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Braces-friendly Meals at Sammamish Metropolitan Market

Braces-friendly Meals at Sammamish Metropolitan Market

After a long day of work or school, nobody likes coming home to an empty fridge. Make sure yours is well stocked with ingredients and supplies for your favorite meals, so you don’t end up hangry (hungry + angry). Besides, getting a balanced and nutritious meal is just as important for your teeth as it is for the rest of your body! Your body needs certain vitamins and minerals to strengthen your enamel for strong, healthy teeth.

At Porth Personalized Orthodontics , we understand how hard it can be to shop for foods that are compatible with your orthodontic appliance. A local store many of our patients frequent is Metropolitan Market in Sammamish.

As a grocery store based in the Pacific Northwest, Metropolitan Market is dedicated to providing fresh, organic products that are locally sourced. If you’re planning to stop by there, here are our suggestions for braces-friendly meals at Metropolitan Market

Groceries

Stocking up for the week? You might not be able to consume anything sticky, hard, or crunchy, but that still leaves plenty of delicious options for your plate? Whether you are wearing braces outside or inside of your teeth or clear aligners, your teeth are sore while we are moving them. Chewing on hard foods is not going to be comfortable.

There are a few essentials that every braces patient needs to know about when it comes to grocery shopping. We’ve broken it down by food groups below!

Produce

Fresh fruit and vegetables can be extremely crunchy and hard to chew. Raw produce can easily get stuck in between teeth, especially with braces. Here’s what we recommend instead:

Riced vegetables: Metropolitan Market offers vegetables, such as cauliflower, broccoli, peas, and carrots, that are cut rice sized pieces. No more gnawing on crunchy kale or carrots for hours – all you have to do is steam and eat!

Potatoes: Once potatoes are cooked, they’re super fluffy and soft, perfect for braces. You can get them whole and prepare them yourself, but Metropolitan Market also offers premade sweet potato fries, mashed potatoes, and wedges.

Spinach: Sauteed spinach is a quick, easy way to get essential vitamins and minerals. Its fiber can also help remove plaque from the teeth.

Applesauce: If fresh apples are too crunchy, applesauce is a sweet and fruity alternative you can indulge in. Just make sure to check the sugar content on the back! Some companies add extra sugar, making the applesauce less healthy and bad for teeth.

Soft fruit: Bananas, mangos, and berries are all examples of soft fruit that can be eaten while you’re wearing braces. Metropolitan Market is partnered with Sammamish Farmer’s Market to ensure there are plenty of local and organic options available.

Dairy & Eggs

Your teeth and bones need calcium to stay healthy and strong, so it’s no surprise that dentists are quick to remind patients to get their daily intake of dairy. Of course, you can also get calcium from vegetables and there are tons of calcium enriched plant-based products.

Yogurt: Always check the nutrition facts when buying yogurt. While most of the brands that Metropolitan Market stocks are healthy, there are a few that sneak way too much sugar to be healthy. Yogurt is creamy, delicious snack that’s chock full of calcium and probiotics, but if it’s loaded with sugar, you might be doing more damage good. Try a sugar free option and load up with sweet berries or honey for flavor!

Cheese: Not only is cheese a grate (see what we did there?) source of calcium, its texture can actually help scrub plaque off teeth sometimes! Cheese also stimulates saliva production and helps lower the mouth’s acidity, making it a hostile environment for bad bacteria and plaque. However, you’ll want to be picky with your cheese, just like you were with your yogurt. Many brands of cheese are actually categorized as cheese products that actually don’t have much if any cheese. Pre-packaged cheese dips, American cheese, imitation cheese, and cheese sprays are often made of milk by-product, emulsifiers, saturated vegetable oils, salt, and whey. These processed foods don’t offer the same health benefits as actual cheese, so check the ingredients on a product before purchasing. Some of our favorite cheeses are cheddar, monterey jack, brie, gorgonzola, and roquefort.

Milk: Metropolitan Market has tons of milk options, from regular 2% to lactose free to plant-based. Almost all milks are fortified with additional calcium and minerals, so you can’t go wrong!

Applesauce: If fresh apples are too crunchy, applesauce is a sweet and fruity alternative you can indulge in. Just make sure to check the sugar content on the back! Some companies add extra sugar, making the applesauce less healthy and bad for teeth.

Eggs: We have no idea why eggs are slotted in the same aisle as dairy, but we do know that they provide the perfect consistency for anyone with braces. Whether they’re fried, scrambled, boiled, or poached, eggs are a superfood that are packed with vitamins, minerals, and protein.

Pantry & Dried Goods

Most grains like bread, rice, and pasta/noodles should be soft enough for braces as long as they are well cooked. As long as you don’t over toast your bread or over fry your rice, your braces should be able to withstand chewing these products. If you’ve recently had your wires adjusted and your mouth is feeling a little sensitive, here are foods you can modify:

Rice: Rice goes well with almost anything and it’s super easy to eat even with braces. If you don’t feel like chewing at all, you can easily make a rice porridge by boiling it with chicken stock and some vegetables.

Orzo:This rice-shaped pasta is small enough that you don’t need to do much chewing, especially if you cook it tender. It can be served with any pasta sauce or even in soup.

Rice: Rice goes well with almost anything and it’s super easy to eat even with braces. If you don’t feel like chewing at all, you can easily make a rice porridge by boiling it with chicken stock and some vegetables.

Oatmeal: One of the healthiest grains you can feed your body are oats! They’re full of minerals and fiber. Best of all, you can adjust the texture of your oatmeal depending on how sensitive your braces are by simply adding more water or milk.

Hawaiian bread: This sweet, fluffy bread is moist but light. You can eat it at as a snack, add spread, or even use it as slider buns! The texture is even softer than regular white bread but won’t get stuck in your brackets, so you can enjoy as many as you want!

Beans: Like oatmeal, beans and lentils can be cooked to optimal squishiness depending on your preference. They also have tons of benefits, including high protein, antioxidants, and folate.

Meat & Seafood

Fish: Tuna, salmon, yellowtail, and just about any other fish are all excellent sources of B12, protein, and omega fatty acids. Best of all, they are tender, juicy, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious if they’re cooked right. Just make sure to pick out any bones before you eat as they can easily get stuck in your braces and damage your brackets.

Shellfish: Most shellfish is perfectly fine to eat as long as you completely remove the shell. You can get fresh shrimp, crab, lobster, crawfish and more at the Metropolitan Market, straight from the Seattle fishing charters. We like getting clams for our homemade clam chowder!

Poultry: Chicken is an affordable, healthy white meat that can be added to almost any meal. Overcooked chicken, however, can be tough on the braces and undercooked chicken can be dangerous to consume, so be careful when you’re preparing your meat. Likewise, turkey is very healthy, but keep in mind it does become dry much faster than chicken.

Red Meat: Beef and pork are both healthy in moderation. Choose lean meats if you can to reduce your cholesterol intake. Stay away from bacon or overdone meats as they can be extremely tough on the teeth. Instead, head over to the deli for thinly sliced meats that are easy to chew.

Market Cafe & Bakery

Gelato:Metropolitan Market sells an authentic Italian custard based ice cream made right here in Seattle. It’s a nice treat on days you’re in for an adjustment, as that’s when the teeth are most tender.

Poke: Most shellfish is perfectly fine to eat as long as you completely remove the shell. You can get fresh shrimp, crab, lobster, crawfish and more at the Metropolitan Market, straight from the Seattle fishing charters. We like getting clams for our homemade clam chowder!

Soup: Soup is the holy grail of the braces-friendly foods and Metropolitan Market has an entire soup bar! There are many options to choose from, such as ramen, minestrone, chicken noodle, etc, and they’re made fresh daily.

Eating with Braces or Clear Aligners

No matter what you choose to eat, remember to brush or rinse your mouth after. It’s really easy for foods to get stuck in between brackets and teeth, causing harmful cavities. Even innocuous dishes like soup can leave sugar particles on the surface of your teeth. If you’re not too sure whether a food will be damaging to your braces or not, it’s best to steer clear until you can check on the comprehensive list of foods your orthodontist gives you.

On the bright side, you will have fewer dietary restrictions if you have clear aligners since they can be easily removed before eating. However, there are certain foods that are better for your overall and dental health than others. If you have clear aligners, we recommend refraining from consuming too many sugary items like soft drinks, candy, cookies, and pastries.

Bacteria in your mouth feed off sugar and turn it into harmful acids that attack the teeth. Water and saliva can naturally wash away some food debris but not all of it. That’s why orthodontists advise patients to brush teeth and floss right after eating. When the clear aligners, like invisalign, are placed back on the teeth without brushing, plaque gets trapped against the teeth, causing dental decay. Over time, practicing poor oral hygiene habits like this can lead to severe consequences, like cavities and even gum disease.

No matter what you choose to eat, remember to brush or rinse your mouth after. It’s really easy for foods to get stuck in between brackets and teeth, causing harmful cavities. Even innocuous dishes like soup can leave sugar particles on the surface of your teeth. If you’re not too sure whether a food will be damaging to your braces or not, it’s best to steer clear until you can check on the comprehensive list of foods your doctor gives you.

At Porth Personalized Orthodontics, we believe in a global approach to dental and orthodontic care. Your diet and nutrition affect every aspect of your life, including your teeth and gums! We hope our braces patients are able to find some new braces-friendly favorites at Metropolitan Market with this guide. If you have any suggestions, stop by our office (also located in Sammamish) and let us know what they are!

We love sharing tips and tricks amongst our patients to make their orthodontic experience as pleasant and productive as possible!