When it comes to maintaining a beautiful smile, regular brushing, flossing, and preventive visits to Paris Mountain Dental are a great start. But there’s another major component to protecting your teeth and gums: your diet. You probably already know that consuming too many sweets can increase your risk of cavities and gum disease – so what foods should you be actively seeking out instead? To help you make seasonal teeth-friendly choices, we’ve put together this list of fall foods that will promote a healthy mouth.
When the weather begins cooling, it’s the season for apple picking. Apples are at the top of our list of fall foods for several reasons! They provide vitamin C, which is necessary for healthy gums and fighting off infection. The fibrous structure of apples acts like nature’s toothbrush by gently scrubbing your teeth of plaque and food particles. Plus, there are many ways to incorporate them into your diet. For example, dip slices into nut butter, spiral onto a salad, or mix chopped apple into oatmeal.
Nuts are a satisfying year-round snack that contain protein, calcium, and phosphorus, which are important for strengthening and repairing tooth enamel. Pistachios are delightful for snacking. Stir pecans and walnuts into oatmeal, cream of wheat, and baked goods. Mix walnuts or pine nuts with spinach, kale, and/or basil leaves, olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes, and lemon to make excellent pesto that can be served on pasta or spread on sandwiches. Remember to never bite the shell of a nut to crack it–you might crack your tooth! Buy shelled nuts or use the appropriate tools to remove the shells.
Pureed pumpkin is delicious in pasta dishes, soups, pancakes, pie, and other baked goods. Pumpkin contains zinc, magnesium, vitamin A, and vitamin C. These nutrients help fortify your gums, prevent tooth decay, and strengthen your bones.