Which Thanksgiving Foods are Best for Good Oral Health?

Thanksgiving first began as a celebration of a good harvest and way to thank friends and family for their love and support.  Giving thanks for a good year and spending time with loved ones is a continued tradition that we all enjoy.  So, what is your favorite Thanksgiving dish?  Our Laguna Hills dentist staff is sharing some of their favorite foods along with the benefits the lend towards healthy teeth.

Green bean casserole

Green beans are a must in your diet.  The high fiber content and vitamins C and K promote bone growth and help strengthen teeth.  Beans are also a great source of manganese.  Manganese aids the body in tissue growth and bone growth.  If green bean casserole is a must on your Thanksgiving table, use a fat free cream of mushroom soup for a healthier version.  For additional health benefits use fresh green beans.  Canned beans should be rinsed to reduce sodium intake.

Cranberry relish

Cranberries are rich in Vitamin C, antioxidants, and fiber.  They strengthen your immune system and help with digestion; a must at Thanksgiving.  The tartness is typically countered by sugar.  However, you can choose a healthy option by substituting other fruits in place of raw sugar.  Crushed pineapple, oranges, and apples will balance the sour and impress your guests.


Thanksgiving is complete with a delicious turkey, says Laguna Hills dentist staff at Alicia Dental.  It’s the star of your table.  The meat is a great source of protein.  Protein helps bone growth and keeps your teeth strong and healthy.  As the highlight of your meal, this protein helps burn fat and keeps you feeling full.  The full feeling will keep you from consuming less healthy sides.

Sweet potatoes

Candied yams topped with marshmallows please even the pickiest of eaters.  Yams are great for tissue growth as they contain high amounts of vitamins A and C.  Additionally, sweet potatoes help with digestion as the vitamin A causes your body to produce extra saliva which, in turn, breaks down food particles.  Marshmallows, on the other hand, aren’t healthy.  However, our Laguna Hills dentists know this dish is hard to resist.  Drink lots of water and remember to brush those teeth!

Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin, by all rights, is a fantastic vegetable high in vitamins A and B, and full of antioxidants and fiber.  The fiber will help with digestion and antioxidants aid your immune system.  The actual pie, however, is not so healthy.  Still, pumpkin pie is a dish typically indulged in once a year.  Just remember to eat in moderation and brush your teeth after your meal.

Overindulgence at Thanksgiving is the biggest problem.  Try a little of everything, but in smart portions.  Your waistline will thank you as will your teeth if you stay away from overly sweet and sticky foods.  Above all else, remember good oral hygiene includes good nutrition and regular brushing and flossing.  A visit your Laguna Hills dentist, Alicia Dental, for a routine dental exam is another priority for good oral health.

We wish all of our patients and our neighbors a happy and healthy Thanksgiving.  We look forward to hearing about your favorite dishes.  Enjoy your holiday and the smiles you’re sure to share.  Keep in touch by visiting our Facebook page and we’ll see you at your next appointment.