fitting family dental visits into a crazy schedule

3 Dietary Tips That Help Fight Tooth Decay

by Andre Daniels

Have you ever heard the phrase "you are what you eat"? While that adage may not be strictly true, it does carry some merit. What you eat may not define you, but it has a large impact on your health. Eating a nutrient-dense diet is one of the key components to living a healthy lifestyle. What you eat also has a great effect on your oral health. Beyond going to the dentist and carrying out a good oral hygiene regimen, you should also take certain foods into consideration that help keep your smile white. Here are three dietary tips that help fight tooth decay.

Drink more water, especially after you eat a meal or a snack.

Water is one of the most precious resources on the planet. Staying hydrated is definitely good for you, but drinking water can also help you fight the damaging effects of tooth decay. Drink a glass of water after you finish a meal or a snack, especially if you have been eating or drinking acidic and sugary foods and beverages. Water helps to wash away damaging sugar and acid particles that bond with bacteria in your mouth to form plaque. Drinking water immediately after you eat cuts down the time that these particles have to bond with the bad bacteria. 

Crunchy fruits and vegetables are like tiny toothbrushes. 

Fruits and vegetables are not only an integral part of a healthy diet; they also act as tiny toothbrushes. Crunchy foods that require a lot of chewing help to stimulate saliva production. Increased saliva bathes your teeth and helps to remove food particles from between your teeth and gums, reducing your incidence of tooth decay. You should definitely consider eating an apple or a pear the next time you are craving something sweet; the sugars in those fruits calm your sweet tooth and the high water content helps dilute the effects of their sugars. 

Dairy products provide versatility and help build up your teeth.

Dairy products such as milk, cheese, and yogurt are great for your teeth. They are high in calcium and phosphorus; these two minerals help to rebuild the minerals you lose as a result of tooth decay. Dairy products also act as buffers against acids in your foods. Acids in your foods break down your tooth enamel, leading to yellowing and weakening of the tooth. Eating dairy helps to fight those negative effects while helping to fortify your teeth.