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Q: Can dieting be bad for my teeth and gums?

Posted December 17, 2014 in Advice Column, Ankeny

It’s easy to pack on the pounds during the holiday season, which explains why dieting is such a popular New Year’s resolution. Work hard to achieve your goals, but don’t ignore the health of your teeth and gums while dieting.

Avoid “Grazing”

Each bite you take alters the pH of your mouth. Your saliva neutralizes acids in your mouth and flushes away bits of food and debris. Eating throughout the day outside of meals can interfere with this process. If your diet encourages healthy snacking, always brush your teeth or rinse your mouth afterward.

Enjoy Fruit…But Not Too Much

Smoothies seem like a healthy bet, and many diets recommend eating more fruit. While fresh fruit is nutrient-rich, remember that dark berries can leave your teeth stained. Juices, especially citrus, are usually loaded with sugar and are highly acidic. Drink fruit juice through a straw, then rinse your mouth with water. Fruit snacks and dried fruit are best avoided because they stick to teeth and often contain added sugar.

Get Essential Nutrients

If your diet does not provide the recommended daily amount of vitamins, consider a dietary supplement. These nutrients are essential to keeping your tooth enamel strong and your gums healthy. This reduces your risk for cavities and tooth loss.

Happy holidays! To learn more about keeping teeth healthy, or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Erika Peddicord, we encourage you to call our office at (515) 963-3339.

Information provided by Dr. Erika Peddicord, Peddicord Family Dentistry, 121 N.E. 18th St., Suite C, 963-3339.


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