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Did you know that your diet can put you at risk for cavities, diabetes, heart disease and stroke? No matter what your age, your oral health impacts your overall health and well-being. When your mouth is healthy, it allows you to eat the healthy foods necessary for a healthy body. And when your body is healthy, your social interactions with others and consequently your self-esteem also gets a boost.

Conversely, the mouth also indicates issues with your body. For example, having lesions in the mouth can suggest ulcers, HIV infection, Crohn’s disease or Celiac disease. If your gums are bleeding or pale, this may mean you have a blood disorder, while lower jaw bone loss may signal osteoporosis.

The health of your mouth impacts the body as well. If you have an infection in the mouth from oral bacteria, this can travel through the bloodstream and lower your immune system. Periodontal disease (a severe infection of the gums) can impact your body and make you more susceptible to cancers and heart disease.

Eating a balanced diet from the five major food groups, along with staying hydrated with plenty of water, will benefit your mouth and body. Whole grains, vegetables, fruits, low-fat dairy and lean protein are ideal. Avoid foods that have lots of sugar, such as sodas, sticky candies, cookies, and pastries which can cause cavities, obesity, and diabetes. Foods that are made from white flour and simple starches, including chips, bread, pasta or crackers should be limited.

To make the most of your oral and overall health, stick to nutritious foods and watch out for those that can harm your smile and your body.

At St. Paul Family Dentistry in St. Paul, Minnesota, we invite you to give our team a call at 651.488.5522 if you would like more information about how to take the best care of your smile. Our dentists, Drs. Joseph, David Opack, and Dr. Peter Stanton are here to help you maintain a healthy, happy smile!