Many of us are aware of the health benefits of eating a balanced diet laden with fruit and vegetables and avoiding fatty foods, but have you ever stopped to think about how your diet impacts your oral health? The foods you eat have a significant influence on your teeth and gums, so here are some foods and drinks to avoid if you’re looking to keep your pearly whites in tip top condition:
Sadly, most of the delicious treats we look forward to indulging in after a long day at work are bad for the teeth. These sugar-rich delights increase the risk of decay and gum disease, as they contribute to erosion of the protective enamel. The frequency of eating sugary foods is actually more important than the quantity of sugar you eat, as sugar causes bacteria to produce acids, which soften and attack the enamel; if you constantly eat sugar, this means that your enamel is always under attack and it has no time to recover. Try to limit your intake of sugary foods and find healthier alternatives if you have a sweet tooth.
Many people assume that smoothies and fruit juice are healthy choices, but often, they are full of sugar; fruit juice is also very acidic, which is bad news for the enamel. Shop-bought drinks can contain the same amount of sugar as foods such as biscuits and doughnuts, so always read the labels, dilute fruit juice and prepare smoothies at home.
Starchy foods, such as bread, pasta and potatoes are great sources of energy, but they can be damaging for the teeth and gums, as the complex sugars are broken down into simple sugars. Avoid eating starchy foods between meals and try to stick to wholegrains, such as brown bread, rice and pasta.
If you have any questions about diet and oral health, our dentists and dental hygienists will be happy to help.
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