March is National Nutritional Month, which makes it the perfect time to think about how your eating habits are affecting your health. While you are considering how your food choices are impacting your weight, your heart, your energy levels, and other aspects of your systemic health, you should also think about how what you eat can affect your smile. In this post, we’ll discuss some types of foods that can bolster both your oral and overall health.
It’s fairly common knowledge that calcium is essential for bone health, but it also plays a big role in keeping teeth strong and well-mineralized. Many foods are rich in calcium, but the ones that are most tooth-friendly have low amounts of sugar. Therefore, you should skip the extra-sweet yogurt and ice cream and opt for plain yogurt, cheese, and milk instead. If you cannot eat dairy, other good sources of calcium include almonds, spinach, sardines, and kale.
Calcium fortifies your teeth, but it cannot do its job properly without vitamin D, which helps your body to absorb calcium. Research also indicates that vitamin D may help to promote emotional health. To get more vitamin D into your diet, you can consume portobello mushrooms and fatty fish, both of which are natural sources of this important nutrient. Many foods that do not naturally contain vitamin D, such as breakfast cereal and milk, may be fortified with it.
There is also a non-nutritional way to get more vitamin D. If you spend 10 – 30 minutes in the midday sun a few days each week, your body may self-produce all of the vitamin D it needs.
After calcium, phosphorous is the most abundant mineral in the human body. It works alongside calcium to promote strong teeth and bones. You can add more phosphorous into your diet by boosting your intake of foods like eggs, pork, beef, cheese, and seafood. Vegans and vegetarians who are looking to bolster their phosphorous intake can do so with tofu, chickpeas, and beans.
Vitamin C is well-known for its immune-boosting and antioxidant properties. Research even indicates that individuals who do not get enough vitamin C are at a higher risk of gum disease. Vitamin C is present in many types of food. However, the most famous sources of this nutrient, citrus fruits, can damage your tooth enamel if you consume too much of them. Alternative sources of vitamin C include potatoes, apples, leafy greens, bell peppers, and strawberries.
Just like the rest of your body, your smile can thrive if you make smart nutritional choices. If you see room for improvement in your daily eating habits, now is the time to make the necessary changes!
About Our Practice
Pelican Landing Dental is a family friendly practice in Bonita Springs, Florida. We have four talented doctors on our team, all of whom are always happy to provide patients with practical tips to help them improve their oral health. If you would like to talk to them about how you can help your smile through nutrition, great oral hygiene habits, or other means, contact our office at 239-948-2111.