Everyone seems to rejoice with the sounds, smells, and tastes of the summer. The warm summer nights paired with the sounds of the crickets chirping and the taste of some good barbeque with friends and family are all things that make summer the best season of the year.
When it comes to all the delicious treats we can savor during these wonderful months, some of them are not always the best for our teeth and gums. While we do not want you to sacrifice a delicious summer time meal, we think it is important for you to know which foods are detrimental to your teeth and gums verses which foods promote great oral health.
It is possible to maintain your beautiful, healthy smile while still enjoying all the great ‘tooth-friendly summer foods’ out there.
The acid from the foods we eat can tear away at our teeth, but select dairy products can actually reduce the acid your mouth. Cheese is high in calcium, which makes teeth and bones stronger, but it also contains casein, a protein found in milk that is helpful in fortifying the tooth’s surface.
There are plenty of fresh ways to incorporate cheeses into your summer dining; for instance, this one-pan pasta which includes fresh grated parmesan cheese. Can we say fresco?
Most raw, fresh vegetables are good for your oral health because their fibrous nature requires chewing, which causes an increase in saliva production. Celery is a great tooth-friendly food choice because it helps to clean out the mouth and break down the food for digestion.
The reason celery is so great is because it breaks down into fibrous strands that naturally clean the teeth while chewing. For the best oral benefit, you should eat the celery in a raw state. This fresh salad recipe includes celery in the crisp form, and it can be served as the perfect side dish for some patio dining.
We know that iced tea and soda drinks are always flowing at the family cookouts, but might we suggest a healthier way to quench your thirst that is also good for your oral health? No surprise here, it is water!
The best way to drink water is with a few ice cubes, but if you need something a little more flavorful, try adding some fresh fruits to the water and let it sit for a few hours. Fruit-infused water can be incredibly beneficial to your health as well as your teeth. Serve it up in a nice pitcher, and you are good to go!
Sticking with the fresh fruits and vegetables, we turn to a fruit that is great for oral health: pears. Like celery, pears are fibrous in nature and they stimulate saliva production. Pears are especially beneficial because they have a larger acid neutralizing effect on the tooth’s surface than any other type of fresh fruit.
A great way to incorporate pears into your summer cooking would be to add them into a salad like this Apple-Pear salad. Again, this is another fresh option that would accompany a great grilled entrée or to simply eat as a healthy, summer snack.
You may be wondering why we are suggesting eating onions as they typically give you bad breath after eating them, but have no fear, a toothbrush is near! As far as the benefits go, the onion is known to eliminate bacteria that can cause cavities and gum disease, so go ahead and add a few slices of these to your burger!
Summer time eating does not have to wreak havoc on your oral health. If you stick with healthy foods that are good for your oral health, it will ensure that you have a nice, healthy smile throughout the summer.