The holiday season is quickly approaching and the time for delicious treats, candy, pies, and cakes of all kinds is almost here. With all the tasty food in your near future, you may begin to worry about the amount of sugar you and your family will be consuming this holiday season. No need to worry, we’re here to help you improve your oral and whole-body health with some healthy cooking tips.
While you know that excess sugar can be devastating to your overall health, you may not think about the havoc it can wreak on your teeth. The fact is, too much sugar consumed on a regular basis can lead to tooth decay and eventually tooth loss. Our goal isn’t to scare or encourage you to completely avoid sugary foods this holiday season. Our goal is to make you aware of a few healthy cooking tips you can consider to help curb your sweet tooth while still enjoying all the delicious foods and treats the holiday season has to brings.
Healthy Cooking Tips for Your Sweet Tooth
You might be surprised to know that nearly all of your favorite recipes can turn out just as tasy as you’re used to, but with significantly less sugar. In fact, your family and friends may not even notice the change. We have a few healthy cooking tips, ideas, and resources below to help you get started.
Consider Using Natural Alternative Sweeteners
We aren’t referring to artificial sugar products here. We want to focus on healthier alternatives, not increase the use of chemical-laden artificial sugar products.
Instead of regular sugar, consider swapping out white sugar for natural, healthier options such as maple syrup, raw honey, or even agave nectar. Most of the time these natural alternatives are much sweeter than sugar so you actually need to use less in your recipes. The added bonus is that they also have a number of nutritional benefits. However, don’t take this as a green light to go crazy with the alternative sweeteners.
If you’re not sure where to get started with natural sugar alternatives, refer to this list of 30 Sugar Substitutes for some great alternative ideas and to learn more about the added health benefits of these substitutes!
Find Healthier Cooking Recipes To Implement Year-Round
If you’re just getting started, we recommend you start this transition to healthier cooking options by finding some new recipes to try. This will make the sugar transition easier because you won’t be comparing the new recipe to the traditional sugary recipes you love. If this is the case, try searching online for a similar recipe that calls for less sugar.
Thanks to more and more people realizing the dangers associated with consuming too much sugar, there are thousands of online blogs and resources focused on healthier recipes. Use these online resources to find specific recipes and alternatives to improve your cooking, while also improving your overall health.
When searching for new recipes, try using search terms like this: “Healthy [Recipe]” or “[Recipe] Less Sugar”. Here are a few examples:
- Search “Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies” or “Chocolate Chip Cookies Less Sugar”
- Search “Healthy Apple Pie” or “Apple Pie Less Sugar”
- Search “Healthy Blueberry Muffins” or “Blueberry Muffins Less Sugar”
Take the Time to Test Your New Recipes
Replacing traditional sugar with a natural alternative will likely impact the final taste and consistency of your recipes. Be aware of that and in some cases you may need to have a few “trial and error” batches until you find the right amount of alternative sweetener to use. To get started, try cooking smaller batches and testing a variety of alternatives. This will help you perfect your healthier recipes in a shorter amount of time and with less waste.
If you love baking and are considering the change to natural sugar alternatives, be sure to read this Guide to Baking with Sugar Alternatives.
When using these healthy cooking tips to satisfy your sweet tooth, you will quickly discover that you can maintain the great flavor of your favorite dishes, and try some tasty new dishes, without using the large amount of sugar you’ve grown accustomed to. While your family’s teeth are definitely going to thank you, their entire body’s will also benefit.
Keeping Your Teeth Healthy
Keep in mind, it isn’t enough just to reduce the sugar in your recipes to keep your family’s teeth healthy. If you want to ensure their teeth remain healthy and decay-free, you have to practice superior oral hygiene, as well. This includes brushing and flossing several times each day and visiting your local family dentist twice a year. If you and your family are in the Chicago Illinois area, and new to 1st Family Dental, use the coupon below to get a special offer you can use at any of our 10+ Chicagoland dental offices.