Study Finds Sugar Intake Reduction Is Best Prevention Of Tooth Decay

July 12, 2017 by Dr David Bloom

Dental Health, Diet

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Study confirms that sugar is bad for our teeth

This statement was at the core of new research conducted by academics at the University of Newcastle. They found that cutting sugar intake to a maximum of five teaspoons a day can prevent tooth decay.

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For more than two decades, the World Health Organisation has advised people to consume no more than 10% of their daily calorie intake in the form of “free sugars”. These are sugars added to food products by manufacturers or by consumers.

However, the study, published in the Journal of Dental Research, found that this amount should be halved to 5% to reduce the risk of developing tooth cavities for life.

According to Paula Moynihan, professor of nutrition and oral health at Newcastle University, the problem is that sugary drinks and foods are an integral part of Western culture’s everyday life, which makes it very hard to maintain our teeth in a good condition over a lifetime.

People today live longer than ever before and their teeth need to serve them well for longer. In order to make sure this is possible, people need to cut down on sugar intake, she explained.

The research also concluded that while fluoridation of tap water could certainly reduce the risk of tooth cavities, it cannot eliminate the causes of decay and damage to tooth enamel altogether.

The best way to fight tooth decay is to reduce sugar intake, researchers concluded.

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A high sugar diet can greatly increase the likelihood of tooth decay and enamel erosion. Find out more about how your diet affects your oral health. We have compiled a list of common foods with their sugar content measured in teaspoons.

Page created: July 12, 2017 Medically reviewed & updated on December 15, 2021

Medically Reviewed By:

Dr David Bloom

Reviewed by Dr David Bloom


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Dr David Bloom

About the Author: David Bloom, an award-winning restorative dentist, is an avid advocate of preventative dentistry ensuring that all dentistry is based upon a healthy sound foundation. He has been highly sought after and trusted by not only celebrities but also by colleagues within the dental profession who are seeking treatment for themselves. He is respected and recognised as a leader in the cosmetic and dental reconstruction fields of dentistry. See About |  Meet the Team |