We all know what foods we should be limiting to maintain strong and healthy teeth – sugary foods and drinks that strip away your tooth enamel. In fact, when sugars and starches come in contact with the plaque on your teeth, they create acids that can damage your tooth enamel for as long as 20 minutes after you’ve finished eating.

It’s just as important to be aware of the foods that keep your teeth the healthiest. Tooth enamel is the toughest tissue in the human body so here are four of the best foods to keep your tooth enamel strong.

1. Fish

Fish is known as the best out of the proteins for teeth. Fatty fish, that is high in omega-3 and vitamin D, helps absorb calcium and protect your teeth from tooth decay. This includes salmon, sardines, and rainbow trout.

2. Veggies, veggies, veggies!

It’s no surprise that vegetables are great for maintaining your oral health, considering they’re absolute essentials for a healthy living. Not only do veggies keep your teeth strong, but high-fibre veggies actually help clean your teeth and gums. They keep saliva flowing, which rinses your teeth, acts as a natural defence against tooth decay, and protects your tooth enamel from weakening. The best high-fibre vegetables are beans, peas, spinach and other leafy greens.

3. Dairy foods

High-calcium foods and drinks, such as cheese, milk and yogurt, are known to strengthen and restore minerals in your teeth. What most people forget is that since calcium also strengthens bones, it plays a great role strengthening your jaw bones, which is also a part of dentistry (remember that your dentists don’t just care about your teeth, but your whole mouth including the jaw bones that hold your teeth!). Low-fat dairy products are also filled with calcium, so skim milk and low-fat yogurt and cheese will also do the job.

4. Chocolate

Bet you didn’t expect chocolate to be on our list on healthiest foods for teeth! While it’s best to limit your milk chocolate consumption (as it’s sweetened), dark chocolate (70% cacao) is actually considered a superfood for healthy teeth. Dark chocolate contains a compound known as CBH which hardens and strengthens the tooth enamel, rather than strips it down like sugary snacks do. So, if you ever want to replace your sugary snacks with a healthier alternative, dark chocolate is the way to go.

Castlemaine Smiles is a family dental practice offering state-of-the-art dental care and same day emergency response. For more advice on how to maintain your dental health, book an appointment with one of our trusted dentists on (03) 5472 1377 or here.