I’m wondering what foods are safe to eat when I get Invisalign. I know the general rule with braces is that you have to avoid chewy or sticky stuff because it can damage the braces, but you don’t wear Invisalign while you eat. So, does my diet have to change at all?
The main reason why I’m asking is because I’ve been on the paleo diet for about a year now and I’m doing really well on it. However, I’m not really much of a meat eater and I never have been. I eat a lot nuts and eat an apple just about every day. I’m worried that going through ortho will somehow relegate me to meals outside the paleo diet and, if so, I’m just not up for that.
You should be totally in the clear doing the paleo diet while you’re using the Invisalign system. As you noted, the real worry is, with braces, that you’ll damage the wires or pull your brackets off. Because you wouldn’t be wearing the aligners while you eat, none of that is a concern.
The only potential pitfall is that your teeth will become mobile while you go through any kind of ortho. They have to or they wouldn’t move to their intended spaces. Right when you start and when you switch aligners, you’ll notice some sensitivity and it will probably get worse if you’re eating hard and crunchy foods. Everyone is a little different. You may be ok if you’re going with softer nuts like cashews, but chances are, you’ll probably want to give them up periodically throughout. To be fair, the apples could become a problem too.
However, where there’s will, there’s a way. If you’re experiencing sensitivity or achiness as you transition between aligners and your mouth is telling you apples and nuts are a no-go, something like a fruit puree could work. You’ve probably seen those in little pouches at the grocery store. Some companies mix in veggies too. You can also mix your own purees or do a kind of smoothie.
There are ways to get protein in too. For example, eggs are a fantastic source. Legumes are typically out, which means no peanut butter, refried beans, soy, or chickpeas, but these are all healthier non-meat options if you’re willing to bend the rules for a few days. You can also choose things like avocado and spinach, which both have decent protein and are paleo. Of course, there’s also spirulina, which has 4g of protein per tablespoon and is often hailed as a paleo superfood, though some people report upset stomachs when they ingest it in large quantities.
The bottom line is, you know what foods you like and what fits within your diet. You can certainly find ways to modify your meals during the tender times, and it’s a good idea to come up with a list of alternatives before you start treatment. If you have worries that you won’t be getting the nutrition you need because some foods may be out for short periods of time, you can also consult with a nutritionist in advance.
This blog is sponsored by Dr. Steve Sirin, an Elgin Invisalign provider.