Click here to return Home         FAMILY GENTLE DENTAL CARE
                                                        DR. DAN PETERSON

                                                                      1415 SAGE STREET ~ GERING, NEBRASKA 69341 
      Call: 308-436-3491           

| Home | Our Office | Services | Staff | Patient Education | Site Map |

     Sugar Usage Recommendations

Choose fresh, delicious, ripen fruit!


  1.  Try to reduce your sugar intake by limiting desserts:

    bulletTo once or twice a week
    bulletTry using less sugar in recipes
    bulletLimit yourself to a single serving size
    bulletTry fresh fruit as dessert
    bulletTry using sugar substitutes to replace sugar in recipes
    bulletWatch out for huge serving sizes of desserts served in restaurants,
    bullet one serving can have a days worth of added sugar, share it with someone

2.     Snacks:

    Work to decrease the number of times you snack in a day and be aware of how long that food will stay on your teeth

    Trying snacking on foods that do not promote tooth decay:

   Cheese             Bananas                       Plain yogurt

                  Milk                    Raw vegetables           Pretzels

    Donít suck on candy or lollipops or try sugar free

    Brush after every snack

3.     Be aware of sugar in drinks:

    Flavored coffees and teas tastes so good due to their high sugar content

    Drink them with meals

    Use plain flavored coffee/teas and add you own sweetener or drink them black

4.     Soft drinks:  Soft drinks represent the single largest source of added sweeteners to our diet! They account for one-third of all calories we consume from added sweeteners, which adds up to more than 23 pounds of sugar from soft drinks yearly. Teens drink twice as much pop as milk. An average 12 ounce can of pop has 9-12 tsps of sugar.  The average 12-19 year old boy consumes 868 cans of pop/year.  Teens get 15 of their 34 teaspoons of sugar a day coming from pop. The average person consumes 47.4 gallons of pop/year!  This habit promotes tooth decay because it baths our teeth with sugar water for long periods of time. Try these ideas:

    Switch to sugar free pop

    Drink water

    Drink 100% juice

    Try drinking pop with a meal instead of between meals

    Brush your teeth BEFORE you consume pop due to itís acid content NOT after, which weakens the tooth structure causing abrasion and loss of tooth structure

  1. Foods high in sugar eaten as part of a meal cause less harm because more saliva is released during a meal, which helps wash foods from the mouth and helps lessen the effects of acids.
  2. Read food labels.  A food is likely to be high in sugar if the word sugar or its other names appear first or second in the ingredient list or if several types of sugars are listed.   Instead choice those foods that are lower in sugar content                     Up To Top
  3. Use mouth rinses with fluoride to increase tooth resistance to decay; they are now recognized as effective for all ages!

8.  Sealants on childrenís and adultís cavity free teeth

9.  Chew sugarless gum or fibrous fruits and vegetables to promote saliva flow which helps to clean your teeth

10. Drink water or milk at meals to help wash sugar off the teeth and neutralize the effects of sugar

11. Avoid foods high in sugar like candy, non-diet pop, jam, jelly, syrup or use sugar free

12. Get most of your carbohydrate (sugar) from nature starchy foods instead of highly processed foods

13. Visit your dentist every 6 months for a professional cleaning and exam

14. Eat a balanced diet with a variety of whole grains, fruit, vegetable, milk and meats.

15. Look for low sugar breakfast cereal with no more than 8 grams of sugar/serving

16. Go easy on adding sugar to food

17. Brush twice a day with a toothpaste with fluoride to help strengthen tooth structure to resist decay.


Up To Top

Discover where added sugar comes from:           


     Sugar, in moderation, can be part of healthful diet.  It provides energy and it helps food taste good, but like anything else it can add on pounds and cause cavities. Remember to enjoy a variety of foods and brush and floss often so you can keep on getting pleasure from these foods.

We eat - about 23 teaspoons of added sugars everyday.

Add up all those sugars and some people are eating more than half their body weight in sugars every year. More sugars mean more calories, which means more obesity and more health problems like diabetes and heart disease.

Up To Top

TIP: To determine how much sugar is in a serving, check the nutrition label for Sugars (listed in grams). Divide the number of grams by four. For example, in the image below, sugars are listed as 12 g. Divide that by four and you get three teaspoons of sugar per serving.


Granulated Sugar in Measuring Cup


Targeting the tongue's sweet spots

One elusive goal - and a potentially lucrative one for many food scientists - is an artificial, low-calorie sweetener that really tastes like sugar.

There are two receptors on the tongue that react with the confections we eat to send signals to the brain that produce the sensation of sweetness.This is the very first paper where someone has measured the binding of the sweet compound to the receptor itself.

A variety of sweeteners compete for sales in our diet-crazed society. Aspartame, marketed as Nutrasweet and Equal, remains the top-selling artificial sweetener in the U.S., with about half the marketOther top sellers include saccharin (commonly sold as Sweet'N Low), sucralose (Splenda), and acesulfame potassium (acesulfame K), which isoften combined with other low-calorie sweeteners as an additive to foods and beverages.

Sucralose and sugar bonded with both receptors, and sucralose bonded much more tightly to both of them -
accounting for its sweeter taste. Sucralose bonded 300 times more effectively to T1R2 and up to five times more effectively to T1R3.

The system consists of bumps on the tongue, called papillae, that contain taste buds with dozens of taste cells. When the cells encounter molecules that give off flavors, they trigger a range of nerve signals to the brain.
A food's taste is determined by the sensations created by the taste cells and is enhanced by chemicals that create odors detected by olfactory neurons in the nose.Scientists say humans can detect five basic tastes: sweet, sour, bitter, salty and umami, a recently discovered taste created by salty, acidic compounds such as the flavor enhancer MSG.

It's a myth that different regions of the tongue trigger bitter and sweet tastes, Munger said. There are a few more bitter taste receptors on the back of the tongue than elsewhere, but different types of receptors are scattered everywhere, he said. The myth is believed to have started with a mistranslation of a German report on receptors that made its way into U.S. textbooks.

There are only two known types of sweet receptors, which is why sweetness may be the most difficult sensation to create on the tongue. But there are 30 different types of receptors for bitter flavors -

Much of what we know about taste receptors also is fairly new. The receptors themselves weren't discovered until the late 1990s.

By Dennis O'Brien Sun Reporter Originally published  November 18, 2005

Up To Top

 Sugar Generation    Nutrition Topics Index    Patient Education    Home    


          If you have any questions please e-mail me at:
                                                                                 308-436-3491 Office number

PLEASE NOTE: The information contained herein is intended for educational purposes only.  It is not intended and should not be construed as the delivery of dental/medical care and is not a substitute for personal hands on dental/medical attention, diagnosis or treatment.  Persons requiring diagnosis, treatment, or with specific questions are urged to contact your family dental/health care provider for appropriate care.
This site is privately and personally sponsored, funded and supported by Dr. Peterson.  We have no outside funding.
Confidentiality of data including your identity, is respected  by this Web site. We undertake to honor or exceed the legal requirements of medical/health information privacy that apply in Nebraska.

Copyright ©1998-2008 Family Gentle Dental Care, all rights reserved.