With regard to oral hygiene and maintenance, the teeth they are always the protagonists, they monopolize all the attention and leave in the background elements that are so important for nutrition and food like erasers. These are the base of the teethsupport and attach to the jaw bone.
Maintaining healthy gums is not only aesthetic, there are many ailments such as gingivitiswhich at first glance may seem less serious, since only bleeding gums are noticed, but which can nevertheless lead to a disease that can endanger the whole of the dentition, the periodontitis. This bacterial infection affects the periodontium, which encompasses the ligaments that surround the teeth and the bone that supports them. Specifically in Spain, eight million adultsOne in three people suffer from one of these forms of periodontal disease.
By focusing all attention on the teeth, in addition to professional treatments such as whitening, dangerous tendencies such as brushed with baking soda or activated carbon. The home-made “cures” which, on the part of many organizations, such as the OCU, are pursued because they can have negative consequences such as tooth wear.
“The healthcare community needs to be aware of the relevance of periodontitis and the repercussions it has not only at the local level, in the mouth, but also at the systemic level, i.e. in the whole body», points out the Spanish Association of Periodontics and Osseointegration (SEPA). “Poor periodontal health makes it difficult to control the Diabetes or increases its complications, increases the risk of suffering cardiovascular illnesses“, also stand out.
There are risk factors for poor gum health, such as smoking, alcohol abuse, obesity, and genetic predisposition. However, food plays an important role on the prevalence of these pathologies. In fact, there are a number of foods that have a more direct positive impact on gum health.
chewing is important
There are foods that, due to their nutrients, contribute to healthy gums, however, the gum itself texture of these foods also has a positive impact on oral health. That is, it is better to consume foods such as whole fruits and not in juice, because when chewing, its fibers make a sweep between the teeth and the gums Natural way.
Some studies, such as the one conducted at the Aichi Gakuin University School of Dentistry in Japan, published in Journal of Epidemiologythey investigated more than 2,700 people between 75 and 80 years old and has succeeded in demonstrating a relationship between dental health, lifestyle and metabolic syndrome (the set of factors that contribute to cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes).
Specifically, they revealed that people who chew food less are more likely to suffer from a certain type of metabolic syndrome. They also found that people who use secondary oral hygiene products, such as interdental brushes or dental floss, have a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Additionally, poor diet and poor dental health form a loop, as weak teeth or gums unable to hold teeth still (one of the symptoms of periodontitis), decreases the ability to chew correctly, further aggravating the main problem.
The consumption of raw and whole fruits, in addition to sweeping away the bacterial plaque that could form on the dental surface, promotes blood circulation in the gums. “Of all the fruit, the apple is the one that has the most effect on gums and teeth,” says Simón López, a dentist at a clinic in Marqués de Vadillo, Madrid.
“It is better to eat the apple with already bites the skin, avoiding the use of a knife, as long as the teeth do not move. This habit, in addition to favoring the production of saliva which makes up the food bolus, thus helping to have good digestion, also regulates the acidity of the mouth and modifies the PH, prevent halitosis and cavities“, underlines the expert.
Calcium, phosphorus and casein contained in cow’s milk inhibit the development of cavities. Indeed, in the case of calcium, 99% of this nutrient is distributed between the bones and the teeth.
To obtain phosphorus, a nutrient that also prevents cavities, it is sufficient to include in the diet Lentils, peas, poultry, whole grains or eggsas one points out study from the King Juan Carlos University of Madrid.
These fruits contain polyphenols, a type of antioxidants they are able to prevent the growth of some of the bacteria that cause gum disease. A property discovered by a to research published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. Specifically, he explains that bilberry extract shows antibacterial activity against bacteria periodontal pathogen Fusobacterium nucleatumwhich may be due to the ability of polyphenols to scavenge iron.
Peppers, cabbage and citrus fruits
Foods containing vitamin C, in addition to strengthening the immune system, promote the production of collagenbased on the maintenance of connective tissue and the elasticity of ligaments and muscles, being in turn a basic component of the gumsthe deterioration of which may endanger the integrity of the entire prosthesis.
Throughout life, the production of collagen naturally decreases, so its intake through food becomes more important, by consuming not only citrus fruits such as oranges, but also foods that contain it. more than twice the vitamin C like peppers or cabbage. “Although it should be noted that it is not advisable to consume citrus fruits in excess, since their acids can damage tooth enamel,” warns López.