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Sugar in the workplace

8th September 2021

Now many of us are back at the office, you may have noticed yourself slipping back into old workplace habits. Having a piece of cake or biscuit that your colleague brought in or celebrating someone’s birthday with sugar laden treats may be fun and morale boosting, however, can have a detrimental effect on the oral health and general wellbeing if it’s all too often.

NHS guidelines say that adults should have no more than 30g of sugar a day, which is about seven level teaspoons. However, recent findings show that many adults consume double this amount daily! When you consider our eating and drinking habits at work, you can very quickly see how these can add up throughout the day. For example, having a can of Coke at lunchtime is more than the total daily amount, coming in at 40g of sugar.

Here are some tips to help you navigate and cut down your sugar intake at the office:

Be mindful of the vending machine habit

Replace sugary vending machine snacks with dentally friendly alternatives such as cheese, nuts, yogurt and veggie sticks, air popped popcorn, crackers with a dip.

Understand the different names for ‘sugar’

Sugar can come in many forms and these ingredients usually end in ‘ose’, for example, sucrose, fructose and glucose. Make sure to check the ingredients on packaging before purchasing food and drink for the workplace. Remember that ‘no added sugar’ does not necessarily mean that the product is sugar free, it simply means no extra sugar has been added.

Try to keep sugar consumption to mealtimes only

It might be tempting to accept every invite to ‘cake in the kitchen, anyone welcome’ email, however, try to consume sugar during mealtimes only so to subject your teeth to fewer ‘acid attacks’ throughout the day.

Plan ahead and bring in your own lunch and snacks from home 

If you’ve got healthy food and snack options from home, you’re less likely to hangry scoff 7 biscuits during an afternoon meeting.

Reducing you sugar intake at work could reduce tooth decay and dental erosion, as well as general health conditions such as diabetes and obesity. By also staying mindful of your eating habits at work, you’re providing your body with the best power food to help you concentrate and sustain your energy throughout the day, until ‘knock off’ time.

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