Green Vegetables for A Healthy Smile

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Like so many of the rules we learn in childhood, “eat your vegetables” is a real eye-roller for most kids. However, you realize that green vegetables can give you both health and energy when you grow up.

What else can green vegetables give you? A better smile. That is right. In addition to their ability to make you healthy, fruits and vegetables offer real dental benefits too. 

Remember, healthy prevention is the best medicine for your smile and dental health. More importantly, than you may realize for your overall health. 

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What you eat plays a big role in your life. The foods you choose, when and how often you eat them affect your general health and the health of your teeth and gums. 

You would be surprised to know that tooth decay is entirely preventable with good dental hygiene, regular dental visits, and of course, a healthy diet.

Today, we explain why and which green vegetables are most worthwhile for your smile.

Green Vegetables and Fresh Fruits Keep Your Teeth Healthy

You must be knowing some of the best foods for healthy teeth are fresh fruits and vegetables. Because of their nutritional and mouth health benefits. 

For example, crisp raw vegetables and fruits like apples, celery, and carrots help clean plaque on teeth and freshen breath. 

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Most fruits and vegetables contain loads of antioxidant vitamins, like vitamin C, that help protect gums and prevent gum disease. These antioxidants also help other tissues from bacterial infection and cell damage. 

Leafy salad greens contain lots of folic acid, which promotes a healthy mouth. Folic acid, a member of the B vitamin family, supports cell growth throughout your body.

Try to shop for fruits and veggies from your local grocery or farmers market for healthy teeth and gums. Fresh fruits and veggies are richer in nutrients and vitamins and are also healthy for you. 

Did you know that 9 out of every 10 people experience tooth decay or tooth cavity? Hence tooth decay remains the most common chronic childhood disease. People who lack access to affordable care and green food have significantly higher rates of oral disease. 

Green Vegetables Pack Nutrients for Enamel

Scientists are still studying about the amazing pro-health qualities of vegetables and fruits. 

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Leafy green and dark, multi-colored vegetables like lettuce, kale, cabbage, spinach, asparagus, chard, and other greens are packed with a variety of vitamins and minerals. These nutrients are necessary to maintain and improve your oral health. 

Nutrients in these dark green vegetables include vitamin A, vitamin C, beta carotene, calcium, phosphorus,  and magnesium. Phosphorus is stored in your bones and teeth to help your body balance and absorb calcium and magnesium.

Among other things, the right green vegetables can give you:

Antioxidants

Promote the healing of your oral wounds and protect against harmful free radicals.

Anthocyanins

Are powerful phytochemicals that keep pathogens from colonizing your gum tissue and teeth.

Calcium

Is very helpful and builds enamel. Green vegetables are calcium rich foods which you should have.

Magnesium  

The chemical strengthens your teeth, prevents cavities, and builds enamel.

Vitamin A

Including beta carotene, protects your mucosal barriers and against allergies. This can affect nasal breathing and upper teeth development. Vitamin A is a key nutrient for your gums’ health as well as tooth enamel. Your teeth enamel contains keratin, a protein that uses vitamin A during its formation process.

Vitamin C

Is beneficial in protecting your gums from cell damage and infection. Vitamin C reduces gum bleeding. Green vegetables are loaded with vitamin C and hence should be included in your diet.

Vitamin E

Reduces inflammation in your mouth.

Vitamin K

Promotes blood clotting to reduce bleeding, especially after brushing, flossing, and dental visits.

Folic acid

Promotes whole-mouth and whole-body health. The vitamin may protect against gum disease, especially in pregnant women. Folic acid is a man-made form of a B vitamin (B9), commonly called folate.

Folic acid can effectively reduce gum inflammation and help them become more strong against dental plaque and anaerobic bacteria. Plaque and bacteria are the two primary culprits responsible for tooth decay, bad breath, and gum disease. Folic acid can also help to reduce gum bleeding, which is one of the most common signs of gum disease.

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Phosphorus

Minerals can naturally protect and rebuild your enamel. Phosphorus is another essential vitamin for your healthy teeth. Phosphorus helps your body absorb and use calcium effectively. The mineral also strengthens your teeth by protecting and rebuilding tooth enamel.

