It might seem impossible to focus on keeping teeth healthy considering the abundance of food during the Thanksgiving weekend. However, dentists in Portland Dr. Todd Beck and Dr. Jacob Morrow at Mt. Tabor Dental encourage all patients not to give up on good dental health over the holidays. Here are some simple tips to help keep your oral health on track!
Must Add Protein
The amount of carbohydrates at and around the Thanksgiving meal can be overwhelming. There will be a wide range of sweet and savory heavy foods to eat, including mashed potatoes, rolls, pies, cookies, cakes, and stuffing, just to name a few.
Foods that are high in sugar and carbohydrates can cause blood sugar to rise and fall at rapid rates and aid in the production of acids in the mouth. Try to limit the consumption of these kinds of foods, instead focusing on making sure you’re getting enough protein throughout the day. Pair a roll with some turkey or sliced apples with cheese in order to keep the bacteria in your mouth – and your blood sugar – under control.
Preparing a Thanksgiving dinner takes several hours, which can lead to many trips back and forth to the kitchen or dining room as the day passes. It’s a tradition for many families to have space dedicated to appetizers or snacks that everyone can access throughout the day to keep hunger at bay.
Instead of grazing on carb-heavy foods like crackers or sweets, try to focus on fruits and veggies throughout the day. Vegetables are high in nutrients and fiber, and the crunchiness actually helps to naturally clean teeth while you snack. Don’t forget to add savory dips, like different varieties of hummus or a low-fat ranch dressing to encourage people to eat their veggies. Also, consider making a creative turkey or Thanksgiving-themed veggie tray for a little extra fun!
Move Your Body
Moving your body might not sound like a great way to preserve good dental health habits. However, focusing on getting some exercise during Thanksgiving day before the big dinner can keep your focus off food. Exercise naturally increases the hormones in our brains that help us to feel good and energetic, which means we’re less likely to rely on foods that are high in sugar for a false sense of energy. Try engaging your friends and family in a traditional game of touch football while dinner is being prepared, or do some outdoor games with the kids!
Thanksgiving break is a great time to take stock and organize before the holiday craziness hits. Call Portland dentists Dr. Todd Beck and Dr. Jacob Morrow and their team at Mt. Tabor Dental at (503) 236-1449 to schedule your appointment!
Photo Credit: Happy Raw Kitchen