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6 Vitamins For Healthy Teeth and Gums

We eat and drink every day and that process all starts in our mouth.  What you eat and how you nourish your body have a big impact on your gum and teeth health.  The state of your oral health is related to your overall health.  A happy mouth can mean happy health.

With all the information out there and all kinds of diets, it may be hard to figure out what exactly to eat for your gums and teeth.  I’ve narrowed it down to 6 vitamins that specifically help with this.  Read on to find these vitamins, why they help, what foods have them, and some snack ideas, so you can start nourishing your mouth right away!

Vitamin D

  • Why It Helps
    • Vitamin D plays an important role in bone development, natural tooth repair and helps keep your gums in good health.  Being deficient in this vitamin can cause gum infection and inflammation,  impact dental implant healing and  contribute to developing cavities.  
    • The main source of vitamin D is from the sun since when you absorb sunlight, your body absorbs it through your skin and then converts it to vitamin D.  There are not that many food sources that contain a high amount of vitamin D.  
    • If you live in a northern environment, experience winter, and have reduced sun exposure you may be at risk of being low in vitamin D.  In this case, you may need to supplement, please consult with your healthcare provider to see if this is something you should consider. 

  • Food Sources
    • fatty fish such as salmon and tuna
    • cheese and eggs
    • mushrooms grown under UV light
    • milk and cereals labeled fortified with vitamin D

Vitamin C

  • Why It Helps
    • Vitamin C helps to maintain your gum and teeth health.  Your body cannot make this vitamin, you must get it from food!  It is an antioxidant that helps to heal wounds, sustain teeth and tissues, and make collagen.  And collagen helps to maintain the structure of your gums.  
    • So, if you skimp on vitamin C and potentially become deficient you could be at risk of getting bloody and/or inflamed gums or developing gum disease.

  • Food Sources
    • citrus fruits such as lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruits, and tangerines
    • strawberries and kiwis
    • veggies such as red and green bell peppers, potatoes, broccoli, and brussel sprouts

Calcium

  • Why It Helps
    • You probably have heard that calcium is good for your teeth, but why?  Well, a whopping 99% of the calcium in your body is in your teeth and bones!  Calcium is needed to strengthen your enamel (that’s stuff on the outside of your teeth) and helps protect your teeth from getting cavities or deteriorating.

  • Food Sources
    • dairy such as milk, cheese, and yogurt
    • beans, especially white beans
    • canned salmon or fish with bones
    • soy products such as tofu and edamame
    • dark leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and collards
    • seeds and nuts such as chia seeds, almonds, and sesame seeds
    • food labeled fortified with calcium

B Vitamins

  • Why they help
    • When you consume food sources of b vitamins your body uses the vitamins for cellular energy, thus giving us overall energy and helping us function.
    • There are several b vitamins and 2 b vitamins, vitamin b2 aka riboflavin and vitamin b3 aka niacin have been shown to play a role in gum health.  These 2 b vitamins help to prevent or reduce overall oral inflammation, canker sores, and gum disease.

  • Food Sources
    • Riboflavin aka b2
      • dairy such as milk, yogurt, cheese, and eggs
      • red meat such as pork and beef
      • chicken
      • green veggies such as asparagus, spinach, and broccoli
      • salmon
      • almonds
    • Niacin aka b3
      • red meat such as beef and pork
      • poultry such as chicken and turkey
      • fish such as salmon and tuna
      • bananas
      • white potatoes
      • nuts and seeds
      • mushrooms
      • avocado

Potassium

  • Why It Helps
    • Potassium protects your teeth from losing minerals and by doing so, it aids in keeping your teeth strong and minimizing tooth decay.
    • Plus, potassium helps with blood clotting.  If you’re having oral surgery plan your post-surgery recovery meals to include foods that are rich in this vitamin.

  • Food Sources
    • beans and lentils
    • fruit such as oranges, avocadoes, and bananas
    • leafy greens such as spinach and broccoli
    • dairy such as milk and cheese
    • mushrooms
    • potatoes

Phosphorus

  • Why It Helps
    • Phosphorus helps your body absorb and use calcium.  In doing so, phosphorus works with calcium to help protect and rebuild your enamel and strengthen your teeth.

  • Food Sources
    • poultry such as chicken and turkey
    • fish such as scallops, sardines, salmon, and tuna
    • seeds such as sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds
    • dairy such as cheese and eggs
    • red meat such as beef and pork

Meal and Snack Ideas

So, wow that may seem like a lot of information and a variety of types of foods that contribute to teeth and gum health.  Well, as you may have noticed there are a lot of foods that contain a variety of smile nourishing vitamins.  Scroll on to find 2 meals and 2 snack ideas!

  • Meal Ideas
    • For breakfast try scrambled eggs with cheese, spinach and topped with sliced avocado
    • For lunch or dinner try baked salmon with brown rice and sautéed mushrooms

  • Snacks Ideas
    • Nuts with 1 ounce of cheese (or a cheese stick)
    • Yogurt topped with chia seeds and sliced strawberries or bananas

Thanks for reading, I hope you found this useful.  If you are looking for help with meal plans or nutrition coaching for general dental health or if you have an upcoming oral surgery and need help with what to eat before and after, head on over to my contact me page and reach out!

All The Best and Cheers to Foods for Dental Health

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