Name: Guide On Sugars and Dental Caries
Location: , ,
“Sugars and Dental Caries – A practical guide to reduce sugars consumption and curb the epidemic of dental caries” is a new publication published recently by the FDI World Dental Federation.
The aim of the publication is to support the advocacy work of FDI member associations in establishing and implementing goals for policy change.
The publication provides an overview on the issue and addresses the global challenge of reducing sugar consumption. It helps member associations set short- and long-term objectives to achieve sustainable policies to reduce intake of free sugars.
Measures suggested include the promotion of education campaigns, increase taxes, restrict advertising and gather data.
The practical guide fully supports the recommendations made in the “Guideline: Sugars intake for adults and children” published by the World Health Organization (WHO). These state that sugar intake should make up less than 10% of total energy intake per day – and less than 5% (roughly 25 grams or 6 teaspoons) for additional health benefits.
The WHO guideline was also a key subject of debate during the recent World Oral Health Forum (WOHF) at FDI’s World Dental Congress. “Proceedings of the WOHF 2015 – New WHO Guideline on sugars intake for adults and children” have been released, featuring top-level panelists from the fields of nutrition and oral health.
Taxing sugary drinks
The timing of FDI’s publications on sugar – the practical guide and the proceedings – is crucial given the global attention sugar has received over the last two years. In October 2016, WHO released a report backing the taxing of sugary drinks by 20% or more to result in lower sugar consumption and improved nutrition.
The industry’s response was rapid and predicable: First, soda taxes do not work, despite evidence to the contrary. Second, soda taxes are regressive as they punish the poor.
“This argument brushes aside the fact that it is precisely the poor who suffer most greatly from diet-related diseases. Soda is liquid candy that meets no nutritional needs,” said WHO Director-General Margaret Chan in a recent keynote address at the 9th Global Conference on Health Promotion. “If fiscal policies reduce soda consumption among the poor, this is a huge and most desirable victory for health.”