We all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But how important is it to our oral health?
The breakfast effect
Think about your typical first meal of the day. Is it hot or cold? Does it have a lot of sugar in it? Is it balanced? In the United States, cereals and pastries are the most popular choices for breakfast but are not the healthiest for our teeth.
These unhealthy choices are often loaded with sugar and can have damaging effects on your teeth, gums and fixed appliances as well. Failure to brush and floss after eating breakfast could lead to even greater problems in the near future.
Breakfast to protect your smile
Your mouth is no different from your body when it comes to making sure it gets the nutrients it needs. Eating a balanced breakfast can help prevent problems like bad breath, tooth decay, early tooth loss and gum disease.
So what does a balanced breakfast look like? A properly balanced breakfast should include fruit, vegetables, fiber and healthy proteins. Real-life examples of this could look like this:
- Granola cereal, yogurt, and a sliced apple
- Scrambled eggs, toast and orange juice
- Veggie omelet, bran muffin, and fruit with yogurt
- Whole-grain pancakes or waffles topped with berries and/or yogurt and milk
- Low-fat cheese melted on toast with a piece of fruit
How to eat for your smile
- Switch refined grains for whole grains. Choose oatmeal or whole wheat bread instead of cereal.
- Go smaller. Cut up ripe fruits and veggies into bite-sized portions so they are easier to digest.
- Drink up. Drink water or unsweetened tea to help prevent tooth decay and strengthen your tooth’s enamel.
- Be mindful of fruit juices and smoothies. While they may be quick and easy to make, fruit juices and smoothies are high in both sugar and acid.
- Try breakfast for dinner. It doesn’t hurt to have a balanced meal for dinner. Switch things up and end your day the same way you would normally start it.
- Choose smarter when it comes to cereal. If you can’t see yourself taking cereal out of your morning routine, we understand. Instead, choose a healthier cereal packed with lots of fiber and less sugar and preservatives.
- If it’s sticky, be picky. Stay away from sticky or hard foods that could damage your braces.
Now that you know why breakfast is truly the most important meal of the day, you can now start making healthier choices to maintain your healthy smile. Treat your mouth with the same care as you do the rest of your body and notice that not only will you have a great smile, but the healthy body as well.