Xylitol

Can effectively neutralize your mouth’s pH level and prevent harmful bacteria from sticking to your teeth’ surface. The presence of xylitol inhibits the growth of the cavity, causing bacteria in your mouth. It does this because these bacteria cannot utilize xylitol to grow. Over time if you continuously use xylitol, the quality of the bacteria in the mouth will keep changing. You will find fewer and fewer decay-causing bacteria surviving on your tooth surfaces.

Mind you; not all green veggies offer each of these benefits. We will look at some of your best bets at the end of this article.

Raw Green Vegetables Are Nature’s Toothbrush

Most of the green vegetables are high in fiber and packs a threefold benefit:

  • The fibrous texture can be very helpful in brushing food residue off your teeth.
  • High-fiber fruits and vegetables can increase salivation. Salivation decreases the acidity in your mouth and acts as a kind of natural rinse for stubborn food particles on your teeth and gums.
  • Eating fiber stimulates and massages your gum tissue naturally. Thus helping to fight cavities and further increase salivation.

So, green vegetables can not take the place of your toothbrush or regular flossing. But green vegetables do work as a powerful complement to your daily oral health routine.

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Experts recommend eating raw foods at the end of every meal. This will help “brush away” the foods that came before them.

The Best Green Vegetables for Your Teeth

Need some good greens for your grin? Get the most out of your daily meal by adding these to your plate: 

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Celery – It might not be tasty, but it is fiber in a stick. All the tooth brushing benefits are present in celery. 

Spinach – Folic acid, Calcium, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, iron, calcium, copper, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, protein, and many other nutrients are present in spinach. 

Kale – Kale has many of the same essential dental health benefits as spinach. But kale has the bonus of being hip and trendy. You cannot stomach the raw stuff. So you need to cook it, find some interesting, healthy recipes online.

Cabbage – As you know, high in Vitamins C and K, as well as fiber and antioxidants known as glucosinolates – spinach is believed to aid in disease suppression throughout your body.

Chard – Just one single cup of Swiss chard can provide you over three times the recommended daily requirement of vitamin K. It is also believed to lower blood pressure which is excellent for your oral health. 

Asparagus – These green sticks do not look like much. Still, they are brimming with fiber, folate, phosphorus, potassium, and Vitamins A, C, E, and K. 

You will be surprised to know that just half a cup of cooked asparagus can give you 57% of your recommended daily intake of Vitamin K. It is also known for its micronutrient value, including zinc, iron, and riboflavin.

Carrots – They are mostly orange but green on top. These root vegetables are super fibrous and packed with beta carotene. That is why they form an integral part of any diet plan. 

But besides these green vegetables, keep in mind that plenty of other green foods, from green apples to green tea, can also pack an oral health punch. 

Good Oral Health is an Essential Part of Your Everyday Lives

Good oral health is essential as it enhances your ability to smile, speak, eat, and show your emotions through facial expressions. And preventive oral health habits such as regular dental care and good oral hygiene, if developed early in life can lead to a healthy person.

Good overall oral health is very important throughout a person’s life. While oral health has improved over the past several decades, a sizable number of people go without basic dental care, which leads to greater rates of oral diseases.  

From gum disease, tooth decay to oral cancer, oral diseases still cause significant pain and hardship for many, particularly those lacking access to care and preventive services.

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A nicer smile, better breath, and a healthier mouth – they are all just a dentist’s visit away. But how do you know when to make the appointment – that is where many people mess up. All these veggies will also prevent frequent teeth cleaning at the dental clinic thus safeguarding your enamel.

You need to have access to affordable, preventive dental care to help decrease disparities in oral health. In particular, early prevention and early intervention in early childhood and adolescent years are important in your life. If you lose teeth, it might have many implications on your overall well-being that continues throughout your life.

Final Thoughts

Leafy green vegetables can also support healthy oral bacteria. Their fibrous leaves can keep your teeth clean, stimulate saliva production, and enrich your saliva with minerals to help keep your tooth enamel strong. 

Are you eating the recommended amount of fruits and green vegetables for your smile every day? If you get the right nutrients in your diet and maintain your oral hygiene, you can keep your smile beautiful and healthy to impress your dentist at your next check-up.

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