High-Fiber Diet May Promote Healthy Gums
A diet rich in high-fiber foodswhich include whole grains, vegetables and fruitmay help prevent gum disease as you age, new research suggests. Researchers found that men age 65 and older who ate more high-fiber foods, especially fruits, were 12 percent less likely to lose teeth from gum disease than men who ate fewer high-fiber fruits.
Experts recommend eating at least 25 grams of fiber a day to reap its maximum health benefits. Other benefits of a high-fiber diet include include lowering cholesterol, better blood sugar control and weight loss.
How to Increase Your Dietary Fiber
To add fiber to your diet, eat plenty of these 10 fruits, vegetables and whole grains. They all pack a fiber punch!
- Baked beans, plain1/2 cup, 5.2 grams of fiber
- Broccoli1 cup, 5.1 grams of fiber
- Sweet potato, skin on1 whole, 4.8 grams of fiber
- Raspberries1/2 cup, 4.0 grams of fiber
- Banana1 whole, 3.1 grams of fiber
- Orange1 whole, 3.1 grams of fiber
- Cooked oatmeal1 packet, 3.0 grams of fiber
- Whole wheat bread1 slice, 2.8 grams of fiber
- Green peas1/2 cup, 2.5 grams of fiber
- Spinach, cooked1/2 cup, 2.2 grams of fiber
To make sure your grin stays picture-perfect, New York cosmetic dentist Jennifer Jablow, D.D.S., recommends these three foods and drinks:
- ApplesThe fibrous texture acts as a natural toothbrush, while the malic acid gently dissolves stains.
- YogurtProbiotics can help fight gum disease.
- Fatty fishThe omega-3 fatty acids in fish such as salmon help reduce inflammation, a hallmark of gum disease.
Adapted from our sister publications Diabetes Focus (Summer 2012) and REMEDY's Healthy Living (Winter 2012)