Ask the Dentist: What foods protect against cavities?

Dr. Gary Vance

| 2 min read

Ask the dentist: What foods protect against cavities?
There is nothing better than biting into a juicy Michigan apple fresh from the farmer’s market. Besides the incredible taste, this in-season produce is packed with nutrients to keep the family healthy. Plus, did you know apples have been shown to help protect your teeth from cavities?
Fruits, including apples, contain higher levels of natural sugars and fiber. This combination of nutrients helps to increase your saliva formation and reduce the bacteria around your teeth.
Additional sources of fiber to fight against cavities include:
  • Dried fruits, such as dates, raisins and figs
  • Fresh fruit, such as bananas, apples and oranges
  • Beans
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Peanuts
This means eating an apple a day may actually keep the doctor (or dentist) away! However, remember moderation is the key. Too much of anything is not good. In addition to fruits and veggies, incorporate some of these healthy foods into your diet to protect your teeth from cavities.
Cheese was found to have higher pH levels, resulting in an increase in saliva. Combining calcium with your saliva helps to remineralize tooth enamel. Additional cavity fighting, calcium-rich foods include:
  • Milk
  • Sugar-free yogurt
  • Broccoli
  • Almonds
  • Brazil nuts
  • Dried beans
Whole Grains
According to Oral-B, when you eat whole grains, your gums are soaking up vitamin B and iron. They contain magnesium and fiber, both of which are important nutrients for your bones and teeth. Be sure to fit in these sources of whole grains into your diet:
  • Whole-grain cereals
  • Pasta
  • Brown rice
In addition to these healthy foods, brushing your teeth, flossing daily and bi-annual dental checkups will help keep cavities at bay. Plus, as a BCBSM Blue Dental plan member, you have access to Oral-B discounts to stay stocked up on all the necessities to keep you cavity-free.
Photo credit: ilovememphis

A Healthier Michigan is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.
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