Summer Cookout? These Foods will Make You Smile!
When you hear “healthy cooking”, what do you think about? Diets and flavorless food are the words that immediately enter to my mind. Like many Americans, I have an unhealthy mindset about healthy foods. Healthy eating should be a goal of everyone regardless of weight or physical condition considering these foods are what offer all the nutrients our body needs to continue functioning properly. In the same way you can change your diet to keep your heart healthy, you can also change your diet to help maintain your oral health. Calcium-rich foods are a great way to maintain strong and healthy teeth. Dairy products, such as cheese, yogurt and milk, are perfect sources of calcium. Foods high in fiber also contribute to a healthy mouth by keeping your saliva flowing. Saliva is the natural lubricant of the mouth, so a decrease can lead to dry mouth which is both uncomfortable and damaging. Whole grain foods are also important because they are rich in B vitamins and iron. Whole grains help keep bones, teeth and gums healthy. Plus foods that are whole grain are often high in fiber. It is important to remember that we use food to replenish the nutrients we use every day. If you replenish them with healthy foods, your body and mouth will be grateful. Recipes that call for fruits, vegetables and dairy products make it easy to incorporate these oral health helpers into your everyday diet. Check out the recipe below for Yogurt Fruit Salad. This will be perfect for a warm summer afternoon cookout. • 1 (16 ounce) package fresh strawberries, hulled and halved • 1 large peach, pitted and cut into bite-size pieces • 2 plums, pitted and cut into bite-size pieces • 2 kiwi fruit, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces • 1 cup dark sweet cherries, pitted and halved • 1 cup honeydew melon balls or cubes • 1 cup cantaloupe balls or cubes • 1 cup cubed fresh pineapple • 1 cup grapes • 2 (16 ounce) containers low-fat vanilla yogurt In a large salad bowl, lightly mix together the strawberries, peach, plums, kiwi fruit, cherries, honeydew melon, cantaloupe, pineapple, and grapes until the fruit is well mixed. Serve in bowls with yogurt spooned over the top.