‘Think mouth’ and learn about the role of low calorie sweeteners in oral health

The International Sweeteners Association (ISA) supports World Oral Health Day (WOHD) on 20th March

Brussels, 20th March 2018: Committed to helping raise awareness on the importance of maintaining a healthy mouth and on the impact of oral diseases not only on the mouth but also on overall health, the International Sweeteners Association (ISA) supports FDI World Dental Federation this year again in celebrating World Oral Health Day, and in spreading the message that “It’s never too early or too late to start looking after your mouth; your body will thank you”.

Dental caries is a major public health challenge worldwide. Data shows that overall, oral diseases affect 3.9 billion people worldwide, with over 40% of the global population dealing with untreated decay of permanent teeth.1 Tooth decay is the outcome of the demineralisation of tooth enamel by acid in the mouth. Acid is produced by oral bacteria that metabolises sugars and other carbohydrates that we ingest with foods and drinks. Therefore, overconsumption of sugar has been associated with tooth decay.

Why are low calorie sweeteners tooth-friendly ingredients?

Unlike carbohydrates, low calorie sweeteners are not broken down by oral bacteria and thus are not cariogenic and do not cause tooth decay. Swapping sugar for low calorie sweeteners can help you enjoy sweet taste within a tooth-friendly diet. Used in place of sugar in foods and beverages, low calorie sweeteners have therefore an important role to play in oral health and in the prevention of oral diseases.2,3,4,5

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) also concluded in a scientific opinion in 2011 that: “Intense sweeteners maintain tooth mineralisation by decreasing tooth demineralisation if consumed instead of sugars”.6 This is an authorised health claim in the EU Register of nutrition and health claims.7

Think MOUTH and learn about low calorie sweeteners

Watch the ISA animated video developed in support of World Oral Health Day 2018 below, which you can also access directly by clicking here, and learn more about the importance of maintaining good oral health:

Download also the ISA infographic for World Oral Health Day 2018 to learn more about why and how to maintain oral health by clicking here.

You can download the ISA infographic in different languages below:

Prevention, early detection and treatment are key

Act now to reduce oral disease risk and associated health complications:

  1. Maintain good oral hygiene habits everyday, such as regular tooth brushing!
  2. Follow an overall healthy and lower in sugar diet! Low calorie sweeteners can fit in well with a tooth-friendly diet.
  3. Get rid of unhealthy lifestyle habits such as smoking and high alcohol consumption.
  4. Do not miss your regular dental check-up!

Please click here to read more about the benefits of using low calorie sweeteners in oral health. For more detailed information on the role of low calorie sweeteners in oral health you can also download our new dedicated factsheet on ‘Low calorie sweeteners and their beneficial role in oral health’.

Follow the ISA on Twitter and Facebook, and join the conversation around World Oral Health Day on social media by using the dedicated hashtags: #ISA4WOHD18#WOHD18#SayAhh.

  1. FDI World Dental Federation. The Challenge of Oral Disease – A call for global action. The Oral Health Atlas. 2nd ed. Geneva. 2015. Available online: https://www.fdiworlddental.org/sites/default/files/media/documents/complete_oh_atlas.pdf
  2. Gupta P, et al. Role of Sugar and Sugar Substitutes in Dental Caries: A Review. ISRN Dent. 2013:519421
  3. Roberts MW and Wright TJ. Nonnutritive, low caloric substitutes for food sugars: clinical implications for addressing the incidence of dental caries and overweight/obesity. Int J Dent. 2012: 625701
  4. Van Loveren C, et al. Functional foods/ingredients and dental caries. Eur J Nutr (2012) 51 (Suppl 2):S15–S25
  5. Gibson S et al. Consensus statement on benefits of low-calorie sweeteners. Nutrition Bulletin 2014;39(4):386-389
  6. EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA); Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to the sugar replacers. EFSA Journal 2011;9(4):2076. [25 pp.]. Available online: https://www.efsa.europa.eu/en/efsajournal/pub/2076
  7. Commission Regulation (EU) No 432/2012 of 16 May 2012 establishing a list of permitted health claims made on foods, other than those referring to the reduction of disease risk and to children’s development and health.