how to talk to kids about harm of excessive sugar in foods in Lincoln NE

How to talk to kids about harms of excessive sugar in foods.

Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE:

Our annual Candy Buy Back is back for the seventh year in a row.

We all know that eating sugar isn’t always the greatest idea and for many reasons. Here we’ll explain what we think you should know when it comes to sugar. Our article covers:

-What can you do with leftover candy? Participate in Nebraska Family Dentistry’s candy buy back program!

-Why is sugar a health concern? We’ll explain sugar and it’s connection to overall health.

-Is all sugar bad? How to talk to kids about sugar.

-What are the worst foods to eat? Here we offer an explanation of “all food is fuel” concept.

-Why should you not eat sugar? Top 100 reasons sugar is bad.

“Kids love candy, but eating a lot of sugar causes dental problems as well as health concerns,” says Dr. Kathryn Alderman. “We are doing a Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE program at all of our locations to help give kids the opportunity to get rid of their extra Halloween candy and earn some money. Kids can still enjoy trick-or-treating while earning some extra money for their piggy-bank at our Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE.” 

For the seventh consecutive year, all locations of Nebraska Family Dentistry will be hosting an annual candy buy back in Lincoln, NE. Kids can bring their extra Halloween candy to any of our locations and earn $0.50 per lb. 

candy buy back

Nebraska Family Dentistry

Locations Participating in The Halloween Candy Buy Back Program in Lincoln, NE:

Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE (East Lincoln Dental Office)
Preserve Family Dentistry

Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE (Southwest Lincoln Dental Office)
Southpointe Dental

Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE (North Lincoln Dental Office)
Northstar Dental

Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE (Central Lincoln Dental Office)
Lincoln Family Dentistry

Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE (South Lincoln Dental Office)
South Lincoln Family Dentistry

Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE (Northeast Lincoln Dental Office)
Northeast Lincoln Family Dentistry

Halloween Candy Buy Back in Lincoln, NE  (West Lincoln Dental Office)
Coddington Dental

If you are searching for “candy buy-back dental office near me,” Search no further. Nebraska Family Dentistry has locations throughout Lincoln, NE and all are participating in the candy buy-back program for 2022. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Image of Dr. Sydney Joyce with the candy brought in from the candy buy back Lincoln, NE.

Why Do We Have a Candy Buy-Back Event Every Year?

Dental decay is the most common childhood disease in the U.S. We know that the health of the mouth can tell us a lot about a person’s overall wellness. Kids who have a higher incidence of cavities are at a higher risk of childhood obesity, diabetes and heart disease. Dental problems cause kids to miss 51 million hours at school. For their parents,  this means 25 million hours of missed work each year. At Nebraska Family Dentistry, we care about the well-being of kids. We want to help kids improve their overall wellness by helping them improve their dental health.

Every year, our dentists and their teams do a Halloween candy buy back Lincoln, NE program to help bring awareness to the community about health risks of diets high in processed sugars.

Graph of the best Halloween candy ranked by sugar level for Halloween candy buy back in Lincoln, NE

Sugar and the Overall Health Connection

Inflammation is our body’s natural response to stress, infection or bacteria and protects us from getting sick. Unfortunately, when a person’s inflammatory response remains activated, over time this causes chronic health problems.

A high level of sugar intake can increase inflammation in the body. Inflammation from sugar can cause many health problems for children. Health problems like asthma, eczema, behavioral problems, diabetes, and weight gain can be linked to the over-consumption of sugar.

Eating excess sugar can lead to cavities as well by feeding the bacteria that are normally present in the mouth. This creates an acidic environment in the mouth that leads to the breakdown of tooth structure.

Unfortunately, many “health” foods that are labeled organic or all-natural often contain added sugars like dextrose and rice syrup. When kids reach for sugary foods, they are less likely to be hungry for wholesome, nutrient-dense foods. Often times they are then unable to meet basic daily vitamin and mineral requirements.

Many parents ask us to explain the risks of eating too much sugar to their kids. By answering those common questions, you can discuss the risks of eating too much sugar for overall health with your kids. Giving kids a solution like a candy buy-back in Lincoln, NE helps them be a part of the decision to reduce their sugar intake.

Sweet Ways to Survive Halloween Candy from Dr. Kathryn Alderman
Image of a mother and daughter discussing the candy buy back in Lincoln, NE.

How can we talk to kids about sugar?

