Gina Liggio Maestri, DDS

Dental Blog

How to Curb Your Sweet Tooth

Hannah Johnson - Thursday, January 24, 2019

Many people know that sugar can cause cavities but have you ever thought of how? According the NICDR, the mouth is full of beneficial bacteria that is good for your oral health but certain harmful oral bacteria feeds on sugars that you eat, this creates acid that can lead to cavities. Without treatment, cavities can destroy the enamel which causes pain and possible tooth loss. Knowing this, we hope you take these tips into consideration when trying to control your sugar intake and not letting it control you!

Nourish Your Body with the Nutrients It Really Needs The problem with sugar is not that we’re enjoying a little every now and then, it’s that we are indulging too much throughout the day and eating sugar just makes us crave more sugar, especially when our meals are not giving us the nutrients we need to feel satisfied. Meals that are high in good proteins like lean meats, legumes and eggs plus healthy fats like avocado and nuts plus fiber like fruits, vegetables, & chia seeds will help you to stay fuller for longer! Sugar cravings can also be caused by a mineral deficiency in magnesium, chromium, and zinc. So eating foods like dark leafy greens, sweet potatoes, and whole grains can regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels to help fight against sugar cravings! Dehydration can also be a cause of cravings so if you are wanting something sweet, drink a full glass of water to see if it subsides.

Utilize High Quality Essential Oils Grapefruit essential oil is a natural appetite suppressant, it curbs carb & sugar cravings, and helps balance your blood sugar! Simply getting a whiff of Peppermint essential oil can help with feeling more full. Another essential oil that balances blood sugar and suppresses appetite is Cinnamon Bark. The easiest way to get the benefits of these essential oils is to diffuse them in your home, another way is to put one or two drops in an 8oz glass of water if your essential oil labels state that they are safe to ingest.

Get the Sugar out of the House If you are serious about kicking your sugar cravings to the curb, it’s time to take control of your household! Sometimes, the reason we get a “craving” is simply out of habit. Maybe an hour after dinner, you enjoy a big bowl of ice cream while watching TV. If that’s the case, instead of keeping ice cream in your freezer, replace it with something healthier like a sliced apple with nut butter. It’s difficult to snack on things that aren’t there to begin with! Get rid of the sugary snacks, cakes, cereals, sodas, coffee creamers and ice cream. Replace them with fruit (especially berries), dark chocolate, sugar free gum, nut butters, yogurt, chia seeds, and sorbet.

Boost Your Happiness Low serotonin levels (the happy chemical) can cause sugar cravings. When you eat sweets and carbs, this can raise your serotonin levels which can make you feel better but this boost is only temporary. Sugar can actually deplete your body of this “happy” chemical long-term. Raise your serotonin levels by taking probiotics, eating foods high in vitamin D, C, and E, plus Omega-3 fatty acids and diffusing essential oils such as Lavender, Ylang Ylang, and Orange. Lower stress (cortisol levels) by meditating, going for a walk, doing something you enjoy like cooking or reading. When you’re consistent, simple habits such as these can lower stress over time.

Depending on your personality type, quitting sugar cold turkey may or may not work for you. For most people, taking it slow is the best way to go. For example, instead of 2 sugars in your coffee, switch to one, then none. When you do get a craving, enjoy foods like high quality dark chocolate, sweet potatoes, and that will give you just enough sweet along with wonderful nutrients for your body.

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5 Things You Can Do NOW for a Healthier Smile

Hannah Johnson - Saturday, January 12, 2019

During the Holiday season it’s easy to forget to eat right, drink enough water, & floss before bed because of how busy we get. Well, now is the time to get back in the groove! With the holidays behind us, it’s time to start moving forward with our oral health in 2019.

Put Down the Sugar. Sugar is like a magnet for bad bacteria in your mouth which can lead to tooth decay. People who snack on sugar frequently throughout the day, for example, sipping on sweet tea all day, are exposing their teeth to the damaging effects of sugar for a longer period of time and are at greater risk for tooth decay. If you have a sweet tooth, make sure to rinse your mouth thoroughly after eating something sugary so you can lessen the exposure.

Mouthwash. Mouth rinses can be a great addition to a regular oral care routine, it can help fight plaque and prevent tartar buildup. It also freshens breath, rinses away bacteria and can whiten your teeth! In addition to brushing your teeth morning and night for 2 minutes and flossing once a day, mouthwash can really boost your oral health!

Drink a Glass of Water. To keep your body healthy, it’s imperative to drink water daily but hydrating is also wonderful for your oral health! Drinking water throughout the day can actually prevent staining, since the water washes away sugars and food particles on your teeth. A common cause of bad breath is having a dry mouth so drinking water is a great way to combat morning breath!

Floss. I bet you knew that this one was coming! Unfortunately, brushing alone cannot reach the entire surface of your tooth so when you skip out on flossing, you’re missing one-third of your tooth’s surface! Think of all the bacteria and tooth-damaging germs you’re missing that could cause a cavity or even worse, gum disease! Take some time today, and every other day, to floss.

Schedule a Dentist Appointment. Some people think that skipping their dentist appointments is no big deal but we’ve found that when they wait to come in when a tooth is bothering them, it’s a problem that could have easily been fixed (and less expensive) if they had just kept their appointment. Dentists take a look at your overall oral health and can catch dental problems early on before it becomes a major issue.

Schedule your next appointment with us today @ 337-704-2126

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