This time of year, you likely have turkey and pumpkin pie on the brain, but Thanksgiving dinner also comes along with its share of guilt. Those comfort foods, like marshmallow-topped yams and pecan pie, aren’t exactly health foods. That said, as far as your teeth are concerned, you can feel good about quite a few items on your Thanksgiving table spread due to their oral health benefits. Here are the Thanksgiving foods your teeth with love.
Okay, okay, so it’s not everyone’s favorite part of the dinner, but that veggie/relish tray is worth partaking. That’s because veggies contain a lot of fiber, which is great for your overall health. And with their natural crunch, they serve as a natural cleanser for your teeth. Stock up on veggies prior to dinner and you’ll be less likely to overindulge in sugary or carbohydrate-rich options.
While they’re often topped with marshmallows or brown sugar, eating yams in their natural form (or even with a little butter and cinnamon) is a great way to get a big dose of nutrients in a super delicious way. Without all the sugary toppings, yams won’t stick to your teeth and create tartar buildup, so indulge – naturally!
With all Thanksgiving’s heavy, oven-cooked dishes, a fruit bowl comes as a welcome and refreshing addition. And your teeth will love an array of apple slices, berries and other crunchy varieties. Just like veggies, fruits provide a lot of fiber and naturally clean your teeth. With a little lightly sweetened cream, they even make a great dessert. Cranberry sauce is a great choice – especially if you make it yourself and substitute the sugar for xylitol, which naturally protects your teeth.
The star of the show is also very teeth-friendly. Protein is vital in improving the strength of your teeth and jaw. And lean proteins, like turkey, pack a whole lot of protein without a lot of extra fat and calories. Have a double serving!
What’s your favorite Thanksgiving food?