Everything that passes your lips has an impact on your teeth, including what you drink. Not only can certain drinks stain your teeth, but their overall acidity can also soften tooth enamel, which can make your teeth more sensitive and vulnerable to cavities. If you’re trying to live a healthier life, discover how what you drink might be hurting your teeth and what could be better instead.
You probably already know that soda is bad for your waistline. It’s also terrible for your teeth because it contains high amounts of two of the worst things for your teeth: acid and sugar. Some sodas contain more than the recommended daily intake of sugar in just one bottle. Plus, many sodas contain citric or phosphoric acid to make them taste good. However, these acids can wear down the enamel protecting your teeth.
Many people think fruit juice is a healthier alternative to soda. However, some fruit juices contain just as much sugar as a bottle of soda. Plus, the majority of fruit juices are concentrated, which means you’re exposing your enamel to more acid than if you ate the fruit in its natural form. If you simply can’t give up your glass of fruit juice, look for options low in sugar. You can also lessen the potential damage from the acid and sugar by pouring a glass that’s half juice and half water.
If you’re looking for a drink that’s healthier than fruit juice, turn to vegetable juice. When you’re making or buying vegetable juice, be sure to limit the amount of fruit in the juice, since more fruit equals more sugar in the drink.
Dark, leafy greens, such as spinach or kale, are the best vegetables to include in your drink because they have high amounts of calcium that can boost enamel health. They also contain vitamin B, which can help fight against gum disease. If you need a little sweetness in your vegetable juice, look for ones that have a small amount of juice from carrots or apples, which are healthy in moderation.
If you want to enjoy a glass of wine with dinner, consider selecting a red wine instead of a white wine. White wine is more acidic, so it has an easier time destroying your enamel. Of course, red wine is notorious for staining your teeth. To help reduce the amount of staining over time, rinse with water after you have your wine.
Different types of teas can have a different impact on your teeth. Some research suggests that drinking green tea could have a positive effect on decay prevention and gum health. Brewed teas usually have a pH above 5.5, which makes them safer for your enamel. On the other hand, many iced teas have a very low pH that’s around 2.5 to 3.5, which means they’re acidic enough to cause damage to your enamel. Plus, some iced teas contain high levels of sugar.
If you’re looking for the best drink for your teeth, turn to water. A simple glass of water offers a variety of health benefits. First, it helps clean your teeth by washing away leftover food, acids, bacteria, and sugars that can lead to cavities. It can also help restore the pH balance in your mouth, and it has no calories. Plus, staying hydrated helps your body increase its saliva, which contains minerals that protect teeth from decay.
Sparkling water might not seem like a bad beverage choice since its main ingredient is water. However, these drinks can have low pH levels between 2.74 and 3.34. This gives your average bottle of sparkling water more erosive potential than orange juice. Therefore, it’s something you should avoid if you’re trying to live healthier and protect your teeth.
Milk is another great beverage option for a healthy smile. Milk is rich in calcium, which can help strengthen teeth and bones. Plus, like other dairy products, milk contains a protein called casein. Casein can help fight tooth decay by strengthening your tooth enamel. Additionally, milk contains phosphorous, which can actually help repair and strengthen tooth enamel that has dissolved from exposure to acid.
Sports drinks are marketed as a great way to replace vitamins and minerals lost during a workout. However, some sports drinks can contain up to 19 grams of sugar, which is more than some sodas. Even worse, sports drinks are high in sodium, with some bottles having just as much salt as a bag of chips. This combination of sugar and sodium means sports drinks can easily damage your tooth enamel and give you an unhealthy number of calories.
Not every beverage choice is bad for teeth. Now that you know which drinks to avoid and which drinks to consume, you can take better care of your mouth and show off that beautiful smile.
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