November 21, 2020
The holiday season is finally here which means that you’re likely to be catching up with relatives, listening to festive music, and enjoying some delicious meals. For many families, a popular side dish to enjoy is cranberry sauce, but are cranberries good for your teeth? As delicious as it is, you don’t want to be starting the new year with cavities. Continue reading to learn more from your dentist about cranberries and the effect that they have on your oral health.
How Do Cranberries Affect Your Oral Health?
Cranberries have a delicious tart flavor that so many people enjoy. The good news is that the fruit has many different benefits for both your body and your oral health. They are often considered a superfood because of their high nutrient and antioxidant content. In addition to lowering your risk for urinary tract infections, cranberries are also said to lower your risk of certain cancers, improve your immune system function, and even lower your blood pressure. Here are just a few of the ways that they affect your oral health:
- Cranberries contain Proanthocyanidins which prevents bacteria from binding together.
- Cranberry juice reduces plaque buildup by up to 95%. This is because it reduces the sugars in your mouth which makes it more difficult for acids to generate. Overall, it will decrease the amount of damage that your tooth enamel endures.
- Cranberries reduce your risk of gum disease because they limit the ability for periodontal disease-causing bacteria to stick to your teeth and gums. They also cut down on the amino acids that the bacteria survive on.
Is Cranberry Sauce Good for Your Teeth?
For many people, Thanksgiving dinner is not complete without cranberry sauce. Even though cranberries have great benefits for your teeth, all of the added sugar in cranberry sauce does not. This is because sugar turns to acid in the mouth which softens the protective enamel which leave teeth more vulnerable to decay. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying cranberry sauce with your dinner, but it is best to avoid the canned ones. Instead, try to find a recipe that uses fresh cranberries. This way, you can control the amount of sugar being added. This way, you can enjoy the sauce without having to worry as much about the negative effects it can have on your teeth.
Even though cranberries have their benefits, it is important to be careful when it comes to sugar consumption. By watching what you are eating and going to the dentist regularly for cleanings and checkups, you will be able to come out of the holiday season without a mouth full of cavities.
About the Author
Dr. Christopher Holland is an experienced dentist who has been working in the field for three decades! He studied at the prestigious University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio and is a member of several professional organizations including the American Dental Association and the Texas Dental Association. For more ways to keep your smile healthy or to schedule an appointment, visit his website or call (210) 804-1558.