Foods to Avoid (& enjoy) at a BBQ in Braces

It’s smack-dab in the middle of summer, and on every block during the weekends, you’re catching hints of the heavenly scent of beef, pork, and/or chicken being grilled to perfection! Nothing is better than charbroiled deliciousness, but when you’re clad in braces, you should be aware that there are certain foods that can ruin your summer fun.

Corn on the Cob - A food to avoid with braces

Top 5 BBQ foods to avoid this summer
(with equally delicious options to swap them for)

1. Corn on the Cob

Okay, so no BBQ is complete without corn on the cob, because who doesn’t love that fresh, seared corn smothered in butter and salt?! You might want to risk a bite of that cob, but don’t do it! You can get your corn fix by eating corn off the cob just as easily without sacrificing the flavor you love! Simply cut the corn from the cob before enjoying this BBQ staple. As a bonus, you’ll find this way of dining on those sweet golden kernels is a lot less messy!


2. Grilled Steaks

It’s a bummer because most of us LOVE a tender, juicy, perfectly marbled slab of beef, but steak is just too tough for the hardware in your mouth. And while you may be tempted to just go for it and risk messing up your braces, you can choose more sensible options (and avoid the trip to your orthodontist) by selecting fall-off the bone faves such as BBQ ribs and chicken. As long as the meat is tender, you can dig right in without fearing a broken bracket!


3. Pretzels and Corn Chips

Yes, most BBQs always have some sort of pretzel or corn chip option, but these crunchy faves can wreck your braces faster than you can swallow the first mouthful, so skip them completely and opt for a lightweight cracker with cheese. Not only is the cheese gentle on your braces, but it adds the benefit of calcium to your snacking, which your teeth will thank you for! And if you really can’t survive without just one taste of your favorite pretzel or corn chip, it’s ok to indulge as long as you eat them slowly and chew them carefully with your back teeth.


4. Ice

Many of us are guilty of crunching and munching on ice to cool down, especially if we’re at the end of our cup of sweet tea. It’s almost an unconscious act to bite down on ice, but avoid the temptation by enjoying a popsicle or an ice cream cone instead for a sweet indulgence to keep you from melting. Both options are more flavorful than ice and will cool you down without hurting your delicate braces!


5. Raw Fruits or Vegetables

We know that raw fruits and vegetables are good for your body and keep your teeth and gums strong, but they are not always friendly to the brackets and wires that are straightening your smile. If you want a little fruit with your barbequed meat, then opt for soft fruits like melons, berries, and grapes, or cut hard fruits into small, bite sized pieces and eat them with your back teeth. The same thing goes for hard, crunchy veggies, but if you’re close to the grill master at the BBQ, simply ask them to whip you up some grilled vegetables wrapped in tin foil and brushed with olive oil and fresh herbs—grilling the veggies will soften them up, punch them up with tons of flavor, and keep you from an emergency visit to the orthodontist!


Now that you’re prepared to head to that next neighborhood BBQ with a braces-friendly snack plan, the only hard part will be deciding if you prefer sweet or spicy barbecue sauce more on that perfectly ‘qued pork or chicken! If you do slip up and need a little help from your orthodontist, the team at Island Orthodontics can fix your braces back up in no time! If you haven’t been fitted with braces yet but you are ready to commit to a straighter smile, call Island Orthodontics today at (251) 968-1310 (in the Baldwin area) or (251) 344-7604 (in the Mobile area) for your free consultation or simply contact us here today to find a orthodontic plan that’s right for you!



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