I am yet to meet a Brit that is truly happy with their natural teeth. Pearly whites are not our strong point. In a recent survey it was found that 99.7% believe a smile is an important social asset and that ¾ of adults feel that an unattractive smile can damage a person’s chances for career success. With that in mind and a recession on our hands it is time we look at how our diets affect our teeth. We all know that sugar is not helping the situation but there is a realm of other foods just waiting to be consumed that will get your teeth on the path to looking nothing short of Daz white!
Strawberries & Lemons
Remember that strawberry flavoured toothpaste you had as a child? Well, here’s why. Strawberries are excellent at whitening teeth due to their acidic content but are high in natural sugars (4.7g of glucose and fructose). So, brush your teeth well afterwards. Lemons, too, have a natural whitening effect on teeth as their high acidic content removes staining. But, and this is a big but, Dr Nigel Carter, Chief Executive of the British Dental Health Foundation, commented that consuming lemons regularly “cause the tooth enamel to be worn away”.
Crunchy Fruit & Veg
Munching fibre-rich fruit and vegetables such as apples, celery, and carrots act as a brush by dislodging unwanted bacteria.
The British Dental Health Foundation argues that chewing gum also stimulates saliva production and extricates all sorts of bacteria that coat our teeth preventing decay.
Cheddar contains a whopping 721mg of Calcium and has also been proven to help prevent plaque ph levels from falling to a level, which is conducive to cavities forming. And out of the cheese family, Cheddar contains about 1/3 less fat than many of its dairy siblings.
An oldie but a goodie – a swig of water after every meal is a good way to prevent stains. Alison Newlyn, Specialist Orthodontist, believes that this is “one of the most effective ways at preventing tooth discoloration”.
What not to eat:
When it comes to white teeth it is more about what you don’t consume rather than what you do. Alison Newlyn argues that “reducing your intake of tea, coffee and red wine will help prevent the build up of stains” as these contain tannic acid which creates pores in our enamel where the colour collects. The rule of thumb goes – if it stains your clothes it will stain your teeth.