March 3 through 7 is National School Breakfast week, a campaign designed to raise awareness of the importance of eating a healthy breakfast every day. The theme for 2014 is “Take Time for School Breakfast.” Experts say that children who eat a nutritious morning meal get better test scores, have fewer behavioral issues, and are generally healthier. By taking just a few minutes out of the school day to serve breakfast, schools may be giving their students a huge educational boost. However, as your Ankeny, IA dentist can tell you, what your kids eat for breakfast is vitally important. Sugary cereal or toaster pastries are not going to help your kids do better in school or benefit their physical and oral health. Whether your kids eat breakfast before they get on the bus or they eat when they arrive at school, make sure that they are filling up with a nutritious meal.
The Best Breakfasts for Physical and Oral Health
Doctors and dentists agree that the healthiest breakfasts are high in protein, whole grains, and dairy. They should also be low in fat and processed sugars. Protein and fiber will leave your kids feeling satisfied for much longer, giving them more sustained energy and helping them to concentrate better in class. These nutrients are also very beneficial to your children’s teeth. Protein and Vitamin D help to strengthen dental enamel, which protects teeth from stains and harmful bacteria. Calcium also strengthens enamel by re-mineralizing teeth. Additionally, calcium can increase the production of saliva, which helps to wash away harmful bacteria and plaque. Vitamin K can help to strengthen the immune system and prevent gum disease. When paired with Vitamin D, it also contributes to stronger teeth and dental enamel. In addition to being high in vitamins, raw fruits and vegetables have an exfoliating effect on your teeth, and can help to remove plaque, tartar, and bacteria.
For optimal dental and physical health, your child’s breakfast should incorporate all of the food groups, focusing on the essential vitamins and minerals listed above. For example, the following menu offers protein, calcium, fiber, and vitamins:
2 scrambled eggs
1 piece of whole grain toast
1 cup of low fat milk
1 cup of strawberries
Eggs are high in protein, Vitamin D, and Vitamin K, making them immensely beneficial to your child’s dental health. Whole grain toast has necessary fiber, and the carbs will give your child an immediate boost of energy. Milk is rich in calcium and protein. Vitamin C-rich strawberries also contain a high concentration of malic acid, which has a natural whitening effect on teeth. Of course, this menu is just one example of a healthy breakfast, and your nutritious menu options are endless. If your children typically eat breakfast at home, make sure they are getting a great, healthy meal. If they normally eat at school, talk to your local school board or nutrition specialist to ensure that your kids getting all the nutrients they need to protect their health, enhance their smiles, and excel in the classroom.
About Dental Impressions: To learn more about nutrition and how it can affect your dental health, contact Dr. Amanda Foust today. You can reach Dental Impressions by calling 515-965-0230. Dr. Foust has proudly treated patients in Ankeny, Alleman, Elkhart, Bondurant, and the surrounding areas since 2006.