Eating Healthy to Build Strong Teeth

Many mothers express their concerns regarding their kids' eating habits. Naturally they want their kids to eat lunches that are healthful and good for them. However, making them eat healthfully is hard to do.  A mom of two boys, Geraldine Gennari expressed her sentiments on the matter. “Most days, my sons will eat the apples or other fruit I pack for lunch, but what they really want is what the other kids are eating.”

Experts agree that sensible and healthy eating habits contribute to the well-being of the child. In particular, a child's diet will also significantly affect his dental health. Dr. Courtney Chinn, DDS, MPH, of Columbia University's College of Dental Medicine affirms this. “What parents allow their children to eat and drink seriously affects their overall health, including their teeth and gums.”

Dr. Chinn recommends the following sensible eating habits:

Limit high-sugar foods. Sweet and sugary items like candies and cookies can cause tooth decay. The more sweets like these, the more cavity-causing bacteria will attack your child's teeth. However, you can let him or her indulge from time to time, but set these sweets as part of a meal, perhaps as dessert. Sugary drinks like sodas, sports drink and artificially sweetened fruit juices are highly discouraged. Dr. Chinn recommends milk or water instead.

Stash away these sweets. Serve them infrequently. Instead, offer healthy choices during snacks or meals. For instance, an apple is a good substitute for sugary junk food. Encourage your child to eat healthfully by setting a good example.

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