Are Processed Foods Worse for Your Teeth Than Unprocessed?

June 1, 2019 Published by Leave your thoughts

Are you concerned about how your diet affects your oral health? If you eat a lot of processed foods you may want to reconsider your food choices. Here, we’ll explain why processed foods are worse for your teeth than unprocessed.

Photo of cereal bowl

Processed Foods Contain a Lot of Sugar

Sugar is one of the worst things for your teeth. A diet high in sugar often means a mouth filled with cavities. Most processed foods add a lot of sugar because these foods are designed by food scientists to be delicious, and that often means more sugar in places you may not even realize. Cereal, for example, is often incredibly high in sugar. You don’t want to start your day with a bunch of sugar! Instead, try foods like oatmeal or eggs, where you can control where you get the oats and eggs.

Processed Foods Are Made to Be Addictive

Research has shown that foods like chips are made to be addictive and that snacking on them actually lights up the brain similar to ways that drug use affects the brain. They overstimulate the production of dopamine which can lead to more and more snacking and even tricking your mind into thinking it’s still hungry. If you’re looking for something crunchy, switch out the chips for raw veggies and hummus.

A Diet High in Processed Foods Often Means More Cavities

Processed foods are high in sugar and carbohydrates and when you eat foods like candy or chips, you are putting your oral health at risk. When food particles from sugary and starchy foods are left on your teeth, the bacteria in your mouth feed on them to form acids that destroy your enamel.

Processed Foods Often Don’t Have the Vitamins & Minerals Your Teeth Need

The best foods for your teeth are ones that are found in nature. Foods like carrots, celery, leafy greens, berries, apples, milk, fish, and nuts are high in nutrients like fiber, vitamin A and vitamin C, protein, calcium, and more which are vital to your oral health. These nutrients add necessary minerals back into your enamel to make it stronger and increase your salivary flow which also helps with remineralization and to clean out your mouth. Processed foods just often do not contain these elements that are necessary for your oral health.

If you have any other questions about how your diet affects your oral health, give us a call!

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