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Why scientists are urging us to cut out the sweet stuff

September 16th 2014 / Emma Jones

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After studying the cost of tooth decay, health experts say our target sugar intake should be much lower than publicised

If you struggle to make it through the morning without two sugars in your tea, then you might want to stop for a minute and think about what it might be doing to your teeth. The most important factor in the development of tooth decay, a new study has found that when children raise their intake of sugar from near-zero to just five per cent, tooth decay doubles.

Describing it as a "largely preventable disease", the researchers suggested that just three per cent of our energy intake should come from sugar - a marked difference to the old advice of 10 per cent and even less than the more recently published guidelines of five per cent. Co-author of the report, Prof Philip James, said tough action was needed and even called for vending machines offering sugary snacks to be removed from schools and hospitals.

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