There's no better time than summer to get together for a barbecue and some laughs with your friends. And, while you might be excited about putting together a menu that features some favorite foods to enjoy around the backyard pool, it's also worth thinking about the fare that can positively impact your dental health. Just as some foods can be detrimental to your teeth, others can play a helpful role in your ability to have a healthy mouth. Find a way to add these foods to your next summer cookout and you'll have an extra reason to smile.

Sliced Veggies

In addition to possessing a wide range of health benefits, several vegetables can play a positive role in your ability to maintain a healthy mouth. Eating veggies such as carrots and celery keep your salivary glands active, which helps to wash bacteria from your mouth and, if you've been eating sugary food or drinks, clean your teeth. Other vegetables that are high in water, such as cucumbers, can also partner with your naturally occurring saliva to keep your mouth clean and fresh. Assemble a tray of freshly sliced vegetables for your next gathering and you'll be taking an active role in the oral health of all your guests.

Dairy Products

Dairy products can be beneficial to your teeth as long as they're not loaded with sugar; sorry, that bowl of ice cream is going to do more harm than good for your smile. Dairy products such as cheese, milk, and unsweetened yogurt are high in calcium, which can help to strengthen your tooth enamel to protect against cavities. The added bonus? These products also help to counteract the enamel damage caused by acidic foods. The protein found in dairy products can help give you a full feeling, which can limit your temptation to indulge in unhealthy snacks to satisfy a craving, too.

Fiber-Rich Foods

Foods with a high fiber content are beneficial to your digestive system, but can also positively impact your oral health. The ample chewing necessary to swallow fiber -rich foods allows them to essentially scrub your teeth while generating plenty of saliva. Several types of food pack an impressive fibrous punch. If you're interested in fruits, go for raspberries, strawberries, apples and pears. Among vegetables, sweet corn and potatoes with the skin left on are healthy fiber sources and ideal for summer cookouts. Although not necessarily conducive to barbecue, legumes, and whole grains are also ideal.