats and proteins that also protect against gum disease. For a tooth-friendly breakfast, try scrambled eggs, fried eggs, or a couple over-easy.
9. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is a great food for teeth due to its antibacterial properties. The medium-chain fatty acids found in coconut oil help to reduce harmful bacteria in the mouth that can cause cavities, gum disease, and bad breath (1).
Regular oil pulling with coconut oil can also help to reduce plaque and gingivitis. Additionally, using coconut oil as an alternative to commercial mouthwash can reduce the number of harmful bacteria in the mouth and help to maintain good oral hygiene.
8. Whole Grains
Whole grains are essential for strong and healthy teeth due to their complex carbohydrates that offer fewer digestible components for bacteria to feed on. These foods offer plenty of essential nutrients like calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus, which maintain strong teeth (2).
Whole grains also contain dietary fiber that reduces inflammation in the mouth, ultimately reducing the risk of tooth decay.
Engaging in a balanced diet with whole grain foods like oats, brown rice, quinoa, and whole wheat bread can improve oral health and lead to a brighter smile!
7. Apples and Pears
Apples and pears are teeth-friendly fruits thanks to their high fiber content that helps scrub away plaque and their hard texture that stimulates saliva production to neutralize mouth acids.
Unlike processed sugars in candy and soda, their natural sugar does not contribute to tooth decay (2).
Snacking on these fruits not only satisfies cravings but also reduces the risk of tooth decay and plaque buildup, making them a nutritious and delicious treat for maintaining dental health.
6. Fatty Fish
Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, and herring are great for teeth health because they have vital nutrients like protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and high levels of phosphorus, which strengthen enamel and prevent cavities (2).
The oils in fatty fish reduce oral inflammation, protect against gum disease, and stimulate saliva production, which neutralizes mouth acidity and washes away decaying food particles.
Eating fatty fish only a few times each week significantly reduces the risk of dental problems while also being a delicious addition to your diet.
5. Nourishing nuts
Almonds, macadamia nuts, cashews, and walnuts are rich in calcium, vitamin E, and magnesium, nutrients that strengthen enamel and promote overall oral health. They also contain healthy fats and have lower sugar levels compared to other nuts like peanuts and pistachios (2).
Eating a handful of nourishing nuts daily can help prevent cavities and other dental issues.
4. Lean proteins
Low glycemic index in lean beef, poultry, fish, eggs, and legumes contribute towards reducing plaque buildup and tooth decay. Lean proteins also have low sugar levels and keep bacteria from feasting on sugar; these are additional reasons why they’re natural cavity fighters (2).
Incorporating a few ounces of lean proteins daily into your diet can help maintain excellent oral health by preventing dental issues.
High in calcium, dairy products strengthen teeth enamel and protect against cavities and dental erosion.
Protein in dairy helps saliva production, neutralizing mouth acidity and ultimately preventing cavities.
2. Crunchy veggies
Crunchy vegetables like celery and carrots are great for teeth health.
Chewing on these vegetables stimulates saliva production, which helps wash away food particles and neutralize harmful oral acids that can lead to tooth decay and enamel erosion (3).
Such vegetables also contain fiber which helps to naturally clean teeth by strengthening gums.
Making these veggies a healthy snack go-to can help maintain optimal oral health and keep your teeth shining bright.
The number one best thing you can consume for your oral health is – WATER!
Not only does it help keep you hydrated, but it also helps to rinse away food particles and bacteria, keeping your mouth clean.
Additionally, water helps to stimulate saliva production. A dry mouth is one of the leading causes of bad breath, so keeping your mouth hydrated will help keep odor-causing bacteria at bay.
So make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your teeth healthy and cavity-free!
Eating the right foods can make a huge difference when it comes to preserving your oral health. By including the top 10 best foods for your teeth in your diet (and avoiding the top 10 worst), you can help protect against cavities, tooth decay, and other dental problems.
It’s important to remember that regular visits to your dentist are also important for keeping your teeth healthy.