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Wed May  4 23:38:05 CEST 2005

Sugar...

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When I went to get Gentan from dagis and entered the building with
Ayumi, I was hit with a cacophony of childrens laughter mixed with
yells and screams. Ok, its normally quite noisy there, but this was
different. As I stepped into the main playing room, Im faced with the
fourteen kids racing around the room as if they were on speed. The
dagis-fröken sat on the plastic slide, looking resigned.

Im like wtf, and looked askingly at the teacher, and she answers that
the kids were fed with aprikoskräm (like apricot soup, but
thicker) for their afternoon snack and their sugar level was maxed
out.

Anna and I've talked alot about our kids sugar intake. Well, mostly
Gentans intake, since Ayumi is still tiny. Our basic philosophy is- keep the
sugar level down. Sugar is bad for his teeth; it normally generates a
short burst of frenetic energy followed by a crash filled with tears
and wails; its fattening (well we're not worried about his weight or
anything, but too much bad food will result in bad health). 

There's been alot of talk lately, both among our friends and in the
newspapers (article from dn.se, sorry only in Swedish) about childrens sugar
intake, and Stockholms municipality 
(which manages our dagis) has decided upon some sort of policy
regarding lunches and snacks at dagis. It sounds great, but when I
asked the dagis-fröken about this policy, she answered that she's
really trying to influence her superiors, but that they just aren't
responsive. She managed to get chocolate milk off the menu, but thats
about it.

I was wondering the other day whether I was overreacting. After all,
didn't I eat lots of sweets when I was a kid in Tokyo? I had
these kinds of thoughts for some time, but what changed my opinion was
that there's this child at Gentans dagis who's father insisted on giving the
kid (2 and a half years old) juice in a nursing bottle regularly. Today,
the poor boy's upper incisors are not pearly white, but when he opens
his mouth he's got four blackish-brown stumps. Heres a link describing
what the child has (with photos *shiver*): www.dentalgentlecare.com.

Though Gentans friend has a special caries problem called Baby Bottle
Syndrome/Decay, exposure to sweet drinks, candy and
sugar (in yoghurt etc) feels... unnecessary. After all, eventually he
will discover it anyway, why hurry the process?

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