Going on a diet to lose weight is a habit for many. Has anyone tried changing their diet for a Hollywood smile? Together with the experts, we figure out how to do this.
A bit of theory
First, let’s figure out what a tooth is made of.
This is the top layer of the tooth and therefore the hardest and strongest part of the tooth. Its color can range from slightly yellow to a more grayish white, which is why some people may have whiter teeth than others.
The enamel protects the inner part of the tooth, which contains the sensory nerves. When eating hot, cold or acidic food, the enamel acts as a protection against it and the formation of plaque.
Dentin (tooth bone)
Right under the enamel, dentin covers the entire tooth from crown to root and connects to the nerves inside. Its elastic structure helps to protect the enamel from cracking. However, dentin is also very susceptible to bacteria that destroy it. If the enamel is worn and the gums are exposed, the dentin layer is exposed, pain occurs and sensitivity to certain foods and drinks appears. If the protective layer has thinned, and in some cases completely disappeared, this means that the nerves are more likely to be sensitive.
After bleaching, experts recommend following the so-called “white” diet (also called “transparent”). It helps to reduce tooth staining and minimize gum discomfort. However, such a diet can be followed and not only after the procedures in the dentist’s office.
Why do teeth darken?
There are three factors that contribute to tooth darkening: chromogens, tannins and acids. They are found in many common foods and can stain or weaken enamel (which can form dark spots).
How does food and drink affect teeth?
As Oleg Kushch, a dentist-surgeon-implantologist and general director of the Affordable Dentistry network of clinics, explains, most of the foods we eat have a negative effect on the enamel condition. Soft food, sticking to it, provokes the onset of caries, from burning drinks, for example, tea or coffee, microcracks may appear, and due to coloring substances in the products, teeth begin to turn yellow.
To avoid such unpleasant consequences, it is enough to carefully monitor your diet and give preference to the “white” diet – a diet in which the foods consumed have a minimal effect on tooth enamel.
What can you eat on a “white” diet?
To prevent the color of the enamel from darkening and the appearance of caries, you need to add products containing fluoride, calcium and vitamin D group to the daily menu. Calcium in combination with fluorine helps to strengthen the enamel, and vitamin D and phosphorus allow the body to absorb it better.
These products include:
• oatmeal, buckwheat porridge – sources of zinc and fiber;
• fermented milk products: cottage cheese, sour cream, cream, butter, kefir, yogurt, yogurt, different types of cheese – all these products contain calcium, protein casein, phosphates;
• legumes: beans, peas, lentils, chickpeas;
• chicken eggs and liver are sources of vitamin D;
• fish products: sea bass, mackerel, pink salmon, mullet, hake, tuna, cod, shrimp, squid – they are rich in phosphorus, iodine and fluorine;
• firm fresh vegetables and fruits: cucumbers, cabbage, radishes, carrots, apples, pears – they help to clean the enamel from plaque and food debris.
On a “white” diet, you should also remember about thorough oral hygiene – brush your teeth twice a day for at least 2-3 minutes and be sure to use special devices for cleaning the interdental spaces, for example, dental floss or an irrigator, – says Oleg Kushch.
What foods in the diet should be limited?
It is not necessary to deny yourself the pleasure of eating a chocolate bar or snacking on chips. However, their consumption is worth controlling, and here’s why.
– Soft, carbohydrate-rich foods create an acidic environment in the mouth. In it, bacteria multiply, which lead to the development of caries. Therefore, dried fruit, baked goods, chips and other snacks can be your ticket to frequent dental appointments.
– Foods high in sugar (sucrose and fructose) are also an ideal breeding ground for bacteria, and sweets in general are the most harmful food for teeth. Biscuits, jams, sweets, cakes, lollipops contain carbohydrates, which create a favorable environment for fermentation on the surface of the teeth and the development of bacteria. Therefore, those with a sweet tooth should remember to rinse their mouth with water after eating to avoid the unpleasant consequences of their weaknesses.
In addition, the “white” diet involves restricting the diet of coffee and tea, as well as sugary carbonated drinks. The former contain a large amount of dyes and can provoke darkening of the teeth, and lemonades and soda are very high in sugar and dyes, which have an extremely negative effect on the health and color of the enamel.
Make yourself a reminder of foods that you can eat every day and the consumption of which is best to be minimized – with a responsible approach to nutrition and careful oral hygiene, you will forget about dental problems.