The first question is, “what is sugar?”There are several forms of sugar that can be added to foods and do not occur naturally in our foods. White table sugar, honey, maple syrup and brown sugar are all processed sugars that are added to other foods to sweeten them. Some other sugars that are found in our foods are lactose, which is in milk, fructose which is from fruit, and starches from bread and pasta. Lactose, fructose and starches are naturally occurring within the food and not added later. These naturally occurring sugars are better fuel for our bodies. This is because they are combined with fiber and nutrients that our body can use efficiently for fuel. The processed forms of sugar are not used the same way by the body.

Image of a healthy food pyramid.

In our ten reasons why sugar is bad for us, we explain how our body tries to use processed sugar and why this type of fuel is not ideal to help us grow strong and healthy.

It is important to explain: “All Food is Fuel” concept

Kids should know how important it is for us to fuel our bodies with good nutrition. It can be helpful to use the analogy of our bodies being like a car. If we do not put the right kind of fuel into our car, it will not be able to drive. The same is true of our bodies. By giving our bodies wholesome nutrition like rice, nuts, seeds, beans, pasta, healthy fats and lean proteins, they will be able to grow strong, stay healthy and feel good. Cookies or candy are okay sometimes. We should however try to only eat them after we have given ourselves good, whole foods that we eat every day.

It is good for kids to understand that not all sugar is bad for them. Be sure they are aware of how much and how often they eat foods with added sugars. It is possible for kids to be healthy and occasionally have a sweet treat, after they have given their body the good food it needs to thrive. Kids should know it is okay for them to enjoy some of their Halloween candy, but if they have a lot left over, it’s great to do a Halloween candy buy back in Lincoln, NE to reduce the amount they eat.

Learn about healthy school lunch ideas.

Image of sugar cubes.

How Much Sugar Is Too Much?

So how much-added sugar can a child eat in a day to avoid health problems? The World Health Organization recommends that no more than 10 percent of our daily intake of food come from added sugars, although less than 10% is a better target for most of us.

For example, for a moderately active 55 lb five-year-old child, that is around 6-12 tsp of added sugar a day. It is easy to exceed the daily recommended limit of sugar with a few common foods kids eat.

Image of a container of oatmeal, which may contain hidden sugar.

A Quaker Maple and Brown Sugar Instant Oatmeal Packet contains 29 grams of sugar, which is equal to about 7.25 tsp of sugar. At the first meal of the day, a child could meet or exceed their daily recommendation of added sugar. If they add an 8 oz glass of Tropicana orange juice, this is another 22 grams or 5 ½ tsp of sugar. Fruit juices are tricky because although they come from fruit, they often contain added sugars. Additionally, fruit juice has been extracted from the whole fruit, leaving the end product devoid of fiber. It is critical to consume fruit sugar in the whole fruit form to avoid the same insulin spike that is caused by consuming refined sugars.

Kids should know that juice and packaged foods usually have sweeteners in them that can easily add up to a large serving of sugar. Talk to your child about making better choices like an apple with peanut butter or regular oatmeal sweetened with fruit and cinnamon. By helping kids to get rid of excess candy by doing a candy buy back in Lincoln, NE they will be less tempted to make unhealthy choices.

Learn about the great foods to pack when making school lunches

Image of a sick child and the importance of participating in the Halloween candy buy back in Lincoln, NE.

Can Eating Too Much Sugar Make Me Sick?

Ask your kids how they feel after they’ve eaten lots of sugary treats at a birthday party. How do they feel an hour later? It is a good idea to talk to your kids about whether this made them feel positive and cheerful or tired, grouchy and lethargic. Kids should understand the link these feelings have to the food they have eaten so they recognize how over-consuming sugar affects them. If you as a parent have health problems, it is a good idea to talk to your kids about what overeating sugar has done to your own health in the past or present. For example, does eating too much sugar make you feel lethargic and unable to exercise and stay active? Does it affect your mood?

Image of a lady measuring her waist line.

Can Eating Sugar Make Me Fat?

Handle this subject with care when speaking to kids. It is a good idea to explain this in a way that demonstrates how eating too much food with a high sugar content can cause them to be less healthy. This can make it difficult for them to enjoy activities like playing at the park, running, or climbing. It is always good to avoid discussing the concept of being “fat” with young children, because this can cause negative perceptions of themselves and others. Discuss the subject of body image in terms of being strong and fit, being able to play and enjoy life. Avoid creating the concept of “bad” foods versus “good” or “safe” foods.

Food is food, and is not inherently good or evil. It is helpful to discuss foods in terms of what is quality fuel for our body that makes us strong and what type of fuel is not.

