Written By Emma Sturgis / Reviewed By Ray Spotts
The popular saying “you are what you eat” could not be any more accurate for the teeth. Many tasty and supposedly healthy foods and drinks can cause plaque – a sticky film that forms when bacteria in the mouth break down carbohydrates by releasing acids. Plaque not only looks unsightly but also contributes to tooth decay and gum disease immensely.
Frequently eating sugar-rich foods encourages the bacteria in the mouth to release acids that gradually break down the enamel, causing cavities. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), dental caries represent the most common chronic disease among children and adolescents aged six to 19.
Besides the typical preventative dental care practices - brushing, flossing, and regular dental visits - you can increase your teeth’s longevity and vitality by following a healthy diet and avoiding these four foods.
It should come as no surprise that candy is harmful to your teeth. Sour candy, in particular, is harsher on the teeth due to the cocktail of acids that give it its distinct sour taste. Additionally, since most sour candies are chewy, the corrosive elements tend to stick on the teeth much longer than regular candy, causing far more damage.
While it is inadvisable to consume candy every day, grab yourself some chocolate next time you get an intense sweet craving. Chocolate is easier to chew, may not stick to your teeth as much as sour candy and is easy to wash away.
As refreshing as it may be, soda offers little to no nutritional value, even if it has the word “diet” inscribed on the label. Recent research reveals that frequently drinking acidic carbonated beverages, especially soda, could cause as much dental erosion as crack cocaine or methamphetamine.
Soda creates a conducive environment for oral bacteria to flourish and produce more enamel-corroding acid. To avoid causing even more damage, never brush your teeth shortly after drinking soda, as it could accelerate the decay.
Many citrus fruits and juices, including orange, lemon, lime, and grapefruit, are tasty and rich in vitamin C. However, that is not to say they are benign as far as teeth are concerned.
Citrus fruits and juices are very acidic and likely to corrode the enamel given enough exposure. If you would like to keep your teeth safe without forgoing the antioxidant and vitamin-rich citrus fruits, consume them in moderation and rinse your mouth with water shortly after.
Like refined starches, e.g., bread and pastries, potato chips get broken down into sugar by saliva in the mouth, inevitably feeding the bad oral bacteria. And since one potato chip is never enough, the acid produced after downing a bag of chips can be quite unbearable for your teeth.
Good oral hygiene and a nutritious diet can go a long way in preventing plaque formation, gum disease, and tooth decay. By avoiding these four foods and practicing proper oral hygiene, you can preserve your smile’s vitality for years to come.
Looking for a 100% all-natural liquid tooth oil and mouth rinse? Check out OraMD Original Strength and OraMD Extra Strength. Subscribe to our Trusted Health Club newsletter for more information about natural living tips, natural health, oral health and skincare. If you are looking for more health resources check out the Trusted Health Resources list.
Emma Sturgis is a freelance writer based out of Boston, Mass. She writes most often on health and education. When not writing, she enjoys reading and watching film noir. Say hi on Twitter @EmmaSturgis2
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.