Sugar intake should be cut in half to prevent cavities

We understand that planning a healthful diet is time-consuming and can seem difficult. One factor is sugar as total caloric intake and sugar’s effect on body weight. But sugar intake also impacts the prevalence of cavities.

In the United States, around 92% of adults aged 20-64 have experienced cavities in at least one of their permanent teeth. To tackle the growing problem of tooth decay, researchers say the World Health Organization’s recommendation of a maximum of 10% total daily calories from free sugar should be reduced to 5%, with 3% as a target. The World Health Organization (WHO) defines free sugar as any monosaccharides and disaccharides that a manufacturer, cook or consumer adds to foods. Sugars naturally present in honey, syrup, and fruit juices are also classed as free sugars.

Why the focus on sugars? Because sugar feeds bacteria in the mouth, and those bacteria produce byproducts that cause plaque buildup and acids that remove tooth enamel. Fending off bacteria means limiting its food supply: sugars. If you have questions about your diet and your dental health, we can help!


Whiteman, H. (2014, September 16). “WHO’s recommended sugar intake ‘should be halved to combat dental cavities’.” Medical News Today. Retrieved from


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