Dr. Sarah Kong, your dentist in Dallas, hopes that healthy gums and teeth make it to your list of things to be grateful for this season! The holiday is filled with many food options, many of which are not particularly healthy. The good news is, you can still have a scrumptious feast that is also good for your health.
The University of Rochester Medical Center recommends these foods for healthy teeth:
1. Appetizers: Raw Vegetables, Cheese, and Nuts
While dinner is being prepared, pull out plates of cheese cubes, crudités, plus mixed nuts for your family and friends to snack on. Cheese contains calcium that is strength-building for the teeth. Nuts contain minerals and calcium that remineralizes and strengthens teeth. Casein is a protein mostly found in milk products, and can help fortify the surfaces of teeth.
Chewing on raw vegetables can help with saliva production and will help wash away bacteria. Celery, in particular, has fibrous strands that can help clean between teeth. Chewing crunchy nuts can also help produce extra saliva, helping your mouth fight germs and prevent decay.
2. Main Course: Vegetables in Sesame Oil
Did you know that rinsing your mouth with sesame oil can help reverse the effects of gingivitis and reduce plaque? Sauté your favorite veggies in sesame oil for a healthy and delicious side dish. Top your meal with sesame seeds for an added crunch.
3. Dessert: Fresh Pear Slices
This fruit dessert is simple, yet elegant, and is best paired with a yogurt and honey dip. Slice the pears thinly, then arrange neatly on a platter. Create a dip by mixing two tbsp of honey, one cup of plain Greek yogurt, and a sprinkling of ground cinnamon.
Fresh pears have the ability to neutralize acid on the surface of your teeth. Honey is a natural antiseptic, and the phosphates and calcium found in Greek yogurt can help strengthen teeth.
4. Beverages: Black and Green Tea and Tap Water
Black and green tea can fight cavities by killing bacteria. Tap water contains fluoride which can help reverse acid-causing bacteria. Reap a double benefit by making your tea with tap water.
These Thanksgiving tooth-friendly foods are also great for your heart and waistline! Yes, it is possible to enjoy your Thanksgiving dinner without jeopardizing your smile or putting on weight.
At Dallas Dental Wellness, your dentist in Dallas, TX, we are thankful for our patients. Feel free to call us if you have dental questions or concerns.