“An apple a day keeps the doctor away”.
While that may be an old quote, it does have some truth to it.
Apples, sugar free gum, water and several other health foods are nature’s way of keeping us healthy. These fresh fruits and vegetables pack all of the vitamins and minerals we need to maintain good overall health and good dental health.
In no particular order, here are 20 health foods that will keep your body and your teeth in optimal shape:
Healthy Food # 1: Apples
Apples are loaded with 4.4 grams of dietary fiber, only 95 calories and contain .47 grams of protein. Plus, the apple is a natural toothbrush. As you chew, it stimulates your gums, increases saliva flow in the mouth and prevents cavity buildup as it cleanses the teeth surface. Try eating a full apple after your dinner to help clean your teeth.
Healthy Food # 2: Celery
Celery is a rich source of vitamins and is one of the few vegetables that retain most of its nutritional value when cooked. Celery is the best weapon you can use to keep bacteria inside your mouth at bay. As you chew celery, it helps in producing more saliva in your mouth which further prevents plaque production. Eat a piece of celery, once a week to give your teeth a natural tooth brushing.
Healthy Food # 3: Water
Water is essential so drink as much as you can on a daily basis. Every drink helps to clean your mouth as well as helps to clear toxins from your body. Water helps to produce saliva in your mouth which deposits essential minerals into the teeth. It also keeps your gums hydrated and washes away all the debris left over from meals. It helps to keep your teeth free of decay by drinking a sufficient amount of water after every food intake.
Healthy Food # 4: Cheese
Cheese has many of the same nutrients as milk and is a great choice for those who are reluctant to drink milk. It also helps keep your teeth healthy and strong. Cheese contains casein, which helps in fortifying your tooth’s surface. So, if you are prone to cavities, chewing a small piece of cheese can prevent decay.
Healthy Food # 5: Cocoa
Cocoa is actually good for your teeth. It is filled with a substance that helps to reduce gum inflammation and prevents tooth erosion and decay. So go ahead and have that piece of dark chocolate, not only will it prevent tooth decay, but it will also brighten your mood.
Healthy Food # 6: Kiwi
Kiwi an excellent source of vitamin C. Proper amounts of vitamin C in the body help maintain the collagen network in your gums, prevents gum infections, speeds healing and strengthens your gums. Keeping your gums healthy is essential for preventing periodontal disease.
Healthy Food # 7: Onions
Even though stinky breath after eating an onion is nothing to brag about, the benefits onions offer are. Onions naturally cleanse your body and mouth by eliminating harmful bacteria. This action of kicking bacteria away helps in preventing tooth decay.
Healthy Food # 8: Sugar-free gum
A stick of sugar-free gum after a meal will freshen your onion breath, as well as helping to prevent tooth decay. The sugar alternative in these gums curbs attacks by the bacteria which can degrade tooth enamel. Plus, chewing your gum exercises and strengthens your jaw.
Healthy Food # 9: Sesame seeds
These tiny seeds are rich in calcium, which helps in keeping your teeth healthy and strong. Besides, sesame seeds dissolve harmful plaque that forms on your teeth and also builds up your tooth enamel.
Healthy Food # 10: Pears
Pears are fibrous in nature and they also help in producing additional saliva in your mouth. They have a high acid neutralizing effect on tooth surfaces. Eat a pear daily to keep your tooth surface strong and healthy.
Healthy Food # 11: Whole grains
Whole grains like brown rice, wheat, oats and buckwheat are great sources of complex carbohydrates, fiber and various vitamins. Whole grains also reduce the body’s need to metabolize protein for energy. This process protects muscle tissues. Besides, they are also rich in magnesium which aids in absorption of calcium from blood into the bones to make the bones strong and healthy.
Healthy Food # 12: Milk
Milk is one of the best sources of calcium. Skim or low-fat milk has the same nutritional benefits of whole milk without all the fat. It also contains other fortified nutrients, like vitamin D, which are essential for bone health.
Healthy Food # 13: Green leafy vegetables
Dark green leafy veggies like broccoli, kale, and bok choy are great sources of calcium. In addition to this, you can also obtain your daily dose of calcium from collards and turnip greens. The alkaline effect of eating a diet rich in these vegetables will help to strengthen your bones and promote bone growth by preventing calcium loss. Plant sterols (steroid hormones) are converted to a hormone, calciferol, required for calcium absorption.
Healthy Food # 14: Orange Juice
Oranges are essential for healthy bones as they are loaded with beneficial nutrients like vitamins, minerals and calcium. Individuals who have intolerance to lactose and cannot obtain their daily calcium requirements from dairy products can eat oranges to get very close to the same benefit. Try incorporating more oranges in your daily diet to help your bones become stronger and healthier.
Healthy Food # 15: Sardines
As unappealing as the name sounds, sardines are actually very good for you. They have a high level of calcium and vitamin D, both of which play a critical role in bone development. According to dietary standards, eating three ounces of canned sardines is almost equal to the calcium obtained from a cup of milk.
Healthy Food # 16: Salmon
Salmon is a great source for omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D. Eat this delicious fish at least twice a week to keep your bones and heart healthy and fit.
Healthy Food # 17: Soy milk
If lactose is a problem for you, try soy milk. Soy milk is an excellent source of calcium. As with cow’s milk, the calcium in soy milk is easily absorbed by the bones.
Healthy Food # 18: Cranberries
Cranberries are a great source of healthy vitamins and minerals. They are loaded with 4.6 grams of dietary fiber in just 1 cup. They are also rich in antioxidants, vitamin C and potassium. Enjoy your cranberries with cereal or bread.
Healthy Food # 19: Tofu
Tofu is source of calcium, protein, vitamin K and magnesium. Sneaking in small amount of tofu in your diet will boost your bone health.
Healthy Food # 20: Avocado
Avocado is one of the super foods. It has been said that an avocado provides so many nutrients that one could live off of them. With 4.02 grams of protein, 13.5 grams of fiber, and high levels of vitamins and minerals, you can understand how they earn the title of “super food”.