Are carrots good for your eyes and teeth? Remember your parents telling you to eat carrots because they are good for your eyes? Well, they are, and they are good for your teeth, too. Who would have guessed that that funny shaped, bright orange, crispy, crunchy vegetable that grows upside down in the dirt could have so many health benefits? There are a few ways that carrots help your teeth, in fact. Read on to find out how to protect your eyes and teeth with carrots.
Are Carrots good for your eyes?
When your parents told you carrots were good for your eyesight they were right. They may not have known why, but they knew what they were talking about when they told you to eat carrots. Carrots are good for your eyes because they contain Beta-carotene which is a type of vitamin A. Beta-carotene gives foods their orange color and helps the retina and other parts of your eyes to function properly. Vitamin A also linked to improved vision at night. Vitamin A is one of the main building blocks of the night vision pigments in your eyes. A vitamin A deficiency can lead to night blindness. Night blindness is the problem or difficulty of adjusting your vision to low levels of light.
Beta carotene and lutein are antioxidants that help eye health by offering protection from the damage caused by free radicals. It is thought that the free radicals are the main culprits of the age-related macular degeneration and problems of cataracts of your eyes. Carrots have a lot of lutein in them which is good for fighting macular degeneration (AMD) in your 70s and 80s. Having a diet rich with carrots is considered also a good preventative measure against the age-related eye problem of cataracts.
It is important to note that carrots are not a treatment for eye problems but are a rich source of nutrients that supports eye health.
Carrots good for your teeth
The vitamin A in carrots not only helps your eyes, it helps your teeth too. Vitamin A helps build tooth enamel. The act of eating a raw carrot is beneficial to your teeth because as you chew it, it encourages the production of saliva which is your mouth’s natural cleanser. Saliva washes away food debris, sugars and pathogenic bacteria that feed on the sugars and debris and produce enamel eating acids as a result. Carrots also cleanse your teeth as you bite into and chew them. Their hard, crunchy texture scrubs your teeth and gums.
The bottom line is that carrots are good for your eyes and overall health
A steady diet of carrots will maintain healthy vision and improve your eyesight. Carrots are high in fiber and help digestion. This fiber-rich vegetable reduces constipation and lessens the likelihood of colon cancer. They are rich in lycopene also. Lycopene is another antioxidant that is good for heart health.
What other foods are good for your oral health?
Several foods top our list of teeth-friendly foods. And for different reasons. Some plants aid in the removal of plaque and tartar. Other food items help remineralize teeth. We really are what we eat. If you indulge in sugary foods, you are placing yourself at risk for developing tooth decay.
According to a 2013 study published in the American Academy of General Dentistry, eating cheese raises the pH balance of patients’ mouths and lowers their risk of tooth decay. The chewing that’s required to eat cheese also promotes saliva production. One final benefit of cheese is the tooth-friendly nutrients that can strengthen tooth enamel. Yogurt is also high in calcium. The probiotics (beneficial bacteria) found in yogurt products helps to crowd out bad bacteria. If you do eat yogurt, try to avoid sugary varieties.
Cheese is rich in vitamin A. Deficiencies in vitamin A are the leading cause of blindness in poor countries. Cheese has a lot of vitamin A and also is very good for your teeth. It has higher levels of calcium and phosphates which are good for your enamel. A more neutral pH helps the saliva prevent cavities. Cheese is wonderful but it has a few more calories than carrots do.
All that nagging from your parents to “eat your greens” turns out to be great oral hygiene advice. Leafy greens are full of vitamins and minerals. Kale and spinach are high in calcium, which builds your enamel. If you don’t like leafy greens, try getting creative. Adding kale to smoothies or as a topping for pizza can promote oral health.
Most of us don’t salivate at the thought of eating celery. The vegetable acts like a toothbrush, scraping bacteria and food particles from your teeth. It’s also a good source of antioxidants that are healthy for gums.
Almonds made our list because they have plenty of calcium while being low in sugar. Almonds are easy to fit into any meal, or they can be enjoyed as a between-meal snack!
An apple a day won’t keep the doctor away, but it may help cut back on dental costs. Apples are sweet, but the fruits are also high in fiber and water. Chewing apples promotes the production of saliva, which rids the mouth of food particles and bacteria. Apples can replace unhealthy snacks, like candy bars and donuts. So stock up apples and enjoy a guilt-free snack.
Carrots ARE good for your teeth!
Aside from providing dependable general and restorative dentistry services to our community, Dr. James Fondriest also holds respected academic appointments at the Pankey Institute in Key Biscayne, FL, and the Spear Institute in Scottsdale, AZ, and he is a former adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Prosthodontics at the University of Florida Dental School.
At Lake Forest Dental Arts, Dr. Fondriest combines his impressive array of experience with modern technology and caring, compassionate, knowledgeable staff. We proudly serve patients from Chicago and all surrounding communities. To schedule a consultation, call our office today at (847) 234-0517.