How to Eat Without Teeth

People of all ages stick to soft diets.
People of all ages stick to soft diets. (Image: Jupiterimages/ Images)

Tooth loss can occur at any age for a number of reasons - tooth decay, gum disease or even accidents. If you're missing teeth and dentures aren't a viable or comfortable option, you can maintain your good health by eating softer, yet nutritious foods. You can enjoy satisfying meals, including your favorite dishes, by changing the consistency of your foods so the require less chewing and are easy to swallow.

Things You'll Need

  • Food processor
  • Blender

Keep an eye on nutrition. Just because the texture and consistency of the foods you eat might have to change, doesn't mean your body needs fewer nutrients. Eat a variety of foods, including lean meats, dairy, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and healthy fats. If you want some guidance, speak with a dietitian who can help you customize your meal plan.

Use a food processor or blender to soften foods you might not be able to swallow on your own. These appliances can blend or puree just about any meal, giving you options for how thick, thin, chunky or smooth you want your final product to be. Add liquids such as broths and juices to help moisten your foods.

Drink plenty of fluids, shooting for six to eight glasses of liquids, such as water, each day. Avoid sweet drinks like sodas, which contain a lot of sugar.

Try blending foods to varying consistencies to see what is easiest for you to swallow. Through trial and error, you may discover you can eat foods you thought were off-limits. Some foods don't need to be blended or processed in order to be consumed safely. Moist, soft foods, like oatmeal, pudding, applesauce, yogurt and mashed potatoes, are good ready-to-eat choices.

Use a blender to make smoothies with mixtures of fruits and/or soft vegetables. Your imagination is the limit when it comes to smoothie combinations. Try different combinations -- berries, bananas and milk or peanut butter, bananas and yogurt -- to make a satisfying snack.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always consult with your doctor or caregiver before committing to any diet or before making changes to your regular diet.

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