Kids and teenagers can be picky eaters, and it can be hard to come up with meals they will enjoy – and that are good for them.

It’s also tough to find foods that children and adults with braces can enjoy, given the dietary limitations those with braces face.

At Grace & Bowman Orthodontics in Fort Walton Beach and Niceville, we can advise patients about what foods are best to avoid during orthodontic treatment. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Grace & Bowman today.

To help families find recipes that are suitable for those who wear braces, well-known chef John Besh is working with the American Association of Orthodontists this month to remind everyone that that while some foods should be avoided during the Halloween season, there are alternatives that are delicious!

As part of National Orthodontic Health Month in October, Chef Besh has come up with some tasty, easy-to-make and orthodontic-friendly recipes.

Foods to steer clear of include nuts, taffy, lollipops, popcorn, corn on the cob and apples, just to name a few. Eating hard, crunchy, sticky or chewy foods can damage braces and other orthodontic devices.

Broken orthodontic devices can cause teeth to stop moving, or a tooth can move in the wrong direction. Either scenario could cause unplanned and unwanted trips to the orthodontist.

Besh, a father of four, said he can relate to the need to come up with healthy and tasty meals that appeal to the entire family.

He said he selected recipes for the AAO that everyone will enjoy – and that will be safe for those under orthodontic care.

To see Besh’s recipes for Cauliflower Macaroni and Cheese, Yogurt Fruit Pops and Drew’s Cake, go to

AAO President Robert E. Varner said the association’s goal is to help every patient achieve healthy and beautiful smiles. He said eating the proper foods helps patients reach those goals.

The American Association of Orthodontists was founded in 1900 and today is the oldest and largest dental specialty organization in the world, boasting 17,000 members throughout the U.S., Canada and around the world.

About Chef John Besh:
A native of Louisiana, Besh is a chef dedicated to the culinary traditions of the southern part of his home state. In his restaurants, business pursuits and public life, Chef Besh promotes and preserves techniques, ingredients and heritage.

Chef Besh came of age in southern Louisiana and has been known for setting the benchmark for fine dining in the city of New Orleans– a town where food is enmeshed with its identity and its soul.

Chef Besh has eight top-rated restaurants that celebrate the bounty and traditions of the region. He also is the author of three cookbooks – My New Orleans, My Family Table and Cooking from the Heart.

Besh also hosts two national public television cooking shows that are based on his award-winning books: “Chef John Besh’s New Orleans,” and “Chef John Besh’s Family Table.”

Try his orthodontic-friendly recipes at home this month, or any time!