Hidden Crunch and How to Avoid It

Thanksgiving is not just about turkey. It’s also about football. It’s a time of year to gather round and root for our favorite college and professional teams. That typically means gracious hosts and hostesses will lay out an assortment of munchies—tasty, easy to serve snacks that we can mindlessly shovel in our mouths while we cheer in front of the TV screen.  So join in the festivities and have fun!  Just follow our common sense guide to surviving the sports gatherings.

What to Avoid

popcornHas your host put out bowls of popcorn, potato chips, pretzels, nuts and crackers?  Most people regard those as staple foods during football season. But these are typically problematic for sufferers of TMD and CMD.  Stay away from those snacks this holiday season.

The big surprise

No one wants to watch a game and eat healthy food, right?  You probably believe holiday gatherings are a time to cut loose and go off the rails for a day or two.  You might be surprised to learn that nothing could be further from the truth.  Most people prefer healthier food choices. They only eat “bad” foods when no other options are provided. And then they go home at night and lament on the unhealthy snacks they ate.  When given better choices most people are actually much happier to munch on guilt-free foods.

Try this instead

cheeseEveryone loves cheese. For TMD and CMD sufferers, cheese is okay, but only in limited amounts! Cheese is often high in sodium, so don’t go hog wild, but sample cheese judiciously.  You don’t have to limit your selection to slices of cheddar or American either. Go to the deli section of your grocery store and ask about gourmet options available.

Did you know?

Many tasty low sodium cheeses are available. One option is brick cheese. It is similar in texture to Gouda cheese, but has much less sodium.  Goat cheese is another safe bet. Its soft, creamy and spreadable but can also be served sliced or crumbled.  Mozzarella made from whole milk is another low sodium cheese. It’s not just for pizzas—mozzarella can be used in salads or served with tomatoes and vinaigrette dressing. And don’t forget about cream cheese!  It’s also a low sodium option that can liven up sandwiches and spreads.  Swiss cheese is another low sodium fail safe option. It’s a milder tasting cheese that most guests will recognize from its holey appearance.

The perfect accompaniment

fruitNothing goes better with cheese than fruit. And many fruits are great finger foods. They require no extra utensils to serve. Guests can just dig right in. Set out some thin crisp apple slices or bunches of plump red grapes. Juicy strawberries and colorful cubes of cantaloupe are  not only pleasing to the eye, they’re also mouthwatering foods your guests will truly appreciate.

Get creative this holiday season. Avoid the crunchy salty stuff and serve foods that will help manage your pain and leave your guests feeling both satisfied and grateful.

Image Source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Misc_fruit.jpg, http://www.flickr.com/photos/anneh632/5766697640/, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Flickr_-_cyclonebill_-_Popcorn_%281%29.jpg

Original Source: https://www.medcentertmj.com/dental-health/hidden-crunch-avoid


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