Did you know that there are communities around the globe that maintain perfect dental health, with no traces of cavities, despite lacking modern toothpaste or dental healthcare? At the same time, many have access to these amenities, yet most suffer from dental issues.
How does this ironic fact come to be? It comes down to the diet.
Can you re-mineralize your teeth through the diet? How do you nourish your teeth through your diet? This article focuses on how best you can improve and maintain oral health from a vegan viewpoint. Read on.
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What is Tooth Re-mineralization?
Tooth remineralization is the process by which a tooth is made stronger and healthier through the provision of and increase in mineral content in them.
Tooth re-mineralization can either be done naturally through a proper diet and fluids or artificially through the use of remineralizing toothpaste.
Can You Re-mineralize Your Teeth?
Yes, you can re-mineralize your teeth.
Your teeth are just like any other bones in the body, and the body will naturally re-mineralize them whenever the appropriate nutrients for the task are available.
Remineralization is often a slow process that might take a few weeks, months, and even years to manifest, but as long as you are on the right track with the re-mineralization adjustments, you should have positive results in the long term.
Based on a vegan diet, how do you provide the much-needed nutrients for tooth re-mineralization to the body based on a vegan diet? Below are a few tips to guide on re-mineralizing teeth on a vegan diet.
Tips for Re-mineralizing on a Vegan Diet
Eat More Minerals
As aforementioned, you will need to stock up your body with lots of calcium and phosphorus to improve your oral health and help prevent tooth decay.
Like any other part of the body, your teeth are living tissues that need nutrients for proper health. Therefore, if you avoid dairy products, you should focus on using plant-based calcium and other nutrients to nourish teeth.
However, you should emphasize creating a system to absorb calcium by first ensuring there is enough vitamin D in the body through the intake of foods such as fortified cereal and mushrooms.
Once the vitamin D levels are in control, you can now focus on improving the calcium intake through foods like legumes, including beans, lentils, and black-eyed beans; leafy greens like kale, spinach, and broccoli; almonds; vegan milk options like soy milk, and calcium-added juices.
A diet full of raw and fresh foods like fruits and vegetables will also provide your teeth with the nutrition they need for nourishment. Leafy greens, for example, are incredibly high in calcium.
However, whether you are a vegan or not, you need to avoid food with high sugar and acid contents because they will only worsen your oral health or tooth decay. It is common knowledge that no matter how ideal your diet is, sugary and acidic foods are always a red flag towards achieving good oral health.
Although fruits have high sugar contents and might also be acidic, you should never deprive yourself of the benefits they offer. Instead, know how to balance and regulate their intake.
Alternatively, you can use supplements like green powders to introduce the necessary minerals to the body easily. Green powders can either be mixed with water, smoothies, or juices.
Stop Using Fluoride Toothpaste
To naturally re-mineralize your teeth, you have to stop using fluoride toothpaste. Fluoride toothpaste has corrosive minerals that are abrasive to the tooth enamels. However, this doesn’t mean that you will live with brown teeth. There are natural and safer ways to re-mineralize your teeth while maintaining a broad, white smile.
First, you can brush with baking soda. Baking soda is among the top ingredients of any toothpaste. It is famous for its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, making it most effective in taking care of cavities and tooth decay, and helps in the general re-mineralization of teeth.
You can also brush your teeth with homemade apple cider vinegar (ACV). Unlike fluoride toothpaste, ACV is highly alkaline and gentler on the teeth, making them the best to help you remineralize your teeth.
Coconut oil is also an excellent option for teeth re-mineralization. They are filled with essential dental nutrients and are gentler to teeth and gums, making them the best replacement for fluoride toothpaste.
Lastly, you can use oil pulling to detoxify your mouth and get any dirt and germs out without causing any discomfort. This simple practice goes a long way in reducing the acidity in the mouth, removing and killing bacteria, and even teeth whitening.
Apply Herbs and Extracts
Although there is no real science to justify and back up the use of herbs and natural extracts, many dentists have always approved using some, such as black walnut, to encourage tooth remineralization naturally. However, unless there is an urgent need to re-mineralize, just have this one on hold till you have no other option.
Drink More Water
Tooth enamels are kept in their best forms possible by simply ensuring that the mouth cavity is free of bacteria. Drinking more water, therefore, helps a lot in saliva production.
The more the saliva is produced, the more it will do to clean the mouth cavity. As you swallow the water with the saliva, it helps in significantly reducing the bacteria concentration in the mouth.
Stop Drinking with Your Meals
Whether you are drinking a juice or any other beverage, the aim is to drink them between meals or before bedtime, at least an hour after eating, but not with meals.
This greatly helps reduce the number of times your teeth are exposed to too much sugary content in the presence of the other food particles on the teeth that may help the sugary content stick on, making them more likely to cause more harm.
Avoid Brushing After Certain Meals
Avoid instantly brushing your teeth after eating highly acidic foods. Acids have a corrosive property on the tooth enamels and are likely to weaken the enamel layers as you eat.
Therefore, if you brush your teeth right after eating, you may unknowingly aid in the enamel corrosion process. Instead, if you can’t stand the discomfort after eating, rinse your mouth with water or an enamel mouthwash.
Visit the Dentist
Even though you can find as many vegan options for re-mineralizing your teeth independently, it is always good to get expert advice and guidance from a dentist.
Benefits of Re-mineralizing teeth
- Tooth re-mineralization helps reduce toothaches and gum pain and, if done right, can even do away with the whole complication.
- By simply making calcium and other essential minerals for teeth development available, re-mineralization can help rebuild tooth enamels.
- Once you do re-mineralization, there won’t be any need for root canals and other extreme dental procedures.
- Re-mineralization also helps you avoid all sorts of dental issues, from bleeding gums to cavities and even tooth decay. The process helps fill up all the holes in the teeth and even protects dental decay from acid attacks. Re-mineralization will also help you bid farewell to bad breath if it is part of your problems.
- The body can repair teeth naturally through remineralization and is even more effective and significant when employed along with other natural healing techniques.
How Does Being Vegan Affect Your Teeth?
- Lack of re-mineralizing foods – Some of the best re-mineralizing foods includes milk and other animal products, which edge out vegan options.
- Frequent snacking – To satisfy the need to provide energy for the body, vegans often snack around. Unfortunately, this might not be good for dental health because frequent snacks provide an enabling environment for bacteria in the mouth, leading to derogative tooth activities.
- Lack of essential amino acids – Important amino acids found in animal products, such as arginine, are crucial in breaking down dental plaque and aiding general dental health. However, there are vegan sources for arginine, such as lentils, peanuts, and soybeans.
- Vitamin B-12 deficiency – Animal products are good sources of vitamin B-12. However, vegans will need adequate B-12 supplements to step in for the demand.
- More starch and sugar in the diet – Vegans often eat plenty of starchy and sweet foods such as fruits and cereal. Since the mouth bacterias usually thrive in the presence of sugar, ensure to avoid sugary foods and instead go for non-sugary foods such as nuts and plenty of vegetables.
With a lot of patience, tooth re-mineralization is possible. With the guide above, choose a combination of tips that work best for you and stick by it, not forgetting to ensure that you eat the foods that provide the body with the necessary nutrients for re-mineralization.