Snacking can be dangerous to our healthy eating plans because many snack foods fall way outside of being healthy. Snacks are often salty and crunchy and sometimes sweet. Many of these foods are not only bad for our diet, but they’re bad for our teeth.
Keeping your snacks in check can be good for both your waistline and your gum line. Here are six foods we suggest keeping handy for snacking.
Cheese. Dairy, in general, offers benefits to teeth because of the calcium. Calcium helps strengthen teeth. Cheese, specifically, has been shown to actually have anti-cavity properties. A study published in an issue of General Dentistry stated this is because a rise in pH levels was documented after the subjects ate cheese. Higher pH levels in the mouth correlate with a lower risk of cavities.
Almonds. Almonds are also another great snacking option. If you need a little crunch, these offer a great fix. Like dairy, almonds are high in calcium, which helps strengthen teeth. Almonds are also high in protein while being low in sugar. Keeping sugar out of your diet is good because sugar feeds the cavity-causing bacteria in your mouth.
Apples. If you need a sweet fix, reach for an apple. While an apple has naturally occurring sugars, it’s also high in fiber and water. The increase in saliva production when eating apples helps to wash away cavity-causing bacteria. The fibrous content is also good for stimulating the gums.
Carrots. Another naturally sweet and crunchy snack is a carrot. Carrots offer the same kind of fiber benefits as apples but also contain Vitamin A. Vitamin A helps promote quick healing and prevent dry mouth.
Broccoli. Even if broccoli isn’t your favorite, the benefits it offers may make you reconsider. Broccoli contains calcium like dairy and almonds but also contains Vitamin K, which has extra bone benefits. Vitamin K helps prevent the break down of bone by blocking harmful substances and also increases the production of osteocalcin, which supports bone strength.
Water. Foods aren’t the only thing you need to be smart about when it comes to your teeth. Drinks are just as important. Sodas and juice are damaging for teeth because of the amount of sugar they contain. Coffees and teas not only contribute to teeth discoloration but if they’re also filled with sugar they are contributing to tooth decay. Water is a great way to rinse your mouth of cavity-causing bacteria.
When choosing healthy snacks for your teeth, try to avoid sugary and sticky foods. Be mindful of crunchy snacks as they can leave behind food debris in between your teeth. Always rinse your mouth with water to remove things left behind.
We at Marc Heiden Dentistry can help you with this.