• From BBQs and ice cream trucks to movie theater popcorn and candy, there are so many sweet treats available during the summer. While these foods are alright as a special treat, the added sugar can make your child more vulnerable to cavities. Dr. Keta Heitzler has a few suggestions for tasty snacks this summer that won’t risk your child’s healthy smile.   

    Girl is holding slice of red watermelon on beach at sunset. Summer fun holiday and travel concept. Child is happy tourist in sea resort during vacation outdoors. Kid is smiling, enjoying eating fruit.

    Fruits & VeggiesA kitchen full of fruits and veggies can be a parent’s best ally in their child’s health. With the bountiful summer produce available, there are so many tasty and colorful options to keep your kids satisfied in between meals. Check out your local farmers’ market or pick-your-own orchard for the freshest produce. These are packed with essential vitamins to support their oral health:

    • Avocado
    • Cherries
    • Berries
    • Cucumbers
    • Bell Peppers
    • Snaps Peas
    • Watermelon
    • Strawberries
    • Peaches

    Wash your goodies as soon as you get home and prepare into serving-size containers so they are ready to be eaten. If you want them to reach for the healthy options, keep them on a low shelf or drawer in the fridge so they are within arm’s reach of your little ones.

    Instead of Ice Cream

    Hot summer days invite the ice cream truck into your hearing range. While ice cream or popsicles are okay in moderation, be mindful that the added sugar doesn’t need much time to create cavities.  Cubes of cheese are a great way to satisfy the dairy cravings without adding sugar. Frozen berries make a great alternative to popsicles, without the added sugar, if you want to beat the heat. Try freezing yogurt pops for a great ice cream alternative.

    Nuts, Grains, and Seeds

    Seeds and nuts are a fantastic source of omega fatty acids and great finger foods. Shelled pistachios, peanuts, and almonds are in season! Cashews are also great for cavity prevention. Granola makes for a great popcorn alternative. You can make it more fun by letting the kids mix in their favorite nuts or dried fruit.

    We love summer in Appleton, WI, and especially love the sweet treats available this time of year. If your kids are indulging in extra sweets over the summer, remind them to brush and floss more often to protect their precious smiles.

    What are your child’s favorite summer snacks? Send us a photo of their summer smile on our Facebook page