Choose your Teeth Over Sugar
In America, we have created a culture of sugar consumption. From chocolate to tasty pastries, sugar is integrated so deep into our way of life. Now, I’m not talking about the fructose you get from fruit or the small amounts of sugar found in healthy veggies such as corn. No, I’m talking about the super-sized donut you have been guilty of munching on. Hey, don’t sweat it; we have all been there. The good news is that you don’t have to avoid sweets altogether to get the flavor you crave. Instead, try to avoid added sugars, like sucrose, corn syrup, high-fructose corn syrup and molasses. These sugars add calories to your diet and have no nutritional value. They also destroy teeth! Instead, artificial sweeteners can reduce your calorie intake and also help people who have chronic conditions like diabetes manage their disease, according to the American Dietetic Association. And these sugar substitutes also can help prevent cavities. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the following sweeteners: Acesulfame-K: One of the few low-calorie sweeteners that can be heated without losing sweetness, which makes it great for baking. It’s in some candies, cough drops, frozen desserts, beverages and breath mints. Aspartame: Used in diet drinks, cereal, gum and as a tabletop sweetener. Neotame: A general-purpose sweetener used in a wide variety of products. Saccharin: This popular low-calorie sweetener has been in use for more than a century. Sucralose: Stays sweet when heated, so you can cook with it. This sweetener is in some cereals, beverages and other prepared foods. Xylitol: This is the sweetener we recommend in gum and other small candies. It has the ability to fight the bacteria that feed off of sugar and cause dental decay.So don’t worry if you indulge your sweet tooth on occasion. Just keep in mind there are sugar substitutes to help keep your teeth healthy.