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The UK’s Sugar Addiction

Examples of Sugary Sweet

The UK’s Sugar Addiction

23 January 2020

Over recent years, the amount of sugar we consume has grown exponentially. As of today, close to one third of the calories we consume come directly from sugars. Such a vast intake often leads to the same pattern: an initial rush, swiftly followed by a crash and eventual craving for more sugar. The extent of this problem is ever-growing, with the UK witnessing 170 daily NHS operations to remove rotten teeth.

It’s common knowledge that sugar is bad for your teeth but knowing exactly why is important if you’re to make changes to your lifestyle to help with oral health. Research has shown that harmful bacteria produce acid in your mouth whenever they encounter and digest sugar. These acids remove minerals from tooth enamel during a process called demineralisation.

Fortunately, saliva helps constantly reverse this damage in a natural process called remineralisation. It’s here that the minerals in our saliva, such as calcium and phosphate, help enamel repair itself, ultimately strengthening teeth.

Nevertheless, the repeated cycle of acid attacks causes mineral loss in the enamel. Over time, this weakens and destroys the enamel, forming a cavity. Postponing treatment can result in the cavity spreading into the deeper layers of the tooth, causing pain and possible tooth loss.

Etwall Dental Practice would like to offer some nutritional and behavioural tips to avoid falling into a sugar addiction:

Eat Regularly

It’s recommended that three meals and two snacks or five small meals a day are consumed. For the majority of people, a lack of regular eating means blood sugar levels drop, hunger develops, and people are more likely to crave sweets and sugary snacks.

Choose Whole Foods

Choosing a variety of whole foods rather than processed foods is key in helping prevent sugar addiction. The less processed sugar you consume, the better for your body. Food in its natural form often present no metabolic problems for your body.

The Best Breakfast

Start the day off the right way with a breakfast high in fats, phytonutrients and protein. Ideally, smoothies are best for this, as an easy way to consume all aforementioned aspects. Breakfasts that are full of carbs and starchy foods may prove detrimental, as you’ll no doubt have cravings for the rest of the day.

Get Active

Exercise, dance or yoga. Frequent movement at varied intensities will help reduce tension and boost energy, helping offset your need for a sugar lift.

Rest

Get enough sleep. When we are feeling fatigued, we often use sugar for energy to counteract the exhaustion.

Fortunately, the UK are looking to tackle the sugar addiction as early as possible, as the NHS are currently working with the dental profession to help 70,000 children see a dentist before they reach their second birthday.

Remember, tooth decay is preventable and eating sugary food and drinks is the driving force behind what is becoming an unnecessary epidemic. If you’d like any more advice on how best to maintain your teeth, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Etwall Dental Practice via our Contact page. Alternatively, if you feel as though tooth decay and cavities are an ongoing issue you’re experiencing, book a free consultation with one of our dental experts.

If you feel as though you’re in need of an alternative procedure, take a look at a full list of treatments available at Etwall Dental Practice.

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