Kids can feel like they are taking some initiative on their own health by doing a dental candy buy back in Lincoln, NE. Here they choose to trade candy for cash, reducing the amount of sugar they consume and earning extra money.

10 reasons sugar is bad image.

Top 10 Reasons Sugar is Bad

  1. It causes our bodies to become inflamed.
    Whenever we get sick from a cold, or get hurt on the playground, our body sends fighter cells in our blood to help us get better. This is a process called inflammation. It is one of the ways our body protects itself and keeps itself healthy. With lots of good food and vitamins, our body is able to fight off germs and help heal us faster. When we fuel our body with lots of sugar, it helps the germs grow and makes our body have to work even harder to fight them off. We stay sick longer when we eat too much sugar.

  2. Sugar makes it hard for us to keep our bodies at a healthy weight.
    Whenever we eat healthy foods, our brain tells us we are full after we eat enough food to fuel it. When we eat sugar, it stops our brain from telling us we are full, so we still feel hungry even though we already ate a lot of food with sugar. This makes it easy for our body to store the extra sugar that we have eaten on our body to use later, causing us to gain weight.

  3. There are no vitamins or minerals in sugar.
    The kind of sugar that comes from fruit (fructose) is not bad for us because the fruit has lots of vitamins and minerals and fiber which are all healthy fuels for our bodies and help us grow and stay healthy. When we eat added sugars, they have no vitamins or minerals that can help us in any way. Our body isn’t able to use added sugars to fuel us to play and grow and fight off germs. Instead, it stores the sugar in our body rather than using it to give us lots of energy like healthy foods.

  4. Sugar is addictive.
    Just like taking drugs, sugar makes our brain feel happy right after we eat it, and also gives us an instant “sugar high.” We think the sugar has given us energy, but this energy doesn’t last long. The good feeling our brain gets from eating sugar makes us addicted to the sugar.  This leaves us wanting to eat more and more of it.

  5. It causes cavities.
    Sugar feeds the bacteria that live in our mouths. The bacteria make our mouth a very acidic place. Thus, creating a perfect place and soft spots for the bacteria to get inside the tooth and make a cavity.

  6. Too much sugar can cause liver disease.
    Just like when people drink too much alcohol it causes liver damage, eating too much sugar overloads the liver. When the liver can’t process the sugar, it causes the liver to turn the sugar into fat. The liver becomes fatty just like how a person who drinks too much alcohol gets liver disease. When this happens, it makes us very sick.
  7. Sugar feeds cancer.
    Sugar can actually help cancer cells to grow. Cancer cells that are already in our body but not harmful to us begin to grow and spread very quickly if we eat too much sugar.

  8. Sugar causes our brains to age faster.
    Having high levels of sugar in our blood has been linked to premature aging of the brain.
  9. Sugar causes cravings.
    Whenever we eat sugar, our insulin levels spike, and our body tries to balance the insulin level. The liver stores the sugar as fat when insulin is released. This process lowers your blood sugar quickly, making you feel hungry for more sugar. So you eat again, and stay stuck in this vicious cycle of sugar cravings.

  10. Sugar affects your mood. Eating too much sugar can make kids feel cranky and is linked to ADHD, anxiety, headaches and behavioral problems.

It can be very difficult to avoid sugar completely, so the key is moderation. The less we eat it, the more we will enjoy it when we do. With Halloween just around the corner, remember to save a few pieces back that you can have a “treat.” As for the rest, let us help you put money in the bank! Participate in our program called Halloween candy buy back in Lincoln, NE.

The information on this page was written by Dr. Kathryn Alderman.

This gentle Lincoln, NE dentists says: “I am aware that dental phobia is a serious condition that affects a significant portion of the population. Many people are so fearful or anxious about visiting the dentist that they let their oral health suffer as a result. Many anxious patients often have problems with their teeth, with infection, and chronic gum disease as a result of not seeing a dentist on a regular schedule. I am sensitive to patients with dental fears and love to help those patients overcome their fears.

You can schedule with this Lincoln, NE dentist, or her partners, online 24/7 at a Nebraska Family Dentistry Location near you. This “dentist near me” serves the local communities close to Lincoln. Some of the communities include Waverly, Davey, Raymond, Garland, Ceresco, Greenwood, and Malcom, Roca, Bennet, Firth, Crete, Hickman, and many more!

Nebraska Family Dentistry has multiple Lincoln Dental Clinics!
Choose a “dentist near me” location convenient for you.