Where did we as a nation go wrong? I remember growing up and mom doing the cooking. Now I am 36, so growing up wasn’t too long ago. Eating healthy meals wasn’t difficult. You had your vegetable, your protein, and if you were good and ate all of your food, you had your dessert.
Sugar isn’t anything new. In fact my dessert as a kid could have been an apple or a cookie and both of those contain that wonderful sweetness we all desire. Furthermore, who doesn’t like sweets? It’s ok to not like something for being too bitter, or salty, but you can not deny the sugar. So sugar for all of us has been around since the beginning yet we are becoming an unhealthier nation. Notice I did not say fatter. Yes we are fatter, but I have younger and younger people who appear slim but have diabetes at an extremely early age- from mid to late 20’s.
U.S. children for the first time in history have lesser of a chance to outlive their parents. Amazing, right? Look we all know we are becoming an unhealthier nation. Some of y’all reading this applaud Michael Bloomberg for making his strides in trying to limit soda intake, and some of you may abhor him. Regardless, he recognizes type 2 diabetes is on the rise, and so is obesity. Secondly, he sees one big thing a lot of the media hasn’t touched on and that is the effects of sugar in the form of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS).
HFCS is now in the majority of products that we consume. From bread, to salad dressings, it’s there. Don’t believe me? Just run into your local Kroger, Pathmark or Publix and look around. Yes, even cereals have it.
So what does this have to do with teeth? I mean this whole time I have been talking sugar yet not talking about decay. Well before I wander into the teeth thing, remember carbohydrates break down into sugar. Where carbohydrates initially break down is in the mouth. So the primary area for sugar break down is the mouth, and if you are eating a primarily Standard American Diet, you are eating A LOT of sugar. More sugar will equal more dental cavities. Even more extreme, diabetes can lead to gum disease and tooth loss.
Tooth loss is not sexy. I say that a lot, but it’s true. For those of you reading this, consider going back to the basics- protein, fruits and veggies. Get rid of soda- diet and otherwise. Consider spaghetti squash to replace spaghetti. It’s wonderful. Eat a banana instead of eating something banana flavored.
Do one thing, and notice the difference. What’s the worst that could happen???
…Healthier teeth and a healthier you!!