Healthy Diets and Your Teeth

Did you know that even a ‘healthy’ diet can cause oral health problems?

When we think of a healthy diet, we generally mean one that is relatively low in fat, and certainly saturated fat, but high in fresh fruits and vegetable. Sugar and too many carbohydrates are also usually ruled out too.

Although there is general agreement that this does constitute a healthy diet, is this also the case when it comes to our oral health?


Increasingly, sugar is seen as one of the major causes of health problems in the UK, with many health specialists arguing that it is even more of a problem than fat in our diet. Certainly, from a dental perspective, the elimination or at least, reduction, of sugar can only be a good thing as it is a major cause of dental decay, something that we see too much of at our Bristol dental practice.

Even when we cut sugar from our diet though, many of us still crave sweetness from time to time and may turn to healthier natural alternatives such as honey. Whilst this is rich in B vitamins though, it is still a sugar and will cause the same damage to teeth as sugar itself does.

An apple a day

May keep the doctor away and is certainly much healthier than sugar when it comes to energy and satisfying our desires for sweetness. Again though, an apple, and all other fruits, do contain natural sugars which can damage the enamel of our teeth.

Unfortunately there is no getting away from the fact that if we enjoy sweet foods, as most of us do at least on occasion, then we must also ensure that we keep up a good dental health regime with brushing and flossing on a regular basis – even if our diet is primarily made up of ‘healthy’ foods.

At Beau Monde Dental Care in Bristol, we sometimes do see patients who, whilst eating healthily and exercising, have neglected to follow a good teeth cleaning regime, especially leaving flossing out of the equation. Despite the fact that flossing can be a little tricky to master, perseverance is well worth it as it is a highly effective tool against dental decay and gum disease.

Nuts and vegetables

Let’s presume for a minute though that we do eliminate all sugars from our diet. Whilst this would have many positive benefits to our health, we do still have to eat.

Even healthy ‘no sugar’ foods though such as chicken, fish, nuts and vegetables are not problem free when it comes to the health of our teeth and gums. Nuts especially can cause breakages to the teeth if a rogue piece of shell is present so care is also needed there. And of course it should go without saying – never try to break the shell of a nut with your teeth!

More generally though, all food items that we eat will lead to small pieces becoming trapped between our teeth. Over a period of time, these will begin to degrade, supporting the bacteria that feed on them.

The most likely initial indication of this is a smelly breath, or halitosis. Left for too long though and this is likely to lead to gingivitis, or gum disease; an issue that can lead to a loss of teeth if not treated by your local dentist.

Essentially then, if we eat, we must clean. Our dental team at Beau Monde Dental Care are always happy to offer advice to our patients on any aspect of oral health care and can discuss these with you during your regular check ups.

If you have not seen us for a while, perhaps due to missing an appointment due to ill health or just too busy, and wish to arrange a visit, please call us on 0117 330 3495. There’s no time like the present to get your oral health back on track.