Dr. Joel Butterworth, a woman, and a dog in a kitchen

Nutrition and Oral Health

Nutrition and Oral Health

Proper diet for optimal oral health

A healthy diet full of fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains is good for our oral health. We all know that sugar is bad for our teeth and can lead to tooth decay. It is important to limit the amount of sugar in your diet. This includes sugary drinks such as soda, sweet tea, juice, energy drinks, and drinks with added sweeteners. We recommend reading all nutritional labels. Did you know, milk before bed is a leading cause of cavities in children?

How you can help prevent cavities in your children’s teeth

One of the ways to prevent cavities in your children’s teeth is to limit sugary treats, drinks, juices, and milk before bed. If you establish good nutrition and oral hygiene habits early, your kids will have an easier time keeping them later on. You can help teach your kids the importance of a healthy diet and oral health. If you help them establish good diet and nutritional routines, then taking care of their teeth will become part of that daily routine. The only thing your children should drink after brushing their teeth before bed is water.

Dr. Butterworth’s favorite recipe

Discover what works best for you and your family. There is no shortage of healthy diets and everyone’s needs and preferences are different.  At the Smile Center, Dr. Butterworth encourages all patients to eat healthy by avoiding processed foods and sugars which is a great start to improving oral health.

Dr. Butterworth’s Sunday Brunch – Shakshuka with Feta (a NYT Recipe from Melissa Clark)

  • Ingredients 
    • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
    • 1 large red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
    • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
    • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
    • ⅛ teaspoon ground cayenne
    • 1 (28-ounce) can whole plum tomatoes with their juices, coarsely chopped
    • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
    • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
    • 5 ounces feta, crumbled (about 1¼ cups)
    • 6 large eggs
    • Chopped cilantro 
  • Preparation: 
    • Heat oven to 375 degrees. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium low. Add onion and bell pepper. Cook gently until very soft, about 20 minutes. Add garlic and cook until tender, 1 to 2 minutes; stir in cumin, paprika and cayenne, and cook for 1 minute. Pour in tomatoes and season with ¾ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper; simmer until tomatoes have thickened, about 10 minutes. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Stir in crumbled feta.
    • Gently crack eggs into skillet over tomatoes. Season eggs with salt and pepper. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until eggs are just set, 7 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve with hot sauce.


If you are interested in scheduling an appointment contact us in Fredericksburg or Ashland to schedule your appointment today.

Published: November 17, 2022


Author: Dr. Joel Butterworth

Joel S. Butterworth, DDS is the dentist and owner of Fredericksburg Smile Center and Ashland Smile Center. Dr. Butterworth has specialized training and clinical experience in all fields of general dentistry as well as advanced training in anesthesia and pain control, TMJ disorders, dental oncology, and emergency medicine.