With Easter around the corner, kids will look forward to opening their Easter baskets and the treat that await them. Whether you’re 2 or 82, Easter candy can be incredibly tempting. Who does not wish to indulge in a piece of a chocolate bunny or an assortment of Peeps when spring is in the air? However, too much of a good thing can be a very bad thing for our dental and overall health. Americans spend more than $1.5 billion on Easter candy each year, second only to the $1.77 billion spent on Halloween. This means that the average American each will eat about 25 pounds of candy. That is a lot of sugar that can wreak havoc on our smiles and our dental health.
Are Tooth Friendly Easter Baskets Possible?
Sugar and candy in moderation followed by good oral hygiene is perfectly fine. As we know our kids (and some adults) do not always follow moderation especially around holiday time. The following are some alternatives to place in our kids baskets in place of harmful sugary treats:
1. Bunny-shaped graham crackers – These graham crackers are a festive and a high fiber addition to your Easter basket. These come in a variety of flavors like honey, chocolate chip, or cinnamon.
2. Nut mix - Nuts are chock full of both protein and flavor, and a nut mix provides a fun snack. You can buy prepackaged mixed nuts or create your own medleys wrapped in colorful goody bags. Popular kid friendly nut choices include walnuts, pecans, cashews, and pistachios. Simply add the nuts to a small cellophane or paper bag, tie with a ribbon and add to your basket. Be mindful of any allergies children might have.
3. Vegetable crisps - Your healthiest bet would be slicing and packaging fresh vegetables, but if you are running low on time, vegetable crisps are a great compromise. Instead of serving high-fat and nutritionally empty potato chips, choose a low-fat brand of vegetable chips, which provide happy snackers with vitamins A and C. For an even healthier option, look out for baked vegetable chips, which usually cut down on the oil content.
4. Lego’s – Fill your basket with lego’s in place of grass at the bottom. Fill plastic eggs with various lego parts and figures.
5. Egg Shaped Chalk – Great idea for the young artist. Easy to clean off the sidewalk and gets the outdoors in the beautiful spring weather.
6. Craft Basket – Fill basket with parts and pieces to make a springtime craft. Include crayons, markers, paper, beads, etc.
7. DVD’s – Children love DVD’s of their favorite movies. Titles to include could be Toy Story, The Lorax, or even Star Wars.
8. Coupons – These coupons could be for a free day of no chores or even choose where the family goes for dinner. Be creative and fun. This can make the holiday last longer than just the one day of Easter.
Easter Basket Conclusion
Easter is a fun time of the year for parents and kids alike. Between eater egg hunts and family gatherings, there are a lot of opportunities to indulge in sweet treats. We can limit them by offering good safe alternatives that are not damaging to our oral health. Have a safe and happy Easter season!
© 2013, Marielaina Perrone DDS. All rights reserved. Henderson Cosmetic Dentist
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