The festive holidays are upon us! Regardless of the state of the economy, people will consume more food and drinks at this time of year. Enjoy yourselves by all means but try to remain healthy by keeping in mind some feasting facts while you celebrate.
Foods with added sugar reduces good cholesterol levels, increases blood fats and adds to the risk of heart disease. Carbonated drinks, sweetened beverages and sports drinks are the main source of sugar. Cakes, candies, cookies, sweetened cereals and dairy products like flavoured yogurt are other major sources of sugar. Sugar makes our food taste better, but it also adds up the calories and does not provide any nutrition. Sugar causes tooth decay, gingivitis, and bad breath if left in the mouth. Drinking alcohol causes dehydration and depletes our body of minerals, vitamins and antioxidants. It contains relatively high amounts of calories and certainly not recommended for obese or weight conscious people. Alcohol also cause bad breath and dry mouth. Excessive drinking can cause decreased immune responses. This can directly affect the gums and teeth and the rest of your body, as well. People tend to eat unhealthy finger foods when they drink alcohol at the same time, especially beer.
Alcoholic drinks can burn the stomach lining when consumed in large amount within a short time. This may damage the liver as it has to break down the alcohol and produce toxic substances in the process. Women are more susceptible to alcohol-related diseases due to their smaller body size and liver volume.
If you have to drink, choose wine instead of beer as it aids digestion and is good for the heart. Fruit juices are also good alternatives. You might already know that consuming spicy food can cause bad breath. Spicy food usually include ingredients like garlic, onions and pepper which can cause long term oral disorders such as bad breath. Although these ingredients contain important nutrients and vitamins, it is better to choose non spicy recipes than the usual spicy cuisines. Eat more fruits and vegetarian dishes as they are good choices and healthier for your teeth and gums.
Manage your stress. Take some time out to meditate, attend a yoga class, or just curl up with a good book or music CD. Anything that makes you feel relaxed and eases your mind will be helpful in reducing your stress. Your oral hygiene routine is important during the festive holidays when you tend to drink and eat excessively. If possible, brush and floss your teeth after every meal, or at least rinse your mouth with water. Be mindful that all the eating and drinking during the festive holidays may affect your teeth, gums, breath, and your overall health.