Popsicles, ice cream, hot dogs, and slushies… those might be the typical foods you think of when you imagine summertime. While there’s nothing wrong with enjoying summertime treats in moderation, you know that they’ll do a number on your teeth (and your waistline!) if you eat them unchecked. Take a look at this list of healthy summertime foods and beverages that are not only diet-friendly, but also tooth-friendly!
Before you go make yourself a tall glass of sweet tea, note that iced tea made with either green or black tea and no sugar (though you can use artificial sweeteners) is the kind that is good for your teeth. Tea contains substances called polyphenols, which slow bacterial growth and can help reduce gum inflammation and tooth decay. While water is probably the tooth-friendliest beverage, feel free to mix things up with sugar-free iced tea to help yourself avoid sticky, sugary drinks like colas and sweet teas.
Raw Fruits and Veggies
What tastes better on a hot summer day than a raw salad or some berries and melon? Not only will these foods keep you cool, but they’ll also provide some nice friction as you chew, disrupting the formation of plaque and scrubbing away bacteria. If you’re eating fruit, you will want to keep an eye on the sugar content, but strawberries and apples in particular are great for your teeth.
While you might think that you need to skip the frozen concoctions, yogurt, cheese, and even ice cream can help strengthen your teeth. They contain calcium and vitamin D, both of which are vital for healthy, strong teeth. If you go out for the froyo, do be aware that you need to avoid the sticky, sugary toppings (and don’t forget to brush well afterward!).
While you’re not likely to snack on parsley, it’s a good addition to your summertime herb garden! Parsley can freshen breath and has been known for many years to be an antibacterial herb. Go ahead and sprinkle it on your salads, soups, and entrees for flavor and to help keep bacteria at bay.
Of course, the main thing you need to do for strong, healthy teeth in the summer is brush and floss well, no matter what you’re eating. Also, summertime is a great time to get yourself and your kids in to the dentist for a cleaning if you’re due. Give us a call to schedule your next appointment!
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