It has been drilled in our minds that a little sugar intake is okay if it is in moderation. But how much is too much? Studies show that Americans average 20 tablespoons of added sugar per day (excluding natural sugars) which is more than double the amount recommended.
Constantly consuming sugar is bad for your teeth no matter your age. The most noticeable affect is the formation of cavities. Your mouth’s bacteria also feeds on the sugar’s acids and speeds up plaque growth which can eat away at your tooth enamel. Some extreme sugar cases can lead to tooth decay or tooth loss. Here are some simple ways to change these bad sugar habits.
Stock up on Foods with Natural Sugars
Fruits, vegetables, cheeses, peanut butter, and yogurt are great alternatives and can help to satisfy those sweet cravings!
Start the Day with a Savory Breakfast
Kicking off your morning with a sweet breakfast sets you up for sugar cravings throughout the day. Savory breakfasts will keep you full longer and make you less likely to snack on sweets!
Shop on a Full Stomach
Going to the food store with an empty stomach often compels people to buy those sugary treats. If you have a snack before you shop, you are more likely to stick to your shopping list and dietary goals.
Ditch the Sugary Drinks
Sodas and sugar-filled juices often get into hard-to-reach places in your month, making it harder to remove these sugars when it comes time to brush your teeth. Replace these types of drinks with unsweetened teas, natural juices, or water. Does water taste too boring? Try infusing it with fresh fruit to give it a little flavor!
Reach for Dark Chocolate
Chances are that you will not be able to cut sugar entirely out of your diet. Choosing dark chocolate is a healthier alternative to candy, cakes, or cookies because it has half the sugar content.
Cutting back on sugar goes far beyond solely helping your oral hygiene. It betters your overall health too! Eating less sugar can lower the risk for diabetes, clear up skin, increase cognitive function, lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and regulate your metabolism. Additionally, it can also reduce the risk of stroke, heart attack, and heart disease.