The holiday season is sugary sweet, what with all of the cakes, cookies, and candies to be had. But we don’t need to tell you that all of that sugar can wreak havoc on your teeth.
To keep those pearly whites cavity-free as you feast your way through the holidays, consider the following healthy snack ideas that are sure to satisfy.
It’s hard to beat fresh fruit. Snacking on fruit is a fantastic way to satisfy your sweet tooth while getting a nice dose of vital nutrients and fiber. Plus, chewing on certain fruits, such as apples, can even help clean your teeth, thanks to their texture. So, the next time that you’re at a party and there’s a fruit platter, feel free to dig in.
If you’re preparing cute snacks for your guests, consider making the fruit even tastier by dipping some strawberries in dark chocolate. Or get creative by using your fruit to make nifty designs, like trees made from kiwi slices, blackberries, and raspberries1, and snowmen made from bananas, strawberries, and grapes2. Adorable, and so good for you!
When aiming to eat holiday treats that can help you maintain your healthy teeth, you might think that you need to skip the slice of pie. But this isn’t always the case! Pumpkin pie, which is super popular during this time of year, is a great choice because it contains fiber and vitamin A for your gums and enamel. And, if you’re making your own pie at home, you can easily reduce the amount of sugar in the recipe without it affecting the flavor. Extra points if you don’t add any whipped cream to the top!
If cookies are your favorite, you might be a little disappointed to learn that they aren’t really the best choice when it comes to snacks for healthy teeth. But this doesn’t mean that you have to completely give up on snacking on cookies during the holidays. Go with low-sugar recipes so you can control how much you’re getting in every bite. Also, oatmeal cookies can be a tasty substitute for chocolate chip cookies, or you could try low-sugar versions of gingerbread cookies and almond cookies.
Another wise idea is to steer clear of sweets that are sticky and chewy in texture, as they’ll latch onto your teeth and stay around for a while, potentially causing damage to your enamel. Not good!
Tip: Consider subbing sugar with healthier options, like applesauce, whenever you bake.
Thinking about roasting some chestnuts? Go for it! If they aren’t your thing, though, there are plenty of other nuts that you can enjoy during the holidays, and they make the ideal snack because they’re filling and good for your chompers. Packed with nutrients, fiber, and healthy fats, nuts can help stimulate saliva production when you eat them, and that can help cleanse your mouth.
For quick and easy snacking, you can prepare spiced nuts easily at home. As an example, you can choose your favorite nuts and add flavor with ingredients like cayenne, cumin, thyme, allspice, and mustard.
Sure, the holidays come with a slew of tempting foods, which aren’t always the right choice to keep your smile bright. But with some strategy and some self-control, you can stick to those snacks that won’t undo all of the steps that you’ve taken to care for your teeth and gums.
No matter what foods you consume, snack smart by controlling your portions. And don’t forget to schedule an appointment with your dentist. Even though the holiday season can be hectic, it’s also a perfect time for a checkup and cleaning to be sure your teeth are strong and healthy.