All countries & cultures have different foods that are healthy to eat, good for your teeth, and taste delicious!

Here are 5 tips from the American Dental Association (ADA) about what types of foods are good for your teeth:

#1: WATER

“Water, especially fluoridated water, is the best beverage for maintaining your oral health. That's because fluoride helps to make teeth more resistant to the acid attacks that can cause cavities. As of 2012, nearly 75 percent of the U.S. population had access to fluoridated water, so drinking water from your own kitchen sink can help prevent dental problems.” - ADA

 

Tap water in the United States is generally safe to drink, unlike in many other countries, and Colorado is frequently known for the purity of its water!

 
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#2 DAIRY PRODUCTS

“Milk, and other dairy products such as cheese and yogurt, are low in sugar, which is a good thing for your dental health. Plus, they contain protein and are full of calcium, which can help to strengthen your teeth.” - ADA

 

What are some examples of meals/snacks with dairy?

  • Syrian Style Labneh, a spiced yogurt cheese, is excellent for dipping or as a topping for many meals!
  • A grilled cheese sandwich with tomato soup, typically thought of as a “comfort food” in the United States
 

#3: LEAN PROTEIN

“Phosphorus-rich foods such as meat, poultry, fish, milk and eggs help to strengthen your teeth and contain valuable protein.” - ADA

 

What are some examples of meals/snacks with lean protein?

  • Fried fish with pondu (cassava leaves) and plantains is a common meal in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Nafaqo, eggs which are completed surrounded by mushed potato, often coated with breadcrumbs, and then fried, are commonly served as a snack in Somalia
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#4: FRUITS AND VEGETABLES

“Fruits and veggies are an important part of any balanced diet, and they are also good for your teeth. Since they are high in water and fiber, they help to balance the sugars they contain and help to clean your teeth. Chewing also helps to stimulate saliva production, which washes harmful acids and food particles away from your teeth.” - ADA

 

What are some examples of meals/snacks with fruits and veggies?

  • Assorted fruits, such as dragon fruit and tamarind, are frequently sold at markets in Myanmar/Burma and may be eaten on their own as snacks
  • Salsa pico de gallo is a type of sauce common in Mexico, as well as other Central and South American countries, and contains tomatoes, cilantro, and other healthy ingredients

 

#5: NUTS

“Nuts contain protein and minerals important for overall health. In addition, nuts that are low in carbohydrates don’t add to your risk of cavities. Why? Because tooth decay is caused by acid-producing bacteria that are activated by carbs. Another benefit is that chewing nuts stimulates saliva production, which can reduce your risk for tooth decay.” - ADA

 

What are some examples of meals/snacks with nuts?

  • Assorted nuts, eg walnuts and pistachios, are frequently consumed (sometimes with a little added salt) as snacks in the United States
  • Pollo al maní, eg peanut chicken, is a dish served in many Central and South American countries

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Other tips for good oral health! 

 
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