Believe it or not, it’s true: eating cheddar cheese and sugarless gum and drinking green or black teas are good for your teeth.
How is this possible? The digestive process starts in your mouth when you chew your food and mix the chewed food with saliva. Your mouth also contains free-floating bacteria that aid in the food-breakdown process by metabolizing the sugars and simple starches in food, and these bacteria in moderate quantities are beneficial to your dental health. When these bacteria metabolize the food, they release small amounts of acid, which again, is fine if the acid comes from the free-floating bacteria. But when the bacteria clump together, they can cause serious dental health problems. When they clump on your teeth, they cause cavities. If they clump on your gums, the acid causes periodontal disease.
Recent studies have found that cheddar cheese, green tea, black tea, and xylitol – the artificial sweetener in sugarless gum – prohibit these bacteria from producing their acid. So even if there is a build-up of bacteria on your teeth and gums, consuming theses foods and teas can help lower your risk of developing cavities and gum disease.
However, there are simple things you can do to reduce the amount of clumping bacteria to begin with; simple things that everyone should do just for basic dental health. Brush your teeth twice a day, floss at least three times a week, and get your teeth cleaned twice a year (preferably with us!). In addition, it also helps to decrease how much sugar and simple starches (anything made with white flour) you eat, as the bacteria crave them and will reproduce more rapidly in the presence of their favorite foods. These simple tasks will drastically cut down on the quantity of bacteria in your mouth while leaving the necessary free-floating bacteria to help with digestion