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The Best Dairy Foods for Dental Health on 1800Dentist.com

In 1916, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) published the first list of dietary recommendations that evolved to become today's Nutrition Plate. Those guidelines were created to advise citizens on the daily allotment amounts for different food groups and low-fat dairy products have always been included in the mix. Milk, cheese and yogurt are not only delicious treats but a must for those interested in maintaining their dental health. Those mammal by-products should be eaten to ensure that teeth and bones stay in tip-top condition.

Dairy products are rich in vitamins essential for dental health and the right choice can help contribute to an individuals recommended daily calcium intake. According to the USDA children aged two to eight need to consume two cups of moo juice products on a daily basis and everyone else should partake in 3 healthy cups a day. While some may think that the recommendation is part of a conspiracy from the government agency, science has shown that low-fat dairy products are essential to boosting oral health and minimizing conditions such as tooth decay and periodontal disease.

Yogurt Reduces Tooth Decay

In its' natural state milk is a creamy, white liquid. When the fluid is allowed to ferment with the aid of bacteria, yogurt is the magical final product. Cultured milk products including yogurt, have roots tracing back to 2000 B.C. and there are plenty of health benefits to the delight. Yogurt is rich in protein, calcium, riboflavin, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 and the food has been cited for boosting weight loss, treating digestive issues and reducing tooth decay in children.

Japanese researchers conducted a study, which resulted in the proclamation that children who consume low-fat yogurt four times a week have reduced odds of developing cavities than their non-yogurt eating counter parts. The scientist analyzed the diets of 2,000 Japanese children aged 3 years old. Those who ate yogurt with frequency reduced their chances of developing tooth decay by as much as 22 percent.

Dairy Boosts Gum Health

Kids are not the only ones who can benefit from dairy foods as studies have shown that adults that regularly consume healthy milk, yogurt and cheese options experience lower instances of gum disease. In separate research, Japanese scientists measured periodontal pocket depth (PD) and clinical attachment loss (CAL) of gum tissue in 942 subjects aged 40 to 79. Those who reported eating 55 grams or more of dairy products rich in lactic acid had lower levels of deep PD and severe CAL, the greatest indicators in properly diagnosising gum disease.

According to the American Dental Hygienist Association, approximately 75 percent of all Americans unknowingly have some level of gum disease ranging from gingivitis to advanced periodontal disease. If left unchecked, gum disease can spread and cause tooth loss in adults, contribute to heart disease increased risk of stroke, and can add to the woes associated with diabetes, respiratory disease and osteoporosis.

The Best Dairy Products for Oral Health

Individuals interested in adding more health dairy foods to their diets need to choose the food wisely. Supermarket dairy cases are filled with a large selection of yogurts, milks and cheeses and in order to cut through the clutter shoppers should only buy (and consume):

  • Low fat and non-fat dairy options.
  • Unsweetened yogurt devoid of sugar or artificial sweeteners. Greek style yogurts are naturally rich and creamy and parents can add 100 percent fruit jams (sans sweetener), honey and fresh fruit purees to create a delicious and nutritiously dense snack.
  • White milk, as while chocolate milk is delicious, the added sugars can promote tooth decay.
  • Choose natural and organic whenever possible

Vegans and vegetarians who opt to avoid dairy products need to pay special attention to their nutritional needs as they are naturally at a greater risk for developing gum disease.

Aside from eating a nutritious diet, consumers need to conduct their dental care due diligence in order to minimize the odds of developing dental problems. Brushing, flossing and regular dental visits are essential for oral health. Individuals who have yet to find a dentist to boost their oral health can count on 1-800-DENTIST to connect them to a professional up to the task.