Having a sweet tooth can take a toll on our oral health. Whether we’re constantly eating sugar all day or satisfying a strong craving after dinner; the bacteria in our mouths feed off of the sugars we consume causing damaging effects in the long-run. However, there are alternative ways to satisfy your sweet tooth while still keeping your mouth healthy, here are the options:
Fresh Fruit: When you feel the craving coming on, grab a piece of fruit; an orange, apple or banana! Fruits have natural sugar to suppress your cravings.
Berries: A cup of berries may be what your body needs! Pack with nutrients and vitamins, berries also contain natural sugars and can fill you up to kill the cravings.
Tea: Teas come in many options and different flavors, but contains no sugar! Look for cinnamon based or fruit-based teas to help curb the cravings.
Dried Fruits: Dried fruit has a higher concentration of natural sugars. Prunes, apricots or figs are low in calories and come in convenient packets that stay fresh for you for an all-day snack!
Something Savory: A way to kick the cravings is to trick your pallet by drinking thick liquids such as drinkable yogurts/probiotic yogurts or tomato juice. Savory drinks is a good source of nutrients and a great way to subdue that sweet tooth!
Vegetables: For those on a diet and really want to shy away from sweets, preparing snacks consisted of sweet potatoes, or butternut squash will help calm the yearning. By cooking, baking or simply roasting these veggies can ward off the craving and are naturally sweet with an excellent source of fiber too!
Peanut Butter: Peanut butter goodness can curb that sweet tooth! When buying the right type of peanut butter, make sure to read the label and aim for the low- or no-sugar options to keep your teeth healthy!
Coconut: Coconut is low in sugar but sweet in flavor! Today with the craving for all things coconut, it’s ok to jump on this train. When shopping, be wary of sweetened coconut, make sure you get unsweetened coconut chips or dried coconut shavings to help add a touch a sweetness to your meals.
Ice Cream: Yes, it’s ok to indulge in ice cream! Some stores carry low-sugar or sugar-free, but the best ice cream is the ones that are homemade. A fun project for the kids or the family in general, you can make a healthier version with natural sugars from fruits and you can top this treat off with shaved unsweetened coconut or almonds!
Go Greek: When in doubt, go Greek! Plain Greek yogurt with fresh fruit (homemade parfaits) can be an alternative to breaking the sweet tooth addiction. You can always switch it up by adding (almond) nuts or coconut shavings in your parfait but still conforms to your healthy eating habits.
These healthy alternatives are a great way to practice good oral health habits. Brushing and flossing after meals are still the main oral routines that keep the sugars out of your mouth and out of the way!