If you’re trying to improve your health (both oral and whole body), checking in with your sugar consumption is one of the first things to try. With all the added sweeteners in many of the foods and snacks we eat, the amount is usually much higher than you expect. And the more sugar we eat, the more we crave it – leading to a vicious cycle that can end in cavities, weight gain, and even diabetes.
The World Health Organization’s most recent sugar consumption guidelines recommend that just 5% of our daily energy comes from sugar. What does that mean, exactly? It translates to about 25 grams (or 6 teaspoons) of sugar. And when you think about how much sugar is in the daily foods and drinks that you consume, it’s really not very much. Take a closer look at your eating habits to start making a difference.
Checking in with Nutrition Facts to Spot Sugar
Not sure how much sugar is in the common things that you eat? Check the nutrition guidelines to learn more. You can view nutrition facts online, or find an app for your phone that will keep you up-to-date throughout the day.
Alternatives to High-Sugar Snacks
It’s important to avoid candy, chips, soda, and the other treats that we love to eat throughout the day. Once you start getting accustomed to healthier alternatives, you’ll find that you don’t miss the bad guys. Try some of the following for nutritious, delicious, and health-boosting options:
Fresh fruit (try to limit citrus, as it can erode your enamel)
Plain yogurt with fruit
Fresh vegetables with hummus
Water (an added note about water: in addition to hydrating you and keeping you healthy, it also washes bacteria and acids from your teeth, improving cavity and disease prevention).