I have braces, and I am trying to get to a healthy weight. I read about eating 5 servings of fruits and veggies a day. But I can't eat apples and things like that. What do I eat to still eat healthy?
Having braces is a great time to make healthy changes in your diet. That's because people who wear braces need to avoid certain foods — and many of these are less-than-healthy foods like candy, gummies, corn chips, and other hard snack foods. (Your dentist has probably already told you to pass on these!)
Of course, as you point out, some fruits and veggies fall into the "hard foods" category. But that doesn't mean you can't eat them — it just requires a little preparation. Try cutting apples (and other hard fruits like pears) into small pieces or thin wedges. Or go for unsweetened applesauce or canned fruits in their own juice. The same goes for veggies — you can cut foods like raw carrots into small slivers. Cooking crunchy vegetables also can make them easier to eat.
If any food seems too difficult to eat, cut it into small pieces and chew slowly. Because it takes time for our bodies to notice and send signals when we are full, chewing your food slowly gives you another health benefit: If you eat slowly, you are less likely to overeat.
Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: January 2011
*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.
|American Dental Association (ADA) The ADA provides information for dental patients and consumers.|
|ChooseMyPlate.gov ChooseMyPlate.gov provides practical information on how to follow the U.S. government's Dietary Guidelines for Americans. It includes resources and tools to help families lead healthier lives.|
|Your Secrets to Healthy Snacking More than 1,000 teens took our survey on healthy snacking. Here are their thoughts (and advice) on choosing healthy snacks.|
|Braces: Rachel's Story When Rachel got her braces off during her junior year in high school, she finally had the smile she'd always wanted. So what went wrong? Read her story to find out.|
|All About Orthodontia Just getting braces and have no idea what to expect? Had braces for a while but wonder what's going on in there? Whatever your situation is, you're not alone: millions of teens have braces.|
|Taking Care of Your Teeth There's a lot more to taking care of your teeth than breath mints and mouth sprays. Read this article to learn the facts on flossing, how to give plaque the brush-off, and much more.|
|5 Ways to Get Your 5 a Day You may know that you should eat 5 servings of fruit and vegetables a day. Here are some tips on making that happen.|
What to expect when coming to Akron Children's
For healthcare providers and nurses
Residency & Fellowships, Medical Students, Nursing and Allied Health
For prospective employees and career-seekers
Our online community that provides inspirational stories and helpful information.