Surprising Foods to Boost Oral Health

Our patients know all about great nutrition. They know that eating well not only makes you look and feel good, but diet is one of the best forms of preventative care out there– for your whole body as well as your mouth!

There’s a few foods that we’d like to highlight because they provide an extra-rich source of nutrients that fit oral health needs in particular. If you’re interested in making a conscious effort to support oral health through nutrition, check out these fantastic foods:

Cashew nuts

Cashews are one of the most popular nuts on the shelf– their delicious, buttery flavor is unmistakable! These nuts from South America contain 5g of protein per ounce, and are high in phosphorus– an essential mineral for rebuilding tooth enamel. Cashews have a lower fat content than other nuts and a higher return on vitamins and minerals per fat gram. For healthier eating that also lets you enjoy the naked deliciousness of cashews, buy the raw, unsalted variety.

Onions

No one will argue: raw onion is a pretty potent food. But that potency has an antibacterial bent! Raw onions have powerful antibacterial qualities, killing several strains of cavity causing bacteria in your mouth when you chew a slice for 2-3 minutes. In addition to wiping out bacteria, onions also pack a nutritional punch your mouth will love: high levels of calcium and phosphorus for health dental enamel. And you don’t have to eat onions all day; just add a few to your sandwich or salad!

Salmon

This super seafood is high in poly-unsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) which have been shown to prevent gum disease. According to researchers, people eating diets rich in PUFAs have up to 30% less likelihood of experiencing gum disease. This food research is ongoing, but scientists suggest that PUFAs may reduce inflammatory conditions in general, which wouldn’t only benefit your gums but other, systemic health issues as well.

Wasabi

Do you enjoy sushi? Maybe you are familiar with this potent green paste made from horseradish. Wasabi is well-known for “clearing the sinuses” if you get a little too much on your spicy tuna roll, but it can clear your mouth of bacteria as well. Studies show that wasabi creates an oral environment that makes it difficult for bacteria to stick to your teeth.

Cucumber

This delicious summer fruit is great in salads, sandwiches, or on its own– and now you can eat it knowing that you’re giving your oral health a boost as well. Cucumber increases salivary production, a key component to keeping a healthy mouth. Saliva not only washes food particles out of your mouth, it lowers the oral pH and provides calcium and phosphorus for dental enamel remineralization!

And don’t forget…

No matter what super foods you’re eating, drinking lots of water is a critical part of oral and systemic health. We look forward to seeing you at your next appointment with Dr. McLeod, the finest dentist Newburg OR has ever seen!

Photo Credit: Stacy Spensley via Compfight cc

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