Did you make a New Year’s resolution to eat healthier this year? Whether you want to lose weight or simply improve your diet, there are many benefits to following a healthier diet – including a healthier smile.
At Carmichael Dental Care, we are passionate about helping our patients. A healthy mouth is an essential part of good overall health. Continue reading to learn more about how you can enhance your smile by modifying your diet. One key change that will really benefit your smile is reducing the amount of sugar in your diet.
Don’t Worry Too Much About Sugar in Fruit
Many of the same foods that are known to be good for your body are also good for your teeth. Foods like cheese, lean meats, milk, green vegetables, and nuts contain calcium and phosphorous, which is needed to re-mineralize teeth. Basically, these minerals help strengthen your tooth enamel after it has been weakened by acids.
If you are concerned about the sugar in fruit, don’t be! Natural sugars found in fruit are far less harmful than those in candy and sweets. Still, some fruits are more acidic than others. Your best bet is to enjoy citrus fruits in moderation and instead choose crunchy fruits with high water content, like apples and pears.
Drink Water to Limit Sugar in Your Diet
Water is the best thing you can drink, for your teeth and the rest of your body. Fluoridated water is especially good for clean, healthy teeth. Other guilt-free beverages that are good for your teeth and body include milk and unsweetened tea.
As much as possible, you want to limit the number of sugary drinks you consume. That includes soft drinks, lemonade, and coffee or tea with added sugar. When you do have a soft drink or other sugary beverage, avoid day-long sipping. Sipping on a sugary drink over the course of a day exposes your teeth to harmful acids that can contribute to tooth decay.
Beware of Hidden Sugar in Your Diet
Whenever possible, choose the most natural foods possible. For foods not found in the produce section, always read the nutrition label. Even seemingly healthy foods like dried fruit and low-calorie or fat-free snacks are loaded with sugar and artificial sweeteners.
Items labeled “sugar-free” are often loaded with other natural sweeteners instead of sugar. Read the ingredient list and look for honey, evaporated cane sugar, molasses, fructose, barley malt, or rice syrup. Like other kinds of sugar in your diet, you’ll want to avoid consuming too many foods with these natural sweeteners. They can be just as harmful to your teeth as regular sugar.
If you are concerned about your teeth or would like more advice on modifying your diet, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Our Montgomery, AL team can provide you with all the information you need to improve your diet and ensure you are eating foods that will help your teeth instead of harming them.