Healthy options for the fourth of July
SUMMARY: The Fourth of July is a celebratory holiday for many, but there's no reason why you should suffer from bad breath because of unhealthy foods.
Posted: July 3, 2013
The Fourth of July is a time for Americans to celebrate our freedom and spend time with family and friends. But the underlying meaning to this exciting holiday is to relax with some delicious food, a cold drink and maybe a few sparklers. While you might throw a couple of dogs and burgers on the grill, there are plenty of healthy alternatives you can whip up as well.
Weather on the Fourth can get pretty steamy in some locations, and there's no better way to cool down than with a refreshing popsicle. But most of the popsicles you buy in the store are filled with sugar, which won't do much for you from a health perspective. Plus, the sticky sweetness may cause bad breath. Instead, try these simple recipe to please your guests, keep cool and fight common heat ailments like dry mouth from dehydration.
Skewers or kabobs are a great party food because they are easy to eat and don't really require a plate to enjoy! Instead of the traditional meat and veggies, you can opt for a completely vegetarian alternative that will provide guests with vitamins to get rid of bad breath and more.
For these, all you'll need is some mini fresh mozzarella, a medley mix of fresh tomatoes, fresh basil leaves, red pepper flakes, sea salt and wooden skewers. You'll put one ball of mozzarella on each skewer and alternate between tomatoes and fresh basil for a unique twist on the classic Caprese salad. Although tomatoes are acidic in nature, which can cause damage to the mouth, the high vitamin C content is beneficial. Plus, the calcium in the mozzarella can also help with battling bad breath. That's right, cheese is actually a helpful component to get rid of stinky breath and keep the mouth healthy.
Added bonus: The basil in these skewers is a powerful component to keep fresh breath! Chewing fresh basil prevents the accumulation of bacteria in your mouth because it contains antimicrobial properties and flavonoids that directly work to interfere with the microorganisms that are trying to release volatile sulfur compounds that cause bad breath.
Red, white & blue popsicles
Of course, you have to be festive with your treats! These popsicles use fresh blueberries and raspberries, but you could also use cherries or strawberries if you'd like. When you're outside all day long, dehydration is very possible, and that can cause dry mouth in no time. Fruits like those used in this frozen bar contain antioxidants and vitamins that help to battle the anaerobic bacteria in your mouth, which causes bad breath. You'll have to make these treats within at least six hours before you're ready to serve them, but they only take about 10 minutes to make!
For this recipe, you'll need 1 1/2 cups of raspberries, 1 cup of blueberries and 2 cups of limeade - you can make a simple limeade with 1/2 cup fresh lime juice (about six limes), 2/3 cup sugar and 2 quarts cold water. Simply divide blueberries and raspberries evenly among the freezer-pop molds and fill the tray up with limeade. Place popsicle sticks in each one, and let them sit for at least six hours.
Voila! These refreshing treats will keep dry mouth and bad breath at bay during your Fourth of July party, and they will be a delicious spread under the summer sun.
In addition to these yummy treats, make sure to provide your guests with plenty of water to stay hydrated and healthy.