In our last post, we looked at several options for healthy, braces-friendly snacks. Here’s the second batch of tasty options:

Salsa

Salsa, oh salsa. We can go on and on about the health benefits of salsa—no fat, tons of vegetable goodness, and just plain delicious no matter how spicy you like yours.

Most people prefer salsa with tortilla chips (though it’s also popular with scrambled eggs and on chicken). Of course, when you have braces you need to be careful not to eat corn chips that are too hard, and be sure to brush well afterward to be sure little bits don’t get stuck in between brackets and wires.

For this reason, you might skip the salty chips and try something a little easier on the mouth, such as thinner multigrain chips or even rice crackers. We’ve also heard of several people eating salsa with cucumber slices.

By the way, salsa’s cousin guacamole also makes for a great snack!

Mix-your-own yogurt

Yogurt has a lot of good going for it—it’s a good source of protein and calcium, plus can be good for your digestive system.

So that means all yogurt is automatically healthy, right? Unfortunately, no. Many of the flavored varieties you can buy at the store contain so much sugar and artificial ingredients they’re practically dessert!

Instead of buying the sugary stuff, go for plain yogurt and add your own mix-ins, such as fresh fruit, honey, and granola. Even with the sweet stuff you add, you’ll still cut out a ton of the sugar—an enemy of a healthy smile—and get your calcium that will keep your pearly whites strong!

Baked apples

Apples are full of nutrients, keep for a long time, and taste great. Of course, with braces you’ll need to cut apples up into slices—or, if you want them super soft, you can bake them.

There are many recipes for baked apples (such as this one), but most of them involve cutting out the top of the core and the seeds, filling the hole with oatmeal, sweetener and a bit of butter, and baking for 15 or so minutes. (To keep it healthier, don’t go crazy with the butter and sugar). The apples get nice and soft and taste delicious!

Fruit popsicles

Now we’re not talking about the sugar-and-food-coloring kind of popsicles. (What food in nature actually comes in neon blue, anyway?) Making your own healthy fruit popsicles can be super easy.

Basically, you make a smoothie—using ingredients like fruit and juice, maybe some yogurt if you want it creamy. Blend it up and pour it into a popsicle mold. (Actually, you don’t even need a fancy mold—a disposable plastic cup and a craft stick will do just fine.) A few hours later you have a delicious dessert that’s good for you, too. Here’s just one of the many popsicle recipes you can find online.

Of course, don’t leave the popsicles in the freezer so long that they become rock-hard. Be sure to let them thaw a little if they’re too tough to safely eat with braces.

We hope these ideas have inspired you to branch out and try new snacks, while keeping your braces in good working order. And swapping out junk food for healthy snacks will help you feel better throughout the day—and that’s something to smile about!

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