Diet and healthy teeth: 9 foods for good oral hygiene

healthy food and teeth

The relationship between a healthy diet and healthy teeth is a proven one. While sweets are not recommended to prevent tooth decay, there are certain foods and beverages that are best enjoyed on a daily basis. HELVIDENT presents 9 such foods and beverages which, thanks to their composition, help you maintain good oral hygiene. You'll be able to enjoy your meal with a beautiful smile. 

#1 Still Water

In a recent issue of its journal InfodentsThe Swiss Society of Dentists (SSO) recommends drinking water after every meal or snack. Every time we consume a food or drink, we increase the risk of acid attacks on tooth enamel. Drinking water helps to reduce the bacterial load in the mouth, produce more saliva and thus neutralize acids. Prefer lightly fluoridated water to prevent cavities. 

#2 Tea

Did you know that tea (green and black) is an ally for your oral health? That's why it's such a popular natural ingredient in toothpaste. Tea leaves release catechins that prevent the formation of plaque. They also contain fluoride, which helps enamel fight acid attack. With its antibacterial action, tea is also a good remedy for gingivitis and halitosis (bad breath).

#3 Fish and shellfish

Fish is a key ally in the relationship between diet and healthy teeth. The same goes for seafood in general. They contain omega-3 fatty acids, which are excellent for health. What's more, their flesh is rich in fluoride, which helps strengthen enamel. Salmon, for example, contains around 1.9 mg/100 g. Fluoride-iodized salt is also good for your teeth. 

#4 Cheese

Few people realize that cheese plays an important role in protecting teeth. With its calcium, phosphorus and casein content, it inhibits bacteria in the mouth and helps remineralize enamel. Eat cheeses with a high calcium content, such as Emmental, preferably at the end of a meal.

#5 Fruits and Vegetables

It's no secret that vegetables are rich in fiber, vitamins and minerals, all of which are excellent for general health. Don't hesitate to regularly chew into a raw carrot or apple to clean your teeth. Their crunchy texture rids the mouth of food residues and boosts saliva production. Enrich your diet with green vegetables such as spinach, parsley or kale. Cranberries, on the other hand, are invaluable for oral health. It contains specific antioxidants that prevent bacteria from attaching themselves to the enamel. Use fresh or dried. 

#6 Wholegrain rice, bread or pasta

Wholefoods do not contain simple sugars, which are responsible for the cavity formation. In fact, they are made up of complex sugars that help you feel full. So you're less tempted to nibble, and less likely to have acid attacks in your mouth. Choose bread, rice, pasta and wholegrain cereals. 

#7 Dark Chocolate  

Good news for chocolate lovers: cocoa is recognized for its beneficial effects on your teeth. The only condition is that you choose dark chocolate with a minimum cocoa content of 70 %. Three elements go into its composition: phosphates, polyphenols and fatty acids. Together, they offer optimum protection against acids, bacteria and dental erosion. 

#8 Pulses

Pulses also play an important role in the relationship between diet and healthy teeth. Like fish and shellfish, they are high in fluoride. Include chickpeas, split peas or dried beans in your weekly menu to help your teeth and bones remineralize.  

#9 Nuts and Seeds

These foods are rich in minerals that are essential for maintaining good health. good oral hygiene. Low in carbohydrates, they contain calcium and fluoride. Another advantage is that their hard texture encourages you to chew them. This produces more saliva, which helps neutralize acids. It's best to eat nuts in their natural state (without salt or sugar coatings). If you're feeling a little hungry, try a handful of hazelnuts, almonds or cashews.

While diet is essential to maintaining good oral hygiene, don't forget the basics of prophylaxis. Brush your teeth at least twice a day and visit your dentist regularly. Dental clinics HELVIDENT in Lausanne, Fribourg and Aigle have a complete team of professionals at your disposal.