Intermittent fasting can prevent tooth decay; know benefits | Health - Hindustan Times
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Intermittent fasting can prevent tooth decay, improve dental health; know all benefits from experts

By, New Delhi
Apr 24, 2023 11:07 AM IST

Low calorie diets or intermittent fasting can work wonders for the dental and gum health. Experts on benefits of fasting for your teeth.

Intermittent fasting has many benefits for your overall well-being from cardiovascular health, reducing inflammation, liver health and burning fat. No wonder, many people are trying this diet for weight loss and lowering cholesterol. However, one unexpected benefit of intermittent fasting could be that it helps control dental inflammation. When not fasting, we are snacking in between the meals, and since the snacks may have high amounts of sugar in them, they can affect dental and gum health. Fasting for long periods can neutralise the PH of the saliva which becomes acidic due to all the sugar intake and can lead to fewer cavities. However, do not forget to brush your teeth and gargle during intermittent fasting to reap full benefits of it for your teeth. (Also read: Can brushing teeth more reduce diabetes risk?)

We are all used to snacking frequently with sugar filled foods which makes us prone to cavities, especially when combined with poor oral hygiene. (Freepik)
We are all used to snacking frequently with sugar filled foods which makes us prone to cavities, especially when combined with poor oral hygiene. (Freepik)

"Fasting, along with its overall positive health impact has definitely shown a lot of benefits on oral health too. We are all used to snacking frequently with sugar filled foods which makes us prone to cavities, especially when combined with poor oral hygiene. The biggest benefit of fasting is usually the frequent snacking that gets cut down, leading to lesser impact from sugary foods. This not only neutralises the ph of your saliva which is quite acidic due to sugar intake but also leads to fewer cavities. Fasting for a long period can lead to an overall change in the salivary microbes and can alter the biochemistry of the saliva, leading to lowered glucose levels in the mouth," says Dr Namrata Jadwani, Celebrity Cosmetic Dentist, Prosthodontist and Entrepreneur.

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"While the regular methods of oral hygiene like brushing twice a day, flossing, brushing your tongue are very popular. There is one tip for excellent dental health that not many people know about and that is fasting. Eating three meals a day with in- between snacking leads to combination of high fat meals and simple carbs. The acidity levels in the mouth increase due to sugary and starchy foods. More sugar leads to more acid formation leading to lower PH that can be detrimental to your oral health. These by-products in the crevices of the teeth are difficult to reach with normal brushing. These conditions are conducive for bacteria growth and destroy the natural enamel of the teeth leading to cavities and gum diseases," says Dr. Karishma Jaradi, Head Dental Surgeon - Dentzz.

Studies prove that low calorie diets or intermittent fasting is a boon for dental inflammation and gum health. Fasting can cure chronic dental diseases and improve the bone health of the mouth.

"Regular periods of fasting reduce inflammation, gum diseases and several other health disorders. Reduced food intake and snacking alter the biochemistry of the saliva leading to lower glucose levels of the mouth. This eventually reduces the risk of decay and helps in balancing the pH of your mouth," says Dr Jaradi.

"For impeccable oral health, brushing is an absolute must during the fast and contrary to what many people believe it does not break the fast. Fasting combined with brushing and gargling boosts oral health and hygiene," she concludes.

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