Schoolyard diets: what should my children eat? - National Dental Care

School holidays are ending and your kids are heading back to school – it’s time to think about your kids’ lunch-boxes again.

Here are some hints on what is best for kids and their teeth

Be wary of these items:

  • Check sugar content – muesli bars, snacks and drinks often contain added sugar. This can lead to weight gain, Type 2 diabetes, and is bad for gums and teeth
  • Dried fruit – sounds healthy, but the condensed sugar leaves a sticky coating on the teeth, leading to tooth decay
  • Fruit juices contain a lot of fruit sugar – and possibly added sugar – that will spike your kids’ insulin levels and can lead to weight gain and Type 2 diabetes

Here’s what to pack:

  • Water instead of drinks or fruit juice – in a bottle they can refill themselves at the bubbler. Better for their teeth and saves you money
  • Small pieces of fruit, crunchy vegetables like carrot sticks and celery and nuts and seeds for energy from natural sugars, fibre, essential vitamins and minerals and extra protein
  • Wholemeal and grainy bread to keep blood sugar levels low and keep them satisfied longer
  • Natural yoghurt (no added sugar or syrupy fruit pieces) as a substitute for other sugary desserts and snacks. It’s rich in calcium to help teeth stay strong – add fresh fruit pieces for a little sweetness
  • Make sweets special-occasion treats only, not expected every day

And book them into a National Dental Care dentist appointment every six months to make sure any of problems are dealt with.

For more hints and clues on healthy lunches and kid-friendly recipes, check out these websites:

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