Like so many of the rules you  might have learnt in childhood, “eat your vegetables” is a real eye-roller for most children. However, only when you grow up do you realize that green vegetables can give you both health and energy.

What else can you get from green vegetables? A better smile. Yes, that is true. In addition to their ability to make you healthy, green vegetables offer real dental benefits too. Remember, healthy prevention is your best medicine for your smile, dental health and overall health. 

What you eat every day plays a big role in your life. The foods you select, when and how often you eat them affect your overall health and your dental health. 

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Everyone knows green vegetables are a must in any healthy diet. But according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC report, only 1 in every 10 adults get enough fruit or green vegetables. And that is the reason many are missing out on the essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber that green foods provide.

You would be surprised to know that tooth decay at any time is entirely preventable with regular dental visits, good dental hygiene, and of course, a healthy diet.

Here we explain why and which green vegetables are most useful for your smile.

Fresh and Green Vegetables Keep Your Teeth Healthy

As you might know, the best foods for your teeth are fresh fruits and vegetables. Because of their nutritional and mouth health benefits. 

For example, crisp raw vegetables and fruits like celery, apples, and carrots help freshen your breath and clean plaque on teeth

Most vegetables and fruits contain loads of antioxidant vitamins, like vitamin C, that help protect gums and prevent gum disease. Antioxidants present in green vegetables also prevent cell damage and help other tissues from bacterial infection. 

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Leafy salad greens are rich in folic acids, which promotes a healthy mouth. Folic acid, a member of the B vitamin family, supports cell growth all over your body.

You should try to shop for fresh fruits and green veggies from your local grocery or farmers market for healthy teeth and gums. Fresh fruits and veggies are richer in vitamins and nutrients and are also healthy for your body. 

Do you know that 9 out of every 10 of you experience tooth decay or cavity Hence tooth decay remains the most common chronic childhood disease. Individuals who lack access to affordable dental care and green food have significantly higher rates of oral disease. 

Green Vegetables Pack Nutrients for Enamel

Scientists are in the process of studying the amazing pro-health qualities of vegetables and fruits. 

Leafy green and dark, multi-colored vegetables like spinach, lettuce, kale, cabbage, asparagus, chard, and other leafy greens are packed with a variety of minerals and vitamins. These nutrients are essential to maintain and improve your oral health. 

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Nutrients in these dark leafy vegetables include beta carotene, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium. Phosphorus mineral from your food is stored in your bones and teeth to help your body balance and absorb calcium and magnesium.

If you eat the right green vegetables it can give you:

Antioxidants

They promote the healing of your oral wounds. They also protect against harmful free radicals.

Calcium

Calcium is very helpful and builds tooth enamel. 

Anthocyanins

Thee are powerful phytochemicals that keep away pathogens from colonizing your gum tissue and teeth.

Magnesium

These prevents tooth cavities, strengthens your teeth, and builds enamel. 

Vitamin A

Together with beta carotene, protects your mucosal barriers and against allergies. This vitamin has an impact on nasal breathing and upper teeth development. Vitamin A is a key nutrient for your gums’ health and your tooth enamel. Your teeth enamel has keratin, a protein that uses vitamin A during its formation process.

Vitamin C

This is helpful in protecting your gums from infection and cell damage. It also reduces gum bleeding.

Vitamin E

This vitamin reduces inflammation in your mouth.

Vitamin K

The vitamin promotes blood clotting thus reducing bleeding, especially after brushing, flossing, and dental visits.

Phosphorus

The mineral can naturally protect and rebuild your enamel. Phosphorus is an in for your healthy teeth. The Phosphorus mineral helps your body absorb and use calcium effectively. The chemical also strengthens your teeth by protecting and rebuilding tooth enamel.

Folic acid

Folates promotes whole-mouth and whole-body health. Folic acid may protect against gum disease, especially in pregnant women. Folic acid can effectively reduce gum inflammation. Folate also makes teeth and gums become more strong against dental plaque and anaerobic bacteria.

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Bacteria and plaque are the two primary culprits responsible for decay, bad breath, and gum disease. The folate can also help to reduce gum bleeding, which is one of the most common signs of gum disease.

