Ways to eat healthy with bracer friendly foods
For many, over the time period of having bracers food can be a constant battle, certain foods may break or damage your braces.
By Bio Island Nutrition Team
In Australia it is estimated that approximately 400,000 people have bracers or aligners for dental issues, with a high percentage being children to help with correcting teeth alignment issues. For many, over the time period of having bracers food can be a constant battle, certain foods may break or damage your braces, biting into something may pull away the brackets and wires or food can get stuck in them with no easy way to remove it.
To help you enjoy food that is nutritious but also tasty, here is a list of healthy bracer friendly food options. Many of which can be added to lunchboxes or adapted for busy weekday cooking.
- ‘Soft’ fruits such as berries, melon, sliced banana and kiwi fruit.
- Smoothies for ‘hard’ fruits you may not be able to bite into with braces, such as apples.
- Fruit cups, canned fruit or fruit purees are a great option for softer fruits to enjoy, look for varieties which are stored in coconut water or their own juices rather than syrups to cut down on sugar intakes.
- Soups provide a great way to incorporate hard to eat carrots, cauliflower and broccoli.
- Veggie burgers provide a delicious way to keep your veggie intake up and also has a bracer friendly texture, as sometimes meat can be stringy and get stuck in braces.
- Mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes and cauliflower are all great as a side dish which can be adapted in many ways through adding different spices and herbs. Veggie packed cottage pies with mashed cauliflower cheese topping is always a winner!
Meat & Protein
- Eggs anyway you like them are perfect throughout the day and can be easily adapted from scrambled eggs at breakfast to hardboiled for snacking.
- Milk has many nutritional benefits, along with supporting healthy teeth. Having the occasional flavoured Milk, such as strawberry or chocolate also offers some flavourful ways to have drinks that won’t stain or harm your braces.
- Bite size or soft meat choices are less likely to get stuck in bracers, and can be adapted for many meals, try cutting up roast chicken and vegetables, having a tuna salad, beef mince chili or adding tofu to a stir fry.
- Pumpkin Ravioli brings together added vegetable intake and soft pasta to make the perfect bracer friendly food.
- Warm tortilla wraps allow for endless options when cooking such as quesadilla’s, salad wrap or pizza bases.
- Porridge is extremely nutritious breakfast, with the added bonus that unlike many nuts, seeds and smaller grains it is easily eaten when you have bracers.
Snacks & Treats
- Sugary lollies and candy as not recommended during the time you wear braces, though occasional sweet treat such as ice cream allows you something sweet in just about any flavour, though best to avoid ice creams with added nuts, sticky caramel or smaller objects that may get stuck in your braces
- Homemade muffins are great for lunchboxes and can be made slightly healthier when switches are made to wholemeal flour, swapping out sugars for lighter options and adding sweetness through spices such as cinnamon.
- Waffles, crepes or pancakes are the go-to treat for breakfast and to balance out your mornings try adding no added sugar yoghurt drinks or kefir for a gut and bracer friendly drink.
What foods to avoid with Braces?
Your dentist will usually discuss with you further about what to expect when getting braces, including recovery from the procedure and foods to watch out for. If you child is getting bracers it is important to help them understand which foods they should avoid or be very careful in eating, especially when they are at school, parties or other activities where food is offered.
Caution should be given to the below foods when you have bracers:
- Hard raw vegetables, such as carrots
- Hard fruit, such as biting into whole apples
- Thick, chewy pizza crusts
- Hard taco shells
- Chips, pretzels, corn chips and popcorn
- Hard crusted bread or nuts and seeds in bread
- Hard and sticky lollies and candy such as caramels, gummy bears, taffy
- Nuts, including sticky or crunch peanut butter
- Meat from the bone or large portions of stringy meat
- Ice cubes
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