Sometimes, we’re just not able to resist a sugary snack. Whether it’s the dessert menu at a restaurant that’s calling out to you or a packet of sweets when you go to see a movie, there are times when you just can’t help getting a bit of sugar into your system. This is fine in moderation, but if sugar is a key player in your diet, then you might be in for trouble.
When a diet contains too much sugar, tooth decay is almost certain. When the plaque in your mouth comes into contact with the sugar, it allows acid to attack your teeth, wearing down the protective layer of enamel and letting tooth decay and cavities run free. Tooth decay is an increasing problem for both adults and children, so when it comes to your diet, you need to be smart. For healthy teeth, a low sugar diet will always be best.
However, it isn’t always easy to stick to a low sugar diet when plenty of foods that appear healthy on the surface are actually packed full with hidden sugars. We know that sweets, cakes, pastries, and fizzy drinks are full of sugar, but it’s all too easy to think you’re sitting down to a healthy, nutritious meal, when you’re actually eating a mouthful of secretly sugary ingredients.
Just some foods that include secret sugars are:
- Cereals – even the kinds like granola and oatmeal which seem like a healthy option
- Low-calorie drinks – many people are tricked into thinking low calorie = low sugar!
- Sauces, dressing, and condiments – these are often packed with hidden sugar
- Meal replacement and snack bars – even though they seem healthy, they’re often not
- Dried fruit and fruit snacks – if in doubt, stick to the real thing!
So what can you do to avoid the sugars that are hiding in your everyday foods? One of the best ways to combat hidden sugars is to read the labels of the food you buy and look out for some of the names that sugar is often disguised as. These include:
- High-fructose corn syrup
- Rice syrup
By keeping an eye on your food labels and eliminating anything that has a high content of any of these ingredients, you’ll be well on your way to a low sugar diet that will improve your dental health and keep you smiling.
Alongside sticking to a low sugar diet, brushing twice a day and flossing regularly, you should also make regular visits to your dentist to keep on top of your oral health.
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