Diet in America has often been treated like a panacea. Eat the right foods, don’t eat other foods, and you can cure anything from daytime tiredness to dementia. We’ve even mentioned a few recent studies ourselves. Whether or not there is actually a gum disease diet is up for debate, but one thing that’s not, is how bad sugar is for all of us. If you’re hoping to make a change just before summer hits, there’s probably not a better change you could make (except maybe giving up smoking) that could do your body better than giving up sugar.

Still don’t believe us? Here’s three reasons you should consider.

Woman hand holding sugar cubes with thumbs down. Are you ready to cut sugar from your diet?

Lower Chances of Heart Disease

Did you know that having a high sugar intake means you’re significantly more at risk of contracting the disease? One 15-year study compared people who consume more than 25% of their daily calories as sugar, and those who consume less than 10% of their daily calories as sugar. The result was staggering: Those higher sugar consumers were more than twice as likely to die of heart disease. In fact, regardless of other demographic factors, a higher percentage of sugar consumption demonstrated higher odds of dying from heart disease on every level.

You Want More Energy

Tired of being tired? Sugar might be the culprit. You have cells in your brain called orexin cells, and these cells are responsible for waking you up and getting your metabolism going. Unfortunately, sugar can actually decrease the activity of these energizing cells, making you feel fatigued. If you’ve ever wondered why you feel sluggish after eating a big meal, check the sugar content of what you just ate (or the carb content, since those are quickly converted into sugars once consumed) — it may clear up the mystery.

Want to reverse this trend? Try a protein-rich meal to lend you some energy.

You Care About Your Teeth

You’ve probably heard that sugar causes cavities. It’s not quite that simple, but the cause-and-effect is still there. Here’s what happens: There are bacteria in your mouth that feed on sugar. When they find some sugar to eat, they in turn produce acid. Plaque (that gummy stuff that you brush off your teeth every morning and night) helps stick sugar and bacteria to your teeth, so that when that acid is produced, it ends up right on top of your enamel. Enamel is strong, but when that acid does its work, your enamel can become weakened, leaving an opening for that bacteria to get in and turn into cavities.

Sugar might be delicious, but it’s a not your friend! Cutting down sugar in the new year could be good for your teeth, your energy levels, your skin, and your heart. So why not try it?

If you are overdue for a general dentistry check-up or have a dental need, please call (803) 781-9090 or contact Smile Columbia Dentistry in Columbia South Carolina today for an appointment.