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Believe it or not, holiday fare doesn’t have to take its toll on your smile or your waistline. We have some ideas to help make your holiday treats more tooth-friendly as you enjoy the festivities.

Whether you are gift-giving, socializing with friends, family, and co-workers or hosting people in your home, sugar doesn’t have to be on the top of the menu. Opting for specialty cheeses can help protect tooth enamel from erosion while providing satisfying treats for everyone. Erosion is especially common after eating sugary snacks and drinking sugar-filled coffee or soda, and cheese offers calcium and the protein called casein, which helps tooth enamel.

In addition to specialty cheeses, you can opt for raw vegetables and fruits, or crudités. These are wonderful to snack on while waiting for the main entree. The chewing action necessary for raw vegetables stimulates saliva production, which neutralizes acids and washes away oral bacteria. Carrots, celery, and apples are great choices.

Nuts such as almonds, Brazil nuts, and cashews are another great source of calcium and phosphorous which are good for your teeth. They help to remineralize tooth enamel (along with fluoride) while also creating extra saliva flow.

Tip: If you are making desserts, try halving the amount of sugar called for. It will still taste delicious, especially if you add to the sweetness by using cinnamon, vanilla or nutmeg in the dish. You get all the flavor without all the sugar!

We hope these tooth-friendly foods help you enjoy the holiday season. If you have any questions for Little Smiles Pediatric Dentistry in Ashburn, Virginia, please give us a call at 703-542-7000 today. Our dentist, Dr. Jonathon Konz, along with the rest of our team look forward to helping you!