Tips for Packing Teeth-Friendly Lunch-Box Snacks

Tips for Packing Teeth-Friendly Lunch-Box Snacks
Posted on 05/18/2018

blog18may2018Optimal dental care is more complex than brushing your teeth, flossing, and swishing with mouthwash. Yes, these daily habits are very important to teach your children, but their diet can also play a big role in their oral health. Teach your children to make food choices that are healthy for their teeth and gums.

The simplest way to get kids to love food that's great for their dental health is to simply introduce these foods into their diet. They are sure to naturally love several healthy foods. Once you determine the healthy foods they enjoy, pack teeth-friendly snacks for kids when they go to school or day care.

Replace Chips With Crispy Veggies

Many children like a little side order with a sandwich. Kids also love crunchy snacks. However, you don't have to grab processed food like chips and cheese curls to give children a filling, tasty snack with a satisfying crunch. Instead, chop a variety of crunchy vegetables into bite-sized pieces. Then grab a paper or plastic sealable bag and stuff it with the chopped vegetables.

Raw vegetables that you can easily chop include celery, carrots, and cauliflower. Get kids excited about the snacks by taking them to the grocery store and letting them choose the colorful veggies they want included in the mix. You may be pleasantly surprised at the new vegetables kids are willing to try when they pick them out.

Crispy vegetables help protect kids' dental health in multiple ways. They are typically nutritionally dense. Also, the crunchy, raw vegetables can help naturally scrape dental plaque and other built-up food particles away from teeth.

Having a small, conveniently bagged snack on hand can be fun and help kids feel like they are fitting in with friends who also have bagged snacks. The fact that your kids' snack bags will be full of nutritious veggies may not even occur to them as they're simply enjoying the taste.

Add a Colorful Salad

A side salad may not be every kid's idea of a fun meal, but many children do love salads. They may especially enjoy them if they see parents and teachers consuming them, and they may associate eating salad with being grown up. That's how you may approach talking to kids about eating salads, too.

Use dark, leafy greens as the base for the salad. Not only are dark, leafy greens like spinach and kale full of nutrients that are teeth-friendly, but they also are flavorful. Think outside the box and add things your kids love to the salad. Add slivered almonds, sliced hardboiled eggs, and crispy noodles. You may even include apple slices to the salad for a sweet kick if your children love apples.

When packing salads for your kids, place a small serving of dressing on the side. Some kids may decide they don't want the dressing. Also, placing it on the side will prevent the salad from getting soggy while your kids are in class. Encourage kids to dip bites of the salad in the dressing instead of pouring the dressing over the salad. This technique makes it easier to control the amount of dressing.

Offer Plant-Based Milks in Thermoses

Put plant-based milks in thermoses you pack along with your kids' lunch boxes. Plant-based milks such as cashew milk, flax milk, soy milk, rice milk, and almond milk are delicious and nutritious. Give kids variety by offering differently flavored milks on separate days. Plant-based milks offer numerous health benefits.

Many plant-based milks contain calcium either naturally or by being fortified. In fact, a serving of plant-based milk typically has more calcium than a serving of dairy milk. Calcium helps kids build strong teeth and bones. Since the body needs Vitamin D to absorb calcium, choosing plant-based milks fortified with both calcium and Vitamin D is a great idea.

If your children aren't crazy about drinking milk, that's okay. The same nutritional benefits can typically be enjoyed by eating plant-based yogurts. You may pack plant-based yogurt as a snack in your kids' lunch box. If they want to mix something with it, add a little granola or oatmeal on the side with the yogurt to give it an interesting taste and texture.

Make Your Own Trail Mix

Nuts and seeds are great for teeth, so combine them in many ways to create tasty snack mixes. Many kids will delight in finding homemade trail mix in their lunch boxes. Since other kids can easily identify trail mix as a familiar snack, that can be a good choice for children who may feel self-conscious about eating a healthy diet while their peers indulge in junk.

Finally, contact Dentistry for Children & Adolescents for your children's next dental appointments. We happily accept patients of all ages, including those with special needs. Ensuring that your children receive regular care from a dentist can go a long way towards helping them achieve long-term dental health.

DentistryforChildren&Adolescents

Dentistry for Children & Adolescents

  • Edina Office - 7373 France Ave. S., Suite 402, Edina, MN 55435 Phone: 952-831-4400
  • Burnsville Office - 14050 Nicollet Ave. S., Suite 100, Burnsville, MN 55337 Phone: 952-435-4102
  • Minnetonka Office - 6060 Clearwater Dr., Suite 210, Minnetonka, MN 55343 Phone: 952-932-0920

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