Dental Care On A Vegan Lifestyle
Many people get confused when it comes to a vegetarian lifestyle as opposed to a vegan lifestyle. Where there are many reasons to choose either, not many people think about dental health when making the choice between the two. The truth of the matter is that the choice of these will have an impact on the health of your teeth.
In this article, we distinguish between the two and explore how to maintain excellent oral health while on a vegan diet.
Vegetarian vs. Vegan Lifestyle
Vegetarian and vegan lifestyles describe different approaches to the consumption of animal proteins. While there is no uniform definition of what constitutes any of these approaches, there are some general patterns that we can use for the purposes of this article. Vegetarians will generally avoid consuming meat but may be open to taking dairy products including milk, eggs, and so on. Some vegetarians will exclude meat and dairy but still consume eggs. For vegans, there is generally a stricter avoidance of most animal proteins. This not only includes meat but also animal by-products such as milk and so on.
The impact of these two lifestyles on your dental health is often reflected in the nutrients that you are taking in. Here are some points to note when thinking of taking up a vegan lifestyle.
Calcium Deficiency is a Possibility
One of the critical nutrients for the health of our teeth and bones is calcium. For many Americans, dairy and egg products are a leading source of calcium. When these are removed as they would be when one turns vegan, it is important to make a deliberate effort to ensure that nutrients such as these are introduced into the diet. This may include seeking plant sources of calcium or taking supplements to augment what is being taken in through food.
Oral Hygiene Still Matters
Typically, a change to a vegan lifestyle is often accompanied by healthier eating habits such as removing sugary drinks and junk food from the diet. While this is a great move, it should not lead to complacency about maintaining a strict oral health regime. Sugar and acids are present in many vegan-acceptable products (such as fruit juices, wines, and so on) and these can still wreak havoc on your teeth. Ensure that you constantly brush your teeth, go for frequent dental exams and eat a balanced diet.
The choice of whether to go vegan or not depends on an individual’s goals. However, be conscious that any nutrients that may affect the health of your teeth and that are removed from your diet are replaced by plant-based alternatives. When all is said and done, the next important thing is to find a great dentist near you. Real Smile dental practice is based in New York City and offers a variety of services including teeth whitening, smile makeovers, cosmetic dentistry, and orthodontics, to name but a few. Contact us for an appointment.