One of the most important nutrients in keeping your teeth strong and healthy is calcium. So it makes sense that food containing calcium is more healthy for your teeth than food that doesn’t.
However, teeth are not bones, and even though you’ve always heard the saying calcium helps to improve bone health, that’s not why it works on teeth. Teeth are actually made of calcium, as well as other things like phosphorus.
Teeth are so hard because of their enamel, and the consumption of enough calcium strengthens tooth enamel. This is important because once enamel is lost it can’t be regrown.
The American Dental Association suggests 1,000 - 2,000 mg of calcium per day to maintain tooth enamel health. To many, these numbers don’t mean much without context. So what kind of food can you the amount of calcium you need to maintain healthy, strong teeth?
Of course, your general dairy foods are high in calcium, such as yogurt, cheese, milk. But there are also plenty of other foods with calcium that you may not expect.
Vegetables like spinach and collard greens are high in calcium and can help to promote strong teeth. Canned fish is also high in calcium due to the soft fish bones that are contained in the canning process.
If you like tofu you’re in luck, as tofu is high in calcium as well, containing 253mg per half cup. Tofu is a versatile food that typically takes on the flavor of whatever it’s cooked with.
Some products are fortified with additional calcium like orange juice. This is a great option as orange juice also contains plenty of other healthy nutrients like vitamin C and antioxidants.
Next time you’re planning your meal remember to include a food with good calcium content to help keep your teeth healthy.