Maybe if you are trying to lose weight, pizza is not your first choice. But pizza contains a lot of nutrients that promote healthy teeth. Here’s how:
1. The Cheese. The cheese on pizza contains calcium, a nutrient your body can not produce on its own but a necessary ingredient for tooth maintenance and formation. Milk commercials laud the value of calcium in our diet, and they are right! Eat pizza, get more calcium, and your teeth will thank you. In addition to the dental benefits, if you eat more calcium you will have better saliva production and enzyme activity as well, which contributes to the effectiveness of your body’s digestion, energy, and fat metabolism. Additionally, calcium contributes to blood pressure regulation and water balance by interacting with potassium, sodium, and magnesium in the body. Convinced?
2. The Meat. Cheese has protein, but if you get a pizza with meat on it you boost the protein content by a lot. Your teeth and mouth need protein to maintain their structure. Protein also contributes to immune function and muscle/connective tissue development.
3. The Tomato Sauce. Tomatoes contain large amounts of Vitamin C, and Vitamin C fights infection. If you think infection doesn’t affect your teeth, think again! Periodontal disease, tooth decay, tooth aches, and other common dental emergencies are the result of active infections running amuck in your mouth. Studies have shown that a lack of vitamin C can lead to bleeding gums as well. Finally, the lycopene and calcium also found in tomato sauce have proven effective in preventing oral cancer .
4. The Crust. The chewy or crunchy nature of crust helps stimulate your jaw, contributing to your daily chewing requirement and building facial muscle tone and reducing sugar clearance by increasing salivary flow.
5. The Vitamin B. Vitamin B is found in a lot of ingredients in Pizza, making pizza a good source of Vitamin B. Perhaps the biggest reason you should eat pizza for good teeth is that pizza contains this valuable nutrient. If your body has low levels of Vitamin B, you may begin to experience a burning sensation in your mouth. Additionally, your tongue may feel swollen and make swallowing more difficult. In some cases the tissue of the inner cheeks may become pale and “flaky”, breaking off in the mouth. These are not symptoms of any disease, just evidence of a Vitamin B deficiency that contributes to the maintenance of the mouth and its tissues.
In addition, Pizza contains high levels of fiber (especially when you add vegetables and whole-wheat crust), Vitamin A, and Oregano. Each of these ingredients contribute to oral and systemic health in their own ways, but are more helpful in areas of the body outside of the mouth. Pizza often gets a bad rap as a junk food, but if you are looking for excuses to increase your pizza intake, feel justified that pizza contains a lot of the nutrients necessary for a healthy mouth and healthy body.
Although Platinum Dental Care staff profess no expertise in dietetics, we do know teeth and can help you brighten and perfect yours. Whether you want a picture-perfect smile or just a disease-free one, our dentists in Utah can help. Dr. Chavez, for example, is a dentist in Provo. He loves working with younger patients and their parents, helping children form strong oral habits from an early age. They like to call him the best dentist in Utah, if not the best dentist in Provo.