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Top 5 Foods for a Healthy Mouth

Jun 12, 2014

By Margaret Isham

Millions of Americans know that many of the foods consumed today are harmful to our teeth, and recent studies found that poor nutrition can also increase the risk of oral cancer.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that processed foods and those high in sugar can lead to a wide array of general health issues. Heart attacks, strokes, hypertension, diabetes, and obesity are a few among the list.

In addition to these life threatening health concerns, excessive amounts of sugar and processed foods are damaging to our teeth and gums. This increases the cost of dental coverage due to the necessity of more frequent dental visits, and the need for more expensive procedures to undo the damage the unhealthy foods can cause.


Agent Straight-Talk and Dental Wire have both reported extensively on foods that can play a positive role in maintaining healthy teeth and gums. A recent press release by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics also noted a well rounded diet is directly correlated to good oral health.

Below is a listing of recommended foods from the American Dental Association and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to maintain superior oral health. 

TOP 5 FOODS FOR A HEALTHY MOUTH

1. KALE This dark leafy green vegetable is full of Vitamin A and C, and acts as an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory. Antioxidants help protect your mouth against a variety of oral cancers while anti-inflammatory properties help increase the immune response of soft oral tissue in the mouth.

Not sure what to do with this veggie? Try sautéing kale in coconut oil and adding dried cranberries to add natural sweetness to this superfood.

2. MILK Milk is not only important for bone structure, but for tooth structure as well. The high levels of calcium and vitamin D found in milk are essential for the maintenance of jaw bone density and the physical well being of your teeth. The recommended serving size is one cup of milk per day.

Don’t like drinking milk? Low-fat yogurt is a comparable substitute.

3. SALMON The high protein in salmon helps our mouth fight off infection and increase wound healing. The omega-3 fatty acids found in this fish also help with this process. Seafood with similar health benefits includes cod, sea bass, and tilapia. 

Does your salmon taste dried out? Try baking your salmon in parchment paper.  This helps lock in moisture, giving you a noticeable and delicious difference in taste.

4. QUINOA  Not only is quinoa a good source of protein, it is also high in calcium and magnesium. This combination of nutrients makes quinoa an excellent choice for the health of your mouth and teeth.

Not excited by quinoa? Add lime juice, mango, and cilantro for a zesty chilled quinoa salad.

5. WATER It may seem like a no brainer, but the benefits of drinking water is critical for oral health. Drinking water after eating a sugary or acidic food helps wash away the remaining debris that clings to teeth and leads to tooth decay.

 Set a daily reminder on your smart phone to encourage yourself to drink more water and less soda.

Sources: cdc.gov, eatright.org, colgate.com, ada.org
Photo source: himachaldental.wordpress.com


Copyright 2014, Bloom Insurance Agency, LLC   


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