Xylitol

Xylitol is very effective in neutralizing your mouth’s pH level and preventing harmful bacteria from sticking to your teeth’ surface. The presence of xylitol in your mouth inhibits the growth of the cavity-causing bacteria in your mouth. This is because these bacteria cannot utilize xylitol to grow.

If you continuously use xylitol, the quantity of the bacteria in your mouth will keep changing. You will find very few decay-causing bacteria surviving on your tooth surfaces.

Remember, not all green vegetables offer each of these benefits. Here we look at some of your best bets at the end of the article.

Raw Green Vegetables Are Nature’s Toothbrush

Most of the fresh, green vegetables are high in fiber and packs several benefit:

  • The fibrous texture of vegetables can heal in brushing food residue off your teeth and mouth.
  • High-fiber vegetables can increase salivation. Do you know that salivation decreases the acidity in your mouth? Moreover, it acts as a kind of natural rinse for stubborn food particles on your gums and teeth.
  • Eating fiber massages your gum tissue naturally. This will help to fight cavities and further increase salivation.

Remember, green vegetables can not take the place of your toothbrush. But green vegetables do work as a powerful complement to your daily oral health routine.

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Therefore, experts recommend eating raw foods or salads at the end of every meal. Thus helping to “brush away” the foods that came before them.

The Best Green Vegetables for Your Teeth

Need some good greens for your grin? Get the most out of your daily meal by adding these to your plate: 

Celery – It might not be tasty, but it is fiber in a stick. All the tooth brushing benefits are present in this crunchy celery. 

Spinach – Spinach is loaded with nutrients like calcium, folic acid,  Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, iron, copper, potassium, manganese, phosphorus, protein, and many others. 

Kale – Kale has many of the same essential dental health benefits as spinach and promotes oral health. But kale has the bonus of being hip and trendy. You cannot stomach the raw leaves in a salad. So you need to cook it, so find some interesting, healthy recipes online.

Cabbage – High in Vitamins C and K, this all time favorite is also high in fiber and antioxidants known as glucosinolates. Cabbage is believed to aid in disease suppression throughout your body.

Chard – Just one single cup of Swiss chard can provide you more than three times the recommended daily requirement of vitamin K. Chard can also lower blood pressure which is excellent for your oral health. 

Asparagus – These green sticks do not look too attractive. But they are brimming with fiber, phosphorus, folate,  potassium, and vitamins A, C, E, and K. 

If you take just half a cup of cooked asparagus it can give you 57% of your recommended daily intake of Vitamin K. Asparagus is also known for its micronutrient value, including iron, zinc, and riboflavin.

Carrots – These orange root vegetables are packed with beta carotene and are super fibrous. That is why they are so popular and form an integral part of any diet plan. 

But besides this list of vegetables, you should keep in mind that plenty of other green food items from green tea to green apples, can also pack an oral health punch. 

A healthier mouth, a nicer smile, and better breath – they are all just a dentist’s visit away. But you should know when to make the appointment. 

Green Vegetables and Good Oral Health

Good oral health is essential as it enhances your ability to speak, smile, eat, and show your emotions through facial expressions. Any preventive oral health habits such as good oral hygiene and regular dental care, if developed early in life can lead to a healthy person.

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Good oral health is very important throughout your life. It is indeed true that oral health has improved over the past several decades but still a sizable number of people go without basic dental care. This has led to greater rates of oral diseases.  

From tooth decay, gum disease, to oral cancer, oral diseases still cause significant pain and hardship for many people. Particularly those individuals lacking access to care and preventive services. 

One should have access to affordable, preventive dental care in order to decrease disparities in oral health. Early prevention and early intervention in early childhood and adolescent years are very important for your future. If you lose teeth, it may have many implications on your overall well-being as it would continue throughout your life.

Leafy green vegetables can also promote healthy oral bacteria. Their fibrous leaves can keep your teeth and gums clean and stimulate saliva production.  Moreover, it can enrich your saliva with minerals to help keep your tooth enamel strong. 

Are you eating the recommended amount of fresh fruits and green vegetables for your smile every day? If you get the right nutrients in your diet and maintain your oral hygiene, you can maintain your beautiful and healthy smile to impress your dentist at your next check-up.