Everyone is familiar with the idiom “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”; apples indeed are a great source of vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant and can even help fight cancer. Researchers from Cornell's Food Science and Toxicology Department in Ithaca, N.Y. determined that you can find the equivalent of 1,500 milligrams of vitamin C in a fresh apple. And it gets better.
Eating fresh apples keeps the dentist away too!
If you love apples, I am sure you will find this piece of news fabulous but of course, you might wonder still how you can be that lucky.
Apples are great for both your teeth and your gums.
It is one of the rare foods, just like carrots and leafy greens (like kale and spinach) that actually clean the surface of your teeth as you eat them.
Apples are full of fibers, which clean teeth by acting as a natural toothbrush and scrubbing away plaque from them and removing other food debris.
Be sure to leave the skin on the apple, since it is packed with the mouth-healthy fiber that helps keep your teeth clean. The apple skin can even remove superficial stains on your teeth just like a toothbrush would. The skin is also the place where you have a lot of good stuff for your overall health, so it brings a double benefit.
Apples are also great for reinforcing and cleaning your gums as it shakes up the plaque that clings to your gums.
Apples keep bad-breath at bay too
The fiber in apples also helps remove traces of plaque that linger in the back of your tongue and throat that produce bad breath.
Eating an apple lowers the pH in your mouth since its pH level is 3.33-4.00, which is considered acidic per the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Neutral pH is at 7, anything above is alkaline and anything below acidic, just like a lemon or an apple for that matter. And it is this acidity that contributes to eliminating any bad bacteria that produce bad breath.
If it’s too good to be true, …
Now, the bad news about the good news is that this same helpful acidity is detrimental to the enamel of your tooth. Although the enamel is a very hard material, it gets eaten away by this acidity over time and a phenomenon known as dental erosion starts; leaving your teeth weak and subject to cavities, discoloration, …
And of course, we cannot forget that apples also have a high content of sugar, that needless to say is not that great for teeth.
… It might still be true
Do not stop smiling just yet… you can still enjoy the benefits of apple eating. You only need to follow a few simple steps as the negative effects of apple eating can be easily prevented.
- Rinse your mouth after eating an apple to dilute the acidity in your mouth caused by it.
- Wait at least 30 min. after eating an apple to brush your teeth, giving time to your enamel to readjust.
- Eat cheese at the same time as it helps protect your teeth as you eat your apple. Cheese is high in calcium, which helps enamel remineralize, and it raises the mouth pH and increases saliva production, which helps neutralize pH as well. Cheese also contains a protein called Casein, which also strengthen tooth enamel.
- And definitely, when you eat an apple as a snack or fruit, eat it in one sitting, since grazing leaves your teeth exposed to the acidity and sugar over a prolonged period of time, which is more damaging.
Treat your teeth to a healthy lunch with a nice kale or spinach wrap with some shredded carrots in there, delicious apple slices and cheese! Just follow our quick and simple recipe below.
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup thinly sliced Granny Smith apple
1 cup hummus
1 cup packed baby spinach or kale
2 spinach tortilla wraps (12-inch)
- Divide evenly the hummus and spread it on the 2 tortilla wraps, leaving a 2-inch border.
- Arrange the ingredients (shredded carrots, Granny Smith apple slices, baby spinach or kale, shredded cheese) evenly in the center of the wrap. Make sure layer is not too thick for easy folding.
- Fold in sides about 1 inch, then roll tightly from one of the open ends to enclose the filling. Make sure the filling stays even as you roll.
- Wrap in waxed or parchment paper, if desired, then wrap in plastic.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve. Do not keep more than a few hours or overnight maximum.