Despite the fact that drinking sugary fizzy drinks gets bad publicity if consumed in excess, it doesn’t seem to have much effect on the amount of fizzy drinks that children still consume.
Too many fizzy drinks and too little water
Health professionals state that children should be drinking at least 1.8 litres of water a day, but statistics reveal that the areal average amounts are far less, at only half a litre daily. The rest of a child’s liquid requirements are coming from fizzy drinks. The facts are even worse for the youngest age group of 4 to 10 years, who are drinking just 276ml of water on a daily basis.
There are a number of far-reaching consequences of consuming so much sweetened drinks. Over the long term there is a serious chance of developing life-changing diabetes. It has been discovered that by eliminating just one fizzy drink and replacing it with water could substantially reduce this risk.
The public health facts concerning what constitutes liquid suggest that fizzy drinks shouldn’t be counted as part of your daily water requirements. This is because the sugar amounts in the drinks are hypertonic, which means that the dissolved substances in the drink make it more concentrated than your body fluids. Liquids that do count towards the recommended liquid daily amounts include water (the best), low-fat milk, tea and coffee.
A glass of tap water is better than a can of fizzy drink
The consequences of consuming so much fizzy drink has left health professionals no choice but to recommend that tap water should be the key drink for children. It’s not just diabetes that’s a concern but a child’s oral health is affected too. Each 330 ml can of fizzy drink contains up to two teaspoons of sugar. If a fizzy drink is consumed at a lunch break and the child doesn’t brush his or her teeth until the evening it exposes the teeth to tooth erosion that over time wears the teeth away.
What happens to your teeth when you drink a fizzy drink?
When you consume a fizzy drink the sugar attaches itself to your teeth. Bacteria that are present in your mouth thrive off the sugar residue left behind by the drink. As it consumes it acid is produced which in turn eats away or erodes the enamel which is the strong outer layer of your teeth. This erosion makes teeth weak as they become thinner. As a result, this exposes the teeth to cavity formation which is the start of tooth decay. The consumption of fizzy drinks is the commonest cause of tooth decay.
Sugar free fizzy drinks can damage your teeth
Diet fizzy drinks, citrus fruit drinks like orange, grapefruit and mandarin, which are 100% fruit juice can be surprisingly damaging to your teeth. Even though these drinks may be either sugar-free or contain minimal amounts of sugar, certainly far less than standard fizzy drinks, they can still damage your teeth. Diet fizzy drinks contain tartaric acid, phosphoric acid and citric acid which erode away the teeth’s enamel. Studies comparing erosion of teeth caused by diet and non-diet fizzy drinks have revealed there is little difference in the wearing down of teeth.
If your child is the 1 in 5 who drinks 10 or more fizzy drinks every week you should ensure that he or she regularly attends dental check-ups to help to identify and treat teeth erosion before it is too late.
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