It’s that time of year again! Cooler evenings, falling leaves, pumpkin spice everything and back to school! While parents (and kids!) are secretly enjoying getting back into the regular routine, there is always one worry – what do we pack for lunch? There are certainly a few food and drink choices that are better than others when it comes to packing a tooth-friendly meal to go!
- Fruits are easy to pack (many come in their own package!) and full of vitamins and fibre. Bonus – if it is a crunchy fruit such as an apple, it will actually help in cleansing the teeth! The only caution would be in having a great quantity of very acidic fruit or fruits like blueberries that cause a dark stain. Stain, however, can be easily removed, and the vitamins more than make up for it! Please remember to choose real fruit instead of fruit leathers or fruit gummies, as these treats stick in the pits of the teeth and cause cavities.
- Most veggies are readily portable with very little preparation and full of vitamins! Most vegetables are crunchy as well and will help to cleanse the teeth. Any veggies are an excellent choice for a snack! Try some carrots or celery sticks with hummus to dip in!
- Try to stick with just water to drink. Kids love the reusable water bottles, you can add ice to keep it palatable, and there is no waste! With water, kids aren’t drinking their calories and aren’t adding unnecessary sugars to their diet. Water also rinses the mouth and teeth and stimulates salivary production, which reduces your child’s cavity risk.
- Small amounts of cheese are a wonderful addition to a healthy lunch. Cheese has a very interesting benefit… it neutralizes the pH in the mouth making it a not-very-attractive environment for the bacteria that causes cavities. Pre-packaged cheese strings are quick and easy and the perfect size!
Kids love helping with preparation of school lunches! Get them involved in prep and in planning what they would like, and they should gobble up every bite at school! Good luck to everyone in the new school year!!