Clinician's Corner: Eat this, not that— healthy choices for your Thanksgiving menu

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November 20th, 2020

Since many people are modifying plans or finding alternate ways to celebrate Thanksgiving this year, it might be a good time to switch up your menu. There are many lighter, healthier and more tooth-friendly foods that would make excellent additions or substitutions to your plate.

Seek out these tasty options for a healthier smile:

  • For snacking or appetizers, fresh vegetables are a healthy, crunchy alternative to chips and cookies.
  • Cheese and plain yogurt are healthy choices with many oral and overall health benefits. The high calcium content in these foods helps to keep teeth strong.
  • Fresh fruit (not dried) are rich in vitamins that are essential for teeth and gum health.
  • Different types of nuts can be good sources of phosphorous, vitamins, calcium, iron and more. Nuts are great for snacking and also a fun addition to many types of dishes.
  • Bird is the word— turkey! This Thanksgiving star is a great lean protein with low sugar content that helps to promote oral health.

For other common Thanksgiving menu items, choose wisely:

Be careful with those sweet holiday season drinks like eggnog. They contain a lot of sugar and the alcohol content will dry out your mouth as well, which can cause cavities.

There is no need to avoid all sweets if you would like one. Enjoy a sweet treat or two (we won’t tell) right after your main meal when salivary flow is highest so that sugars will be less likely to stick on your teeth. Have that dessert right after dinner and you can enjoy the taste without causing extra harm to your teeth. After all, many people spend the whole year looking forward to that pumpkin pie!

Once your Thanksgiving meal is through, be sure to stick to your established oral health routine. Brush your teeth twice per day for two minutes with fluoridated toothpaste and floss once a day.

If you want to know the impact a traditional Thanksgiving meal has on your oral health, check out our post from last year by clicking here.

🍂🦃🥧 Happy Thanksgiving! 🥧🦃🍂

This information in this post is for general educational purposes only and does not warrant or represent any information as related to health as specifically appropriate for you. It is not intended to be medical advice or replace the relationship that you have with your health care providers. You should always seek medical advice on any diagnosis or treatment from a qualified health care provider. The information is provided “as is” without any representations or warranties, express or implied.