Milk is packed with calcium, a mineral that is naturally stored in the teeth and bones.
When it comes to maintaining your oral health, proper nutrition plays an important role. By making good dietary choices — and limiting your consumption of sugary and acidic foods and drinks — it is often possible to keep serious issues at bay. One of the best additions to a balanced diet (for the sake of your teeth) is milk. Read on to find out how milk and other dairy products could benefit your smile…
How much milk is recommended?
According to the Australian Dietary Guidelines, which were developed by the National Health and Medical Research Council, adults between the ages of 19 and 50 years old should try to consume two and a half servings of milk, cheese, yoghurt and/or alternatives every day. Older adults (and women in particular) require additional servings to help maintain muscle mass and strength. A serving of milk is 250ml or one cup, and can include any type of milk, such as regular or reduced-fat varieties, UHT long life, evaporated or powdered milk. A serving of cheese is 40g (around two slices) of hard cheese or half a cup of ricotta cheese.
Why is milk good for your teeth?
Milk and other dairy products contain calcium, a mineral that plays an important role in many of the body’s essential metabolic processes. Calcium is naturally stored in the teeth and bones, and is actually the most abundant mineral in the body.
Calcium-rich foods like milk are good for the teeth because they contain casein proteins, which form a protective layer on the surface of the teeth and help to protect the enamel from decay. Milk and other dairy products also contain minerals that help to repair damage to the teeth, and because they are generally pH-neutral, they help to neutralise the effects of sugary and acidic foods and drinks. Dairy products also promote the production of saliva, a substance that plays an important part in keeping the mouth clean and healthy.
How can you include more calcium in your diet?
The easiest way to consume your recommended daily amount of calcium is to include milk and other dairy products in your diet. Some of the best sources of calcium include yoghurt, cheese and buttermilk.
If you are not able to drink cow’s milk, you can get your fix of calcium in calcium-fortified soy milk instead. Other non-dairy sources of calcium include dark, leafy greens like kale and spinach; canned salmon; figs; and calcium-fortified juices and cereals.
Even if you include plenty of calcium-rich foods in your diet, it is important to remember that there is no substitute for proper oral hygiene. To keep your teeth and gums in good condition, be sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush, and to floss daily. It’s also advisable that you see your dentist for regular check-ups and cleans so that any issues can be identified and resolved as early as possible.
How can we help?
At Armidale Dental Care, we care about our patients’ oral and overall health, which is why we always encourage proper oral hygiene habits, as well as a balanced diet. Our team is available to address any questions that you might have regarding your lifestyle and its effect on your smile. If it’s been a while since your last visit, please don’t hesitate to come in and see us so that we can discuss any concerns that you have, and perform a thorough check-up and clean.
To find out more about the full range of services that we offer, please have a look here. If you would like to make an appointment to see us, please don’t hesitate to get in touch here or give us a call on (02) 6772 9386.