Tomorrow (Nov. 24, 2016) is Thanksgiving Day and I’m going let the American Dental Association help me out with a review of Thanksgiving favorites. You’ll find a dentist’s view of the main players below and you can find out even more from the ADA’s website at http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/thanksgiving-slideshow
So, here we go with the ADA’s specific comments:
- The Good: This main course is packed with protein.
- The Bad: “Turkey can be difficult to eat because it sometimes gets stuck between your teeth,” says ADA spokesperson Dr. Kim Harms. “That’s where flossing can help.”
- The MouthHealthy: It’s the star of the Thanksgiving table. Gobble it up!
- The Good: It’s a tasty Thanksgiving tradition.
- The Bad: Cranberries are naturally tart, so sugar or sugar substitutes are often added to products, including sauce. This side dish can be sticky, acidic and may temporarily stain your teeth.
- The MouthHealthy: “If eaten alone the sugar content, stickiness, tendency for the little berries to get stuck between your teeth and acidity make it one of those foods that needs to be eaten with a meal,” Dr. Harms says.
MASHED POTATOES AND GRAVY
- The Good: “Potatoes are an important dietary source of vitamin C, B6 and potassium,” Dr. Harms says.
- The Bad: Potatoes are starchy, and cavity-causing bacteria loves the sugar that makes up starch.
- The MouthHealthy: “If covered with gravy, the health benefits of the overall dish are diminished to some extent, but this is a holiday and only comes once a year,” she says.
- The Good: Pumpkin has Vitamin A, which helps keep your gums healthy and builds the hard outer shell of your teeth (enamel).
- The Bad: There’s the added sugar in the pie itself and whatever whipped topping you put on top.
- The MouthHealthy: This is usually a once-a-year treat, but dish it out after dinner. Eating sweets shortly after meals helps keep saliva flowing to wash away leftover food.