Summer Tip: Beware of Energy and Sports Drinks
Thanks to summer’s heat, energy and sports drinks like to rev up their flashy ad campaigns. They bill themselves as quick, easy ways to stay up longer, feel more energetic, or replenish after exercise. But these drinks pose several risks to the health of your body and your teeth. In this post, we’ll talk about these risks so you’ll be better informed when you’re considering the purchase of these products.
These Drinks Are Big Business
Sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade generated more than $6.9 billion in U.S. sales last year (source). Energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster are growing even faster. Some studies predict they will generate $21 billion by 2017.
With all of this revenue, their ad campaigns are visible and effective. According to one government report, between 30% and 50% of U.S. children have consumed energy drinks before.
The Dental Problem
The acid in these drinks erodes the teeth from the first sip until 45 minutes after the last sip, when the saliva returns the mouth to its normal ph balance. In a recent USA Today interview, Warren Brill, president of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentists, said:
“[These drinks] are dental poison, so to speak, because they just contain so much sugar.”
Dentists have known for years that Gatorade and other sports drinks cause cavities. In 2006, researchers published evidence that Gatorade erodes teeth faster than Coke.
Energy drinks pose additional problems. Users who consume two or three of these beverages could be taking in 120 mg to 180 mg of sugar, which is 4 to 6 times the maximum recommended daily intake. Plus, the elevated caffeine contained in the beverage could have addictive affects.
The Healthier Solutions
Many people turn to these drinks as a way to replenish energy after exercise. And with the Florida’s summer heat in full swing, you may find yourself being tempted to drink one as well.
We want you to resist these temptations as much as possible. Water provides all the nutrients lost after vigorous activity with the added benefit of fluoride. Drinking it to replenish after exercise will do your whole body an enormous favor.
Others consume these beverages because it helps them stay awake. However, a healthy sleep pattern will do more than heavily sugared and caffeinated beverages can hope to do.
To Learn More
We take nutrition counseling seriously. Our office knows what foods and drinks promote good oral health, and which ones are best to resist. Contact our office if you have any questions about your nutrition or a food’s affect on your teeth.