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Eat Fruits and Vegetables For Healthy Smile

For healthy teeth and gums this summer, look for these fruits and veggies in your local grocery or farmers market.


Apples and Citrus Fruit


An “apple a day” is also great for teeth too. Although not a substitute for brushing and flossing, eating an apple or other fibrus fruits like oranges, carrots or celery can help clean your teeth and increases salivation, which can neutralize the citric and malic acids left behind in your mouth. And while sugary apple juice may contribute to tooth decay, fresh apples are less likely to cause problems. This is because chewing the fibrous texture of apples stimulates your gums, further reducing cavity-causing bacteria and increasing saliva flow. And more saliva is good, because it decreases acidity in your mouth and washes away particles of food that lead to decay.

Be sure your diet includes citrus and other fresh fruits rich in vitamin C, such as apples, pears, strawberries, pineapples, tomatoes and cucumbers -- all rich in vitamin C.


Carrots, Celery and Root Vegetables


Strong, healthy gums are important to maintaining healthy teeth. And like apples and oranges, chewing raw carrots, celery and other fibrous and hard vegetables stimulates the gums and help to generate mouth cleansing saliva. Carrots and celery are also good sources of beta carotene, which your body needs to create vitamin A -- a nutrient essential for building strong teeth.


Leafy Green and Cruciferous Vegetables


Leafy green and dark, multi-colored vegetables such as lettuce and kale, spinach, asparagus, cabbage, chard and other greens are packed with a variety of vitamins and minerals necessary to maintain and improve oral health. Nutrients found in these dark green foods include vitamin A, vitamin C, beta carotene, phosphorus, calcium and magnesium. Phosphorus is stored in your teeth and bones to help your body balance and absorb calcium and magnesium.


Berries


Cranberries, blueberries, raspberries and other plant foods rich in anthocyanins may prevent the attachment and colonization of pathogens on host tissues (including teeth). Compounds found in cranberries for instance have been found to disrupt the enzymes associated with the bacteria forming process that leads to plaque and tooth decay. 

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