Smile-Friendly Foods Your Kids Will Love!
It may sometimes feel like a chore, just trying to get your kids to eat healthy foods that are good for their bodies and their smiles. Most children won’t pick fresh veggies over fried foods and processed snacks, given the choice. Still, there are smart ways you can help incorporate more nutrient-rich foods into your kids’ diet, without causing grumbles and protests every time they open the pantry. Not only will your kids likely enjoy more energy and better health, their smiles will benefit from these simple snack swaps, too! So if you want to help your children ace their next dental checkup, consider these alternatives to traditional snack foods.
Give Your Kids What They Really Need to Grow Up Healthy
If your kids like salty snacks like crackers, chips and pretzels, try these easy swaps instead:
- Pre-cut veggies like celery, carrots and even mild bell peppers are smile-friendly alternatives with all the crunch of familiar favorites, but with less salt and simple carbs, which break down into sugar.
- If your kids don’t love the taste of these vegetables on their own, try offering them hummus, peanut butter or cheese to up the flavor while still providing nutritious benefits, namely protein from the hummus or peanut butter, and calcium from the cheese.
If your kids have major sweet teeth (and perhaps have struggled with filling-requiring cavities, as a result) it is wise to transition them into a lower-sugar diet.
- Instead of cookies, cupcakes and other sugar-filled treats, opt for fruits that provide a hint of sweet, but with way more nutritional value.
- Berries are easy to eat on the go, as are bananas, apples and oranges, or kid-friendly clementines.
- Again, if you want to sneak in a little extra protein, guised as delicious dip, consider a low-sugar yogurt (you could even add dark chocolate chips, which are lower in sugar than milk chocolate varieties), peanut or another nut butter.
- Low-sugar yogurt is a great stand-alone snack, as well, whether in a cup, squeeze pouch, or as part of a smoothie. Just be sure to read the label and pick one with little to no added sugar. No-sugar added applesauce is another kid-friendly snack. Add a hint of cinnamon for extra flavor and the health benefits of the spice!