Sweeteners and Tooth Decay
San Antonio, TX, Caloric natural sweeteners are divided in sugars – sucrose, glucose, dextrose, fructose, lactose, maltose – and natural caloric sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup, palm or coco sugar and sorghum syrup. Sugars are carbohydrates and are found naturally in many foods such as fruit, vegetables, cereals and milk. If good oral hygiene is not maintained they can be harmful to teeth.
According to the article A current and global review of sweeteners; regulatory aspects, a cavity is formed by the localized destruction of hard dental tissue by acidic material which comes from the fermentation processes carried out by certain pathogenic bacteria, cariogenic bacteria, from fermentable carbohydrates present in the diet. Other factors which contribute to the development of tooth decay are microbiological changes in bacterial flora, saliva composition and its pH buffering capacity, the type of sugary foods consumed and the frequency of their consumption, and the quality and regularity of oral hygiene.
Expert studies have shown that the antibacterial properties of stevia extract, a natural non-caloric sweeter extracted from the leaves of the Stevia rebaudiana plant, may help with gingivitis, cavities, tooth decay and mouth sores. According to the Global Stevia Institute (GSI), stevia extract may inhibit the reproduction and growth of oral bacteria, which can prevent mouth and gum diseases.
The GSI says that stevia extract may suppress the development and reproduction of infectious organisms in the gums and teeth, inhibit the growth of plaque and may improve overall oral health.
Several experts say that simply gargling with stevia mouthwash or brushing your teeth with stevia extract added to toothpaste may be beneficial. Stevia extract mouthwash can be made by adding 3-4 drops of stevia extract in half a cup of lukewarm water. You can also add 2 drops of stevia extract to your regular toothpaste. According to the GSI, people who have used steviaextract as a mouthwash have reported significant decrease in gingivitis and other mouth infections.
- García Almeida, J.M. Gracia M.ª Casado Fdez. and J. García Alemán: A current and global review of sweeteners; regulatory aspects. Nutrición Hospitalaria, 2013.
SVETIA® Calorie – Free Sweetener is made with cane sugar and stevia extract. One packet of SVETIA® contains only one gram of carbohydrates. People with diabetes are advised to check with their registered dietitian or physician.