An apple a day keeps the doctor away…and cavities too. Tooth decay is caused by a number of factors, but you can control one: nutrition. When you maintain a healthy and nutritious diet, you are actually preventing cavities! Fruits, veggies, whole grains—all of those healthy options your doctor suggests are good for you holistically, and your teeth are no exception to all the benefits that come from a healthy diet. Low-fat dairy, and lean meats like turkey, chicken and fish are all excellent dietary additions too. Make sure you keep calcium in your diet: calcium is important to prevent bone loss (osteoporosis) as we age. If you lose calcium in your jaw bones, your teeth can become loose and fall out! Doctors recommend you get 1,000 milligrams of calcium per day from your food. Try fat-free yogurts and low-fat cheeses. Not a fan of dairy? Try getting it from greens. Kale, broccoli, spinach, and chard are all calcium rich vegetables that are easy to incorporate to your diet.
What should you stay away from? Processed foods (like chips, sodas, ‘juices’) all tend to be high in fats and sugars that can result in obesity and tooth decay. Alcohol is another culprit, but as the saying goes, everything in moderation. As long as you limit your alcohol intake to small amounts every once in a while, you can prevent irritation of the sensitive lining of your mouth. Excessive alcohol may also be related to oral cancer.