You've spent all summer striving to create breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners that are not only healthy for your child's body but for their oral health as well. With school about to start back, you're worried that their teeth are going to suffer. However, this doesn't have to be the case. If you prepare your child's lunches, you can ensure that they only have tooth-friendly food selections. Here are two excellent snack choices to pair with a turkey or ham sandwich or other healthy lunch option.
Celery Sticks with Almond Butter Butter (and Raisins)
Remember that age-old snack called "ants on a log"? Well, this is a great snack to send in your child's lunch box. This is true regardless of their age, but you may need to mix things up a bit. For younger children, you can actually put the almond butter in the cut celery and top it with a few raisins. For older kids, you can have a small dish with a lid that contains the butter and have cut celery sticks in a container with the raisins on the side.
Why Celery and Almond Butter?
Celery is considered one of those foods that you should eat when you don't have a toothbrush and can't actually brush your teeth. This is because the crunchiness of the vegetable will help to remove plaque from the teeth while also freshening your breath. Almond butter is simply an overall healthier alternative to peanut butter, as it has less sugar.
Younger kids will love it when their open the lid to their container or their lunchbox and see pencils inside – not real pencils, of course, but pencils made out of cheese! It also incorporates bologna, raisins and cone-shaped corn snacks. It's really easy to make by cutting strips of cheese or buying string cheese sticks and adding a cone-shaped corn snack with a raisin on the tip to one end of the cheese (this creates the writing portion of the pencil). On the other end, you'll need to use mustard or some sort of condiment to attach a small, thick piece of bologna on the other end of the cheese stick to make the eraser.
Although this is a really fun and creative idea, older kids may not want a cheese pencil in their lunchbox. However, you can still pack sticks of cheese with a handful of corn snacks, raisins, and bologna chunks.
Cheese is packed with calcium, which is a mineral that is well-known to be needed by the body in order to help promote healthy teeth and bones. Dental Dental says that cheese also works to protect the teeth from harmful acids in the mouth by coating the teeth and helps to rebuild damaged tooth enamel.
In addition to the right foods, you can talk with your child about the benefits of practicing healthy oral habits at school as well as at home. If you need help with this or would like to schedule a dental exam before your child starts school back, contact your pediatric dentist.