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Healthy Eating for Healthy Teeth

Diet plays a major role in preventing cavities and maintaining good oral health. Not only does what you eat matter, when you eat is equally important.

How Diet Affects Teeth

Changes in your mouth start the minute you eat or drink certain foods. Sugars and carbohydrates in the foods you eat and drink are converted to acids by bacteria in your mouth.

Acids are the enemy of your teeth’s enamel, the hard, outer surface that protects against decay. The more often you eat and snack, the more frequently you’re exposing your teeth to the cycle of decay.

Bacteria thrive in your mouth, fed by a lot of sugars. They can build up to form plaque on your teeth, leading to an inflammatory response that causes the breakdown of the gums, bone and other supporting structures of your teeth.

Strong teeth and healthy gums also depend on nutrients—calcium, phosphorous and Vitamin C—provided by a varied diet. You should eat a balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, protein, calcium-rich foods and whole grains.

What to Eat for Healthy Teeth and Gums

For good oral health, keep these diet tips in mind and look for: