According to the State Indicator Report on Fruits and Vegetables, 2013, US adults consume fruit about 1.1 times a day and vegetables 1.6 times a day. However, dietary guidelines recommend that everyone have between five and thirteen servings of fruits and vegetables daily, depending on caloric intake. For example, someone on a 2,000-calorie diet should have nine servings, or 4.5 cups of fruits and vegetables a day.
Incorporating more fruits and vegetables into one’s diet is not only good for maintaining healthy weight but also boasts other health benefits. From reducing the chance of a heart attack or stroke by as much as 30 percent to staving off dental caries and gum disease, these miracle foods should be a crucial part of any meal.
Warrenton, VA dentist, Dr. Jeffrey A. Harris, DDS, is jumping on the awareness bandwagon to promote healthy eating habits and healthier smiles. According to MyPlate, a website run by the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, a healthy diet includes fruits and vegetables that cover at least half of your plate, accompanied by whole grains, low-fat dairy and lean proteins.
Snacking is one way to wreak havoc on a healthy smile. However, Dr. Harris recommends that patients and parents make nutritious choices for themselves and their children when they do choose to snack. He notes that cheese, fruits, vegetables and nuts are healthy snacking options that can also protect teeth. Most starchy and sugary snacks and drinks can increase the chance of cavities and enamel wear. Dr. Harris recommends opting for healthier, smile-healthy choices when needing a small snack.
School lunches are another area in which the US falls flat. With over 23 million children and teens either overweight or obese, Dr. Harris notes that it’s important to see what each child is eating during lunchtime. Help promote the National School Lunch Program, which is making strides to ensure that every child can have a healthy, balanced school lunch. When packing lunches, Dr. Harris also advises that parents follow the same dietary rules that MyPlate suggests. Limiting sugar and other simple carbohydrates will also reduce a person’s risk for cavities. This Warrenton dentist also recommends checking nutrition labels to identify hidden sugar in certain foods.
Join Dr. Jeffrey A. Harris, DDS in this healthy-eating movement. To find out more about this awareness month, visit http://www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Harris call his office at (540) 347-2777, or request an appointment online: http://www.harrissmile.com.
About Dr. Jeffrey A. Harris, DDS: Dr. Harris has been offering dentistry to the Warrenton, VA area for over 25 years. After receiving his DDS from the Medical College of Virginia, he served as an overseas dentist with the United States Army. He is also an active member of several dental organizations including The American Dental Association and Academy of General Dentistry. Dr. Harris offers a range of dental services and specializes in cosmetic dentistry.