You’ve probably seen a lot about the sugar free movement over the past few years, especially if you’ve read any of the other articles on this website! It seems to be all the rage now, which we’re 100% delighted with. If you’re still not entirely certain quite why your little ones should be reducing their sugar intake, or if you need a handy list of responses to that ‘how could you possibly tell your kids they can’t have lollies?’ question, read on…
- Kids are already eating way too much sugar.
The recommended daily sugar intake for children is about 6 teaspoons, or 10% of their total daily energy intake. A 2016 study found that three-quarters of Australian children and teenagers exceed these guidelines. The study also found that the source of this added sugar is food that should be eaten as treats – and the biggest culprit is soft drinks and other sugar-sweetened beverages.
- Sugar is truly terrible for little teeth.
Eating and drinking sugary foods regularly causes tooth decay, which is a serious problem here in Australia. It’s a mostly preventable condition, but it’s the most common disease in children aged 6-19 in Australia and America. Bacteria in our mouths convert sugar into acid, which eats away at the enamel on our teeth over time. In serious cases, children as young as 5 are having teeth removed because they’re so badly decayed!
- Sugar causes disease.
Regular sugar consumption is far for everybody’s health, but particularly for children. 1 in 5 Australian children are overweight or obese, and this number is predicted to keep rising. Obesity can lead to a whole range of health issues, including type 2 diabetes. Obesity in childhood makes it more difficult to lose weight in adulthood, so starting good habits early will set your kids up for health throughout their life.
- They don’t have to COMPLETELY give up sugar…
An occasional piece of cake at a party won’t derail all your good work, or mean your kids have the worst parents in the world. As long as what they’re eating at home is healthy, whole foods that are low in sugar (and other nasties as well!), it is completely fine for your kids to have the occasional treat. For a yummy snack that they can have all the time, try Fangks chocolate and strawberry milk mixes.