Consumption of low/no calorie sweeteners as an alternative to sugar can contribute to healthy food environments and good oral and dental health
Brussels, 20th March 2023: The ISA is proud to once again support World Oral Health Day, organised by the FDI World Dental Federation and celebrated each year on 20th March, in order to empower people with the knowledge, tools and confidence to secure good oral health.
This year’s World Oral Health Day theme is ‘Look after your oral health for a lifetime of smiles.’ The ISA is pleased to raise awareness on the importance of good oral health at every stage of life, reminding everyone that no matter what age you are, caring for your mouth and looking after your oral health is key for your well-being.
Act now for a lifetime of smiles
The status of global oral health requires urgent action, according to the 2022 WHO Global oral health status report. Oral diseases affect an estimated 3.5 billion people and are among the most common noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) worldwide.
The United Nations, through its broader framework of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), along with the World Health Organization (WHO) in its recent Global Strategy on Oral Health report have both acknowledged the importance of addressing oral health across individuals’ lifespans as part of the global commitment to prevent and control NCDs. The Global Strategy on Oral Health action plan calls for public health initiatives to reduce sugar consumption as part of fostering an oral health-friendly embodiment for people that includes a healthy food environment.
Low/no calorie sweeteners as part of healthy food environments
Luckily, oral diseases are largely preventable when people practice good oral hygiene habits and follow a healthy diet, both of which include a reduction in the intake of sugar. Low/no calorie sweeteners are used by food and drink manufacturers to reformulate products to contain less sugar while maintaining a sweet taste. Their consumption as compared to sugars can contribute to healthy diets and good oral and dental health.
Low/no calorie sweeteners are non-fermentable ingredients, which means they are not broken down by bacteria in the mouth. As a result, they do not contribute to dental caries or tooth decay and have been recognised by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) as helping teeth retain the minerals they need to give them hardness and strength.
The ISA has developed resources including infographics, factsheets and videos that inform on the importance of a balanced, low-sugar diet for a lifetime of smiles and the role that low/no calorie sweeteners can play in creating a healthy, tooth-friendly food environment. These resources help keep everyone across the world armed with the knowledge and tools needed to promote good oral hygiene habits.
Engage in the conversation around World Oral Health Day 2023 on social media by using the dedicated hashtags: #ISA4WOHD, #WOHD23 and #MouthProud.