Posted June 07, 2022 in Dental/Oral Health
3 Minute Read:
Keeping our teeth and gums healthy is vital not only for our appearance but also for our overall well-being. The link between the oral bacteria responsible for gum disease and systemic disease has been well-established.
Some of the conditions associated with poor oral health include:
- Heart and lung disease
- Premature birth
Keeping healthy snack options in your home will contribute to a healthy lifestyle and help you and your children maintain a beautiful smile.
The following top five snacks choices for oral health include:
Celery, raw carrots, peppers, and other crisp vegetables are ideal for snacking throughout the day as they help keep teeth clean.
Leafy green vegetables, like spinach, are high in calcium which helps build tooth enamel, and vitamin B to fight gum disease. Introduce these snacks early or chop them up and add them to mashed sweet potatoes (high in fiber) to make them more inviting.
2. Dairy Products
Cheese, milk, and yogurt are excellent snack choices because they contain calcium, which can reduce acidity and fortify teeth.
Yogurt also contains probiotics which are good for gum health and reduce plaque formation. But, be sure to choose yogurt that doesn’t have added sugar.
3. Crisp Fruits
Fruits can be a great snack option, but be careful not to offer fruits that are soft or high in sugar. Crisp apples are ideal for keeping teeth clean, pears help neutralize acidity, and fresh cranberries contain polyphenols that fight plaque.
Strawberries are another great choice as they contain malic acid, a natural tooth whitener.
Using these fruits in a salad with a healthy yogurt dip will have your kids coming back for more.
As long as your child doesn’t have a nut allergy, these are wonderful snack options because they all contain calcium and phosphorus, which reduce bacteria and fight tooth decay. They are also a good source of protein.
The best nuts to stock up on are peanuts, almonds, walnuts, and brazil nuts — these all contain vitamin D, folic acid, fiber, and other essential vitamins that help promote good oral health.
5. Whole Grains
Rather than offering chips or other simple carbohydrate snacks, whole grain snacks like brown rice, some cereals, and pasta contain magnesium which is good for bone health and permanent teeth, as well as B vitamins and iron which are crucial for healthy gums. Whole-grain snacks contain calcium, vitamin C, and minerals such as iron and phosphorus.
Preparation Goes a Long Way
It’s tempting to give kids easy snacks like candy and chips, but these are some of the most damaging snacks for teeth and can keep kids from enjoying healthier options.
Better snack choices are good for the health of your body and your smile, and a beautiful smile can help you and your kids enjoy life with confidence.
Remember to offer plenty of water throughout the day rather than fruit juices and sodas that are acidic and high in sugar.
Water helps rinse the mouth and keep it clean while hydrating the body.
Also, encourage your child to brush their teeth after each meal to instill proper oral health habits.
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