According to the CDC, less than 2 in 10 Americans are consuming their recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables each day. Whole, natural foods are essential for a healthy body and mind. Finding ways to incorporate more nourishing choices can be a simple step towards increased vitality and, more importantly, a clean bill of health after every dental appointment. Not surprisingly, the types of foods we eat directly influence the health of not just our body weight and organs, but our teeth as well. Choose meals that fuel your body to generate healthier cells and a more balanced state of wellness!
Around St. Patrick’s day this time of year, let’s examine green foods that can help with your overall and dental health. When you think of green food, what comes to mind first? Was it kale? Sadly, many healthy foods get a bad rep in the media, with words like bland, bitter, and boring. We want to give healthy foods the respect they deserve, and bring to you the healthiest foods for your teeth that happen to be green, but never gross!
Green Tea (Matcha)
One of the oldest beverages in humankind, green tea is a light and flavorful blend that is incredibly healthy. Not only does green tea fight free radicals and boost cellular health, it also contains protective compounds for your teeth! The American Academy of Periodontology reported that 490 men who regularly drank green tea experienced greater gum and dental health, reduced bleeding on probing and reduced pocket size in the gums! Drink up!
We’re surrounded by mint in the dental world – toothpastes, rinses and gums are all flavored with mint! However, the origin of these mint products, the fresh leaves, have an incredible ability to tackle dental health at the core: germs and bacteria. Mint leaves contain germicidal compounds that kill and shuttle away the harmful bacteria that lead to decay and cavities. Look for mint leaves at the market and chew on them or add them to smoothies for the best benefit.
Sweet toothed patients, rejoice! These little fruits are a perfect snack companion for increased oral health due to their vitamin C content. Just one kiwi has over 100% of your daily amount! This vitamin is an antioxidant and direct communicator with your teeth, preventing inflamed, swollen gums. Enjoy a kiwi with your breakfast for a daily dose of dental health!
Whether classic greens like kale or broccoli, or unconventional green foods like matcha and kiwi, there’s lots of health benefits from eating green! So this St. Patrick’s day, and for the rest of year going forward, look to increase you intake of healthy green foods. Your teeth, and overall health will benefit from more of these in your diet. Make sure to pair your green intake with bi-annual visits to your dentist for the best results!