Sugar & Featured

I drove to my dentist’s office Thursday afternoon

For a routine cleaning


I get my teeth cleaned every 4 months because I just like the way my teeth look and the way my mouth feels when I am super on top of my cleanings.

I was just there and posted about it April 7

I don’t have dental insurance and pay out of pocket 100% for all my dental care but it’s well worth it to me.

I may be a little OCD about my teeth and preventative maintenance but I’ve never had a cavity.  And I’d rather be proactive than reactive.

Plus when you go more frequently and don’t let things build up <–pun intended, when you are there and in the chair, the cleanings go really fast since you don’t have months or years worth of gunk built up.

I was in and out in about 40 minutes.

With a goodie bag, too.

Free samples always make me happy.

When I came home from the dentist, I realized that Spry Living Featured my Raw Vegan Chocolate Cookie Dough Balls

As part of their 6 Yummy Afternoon Snacks Feature

Here’s the recipe for my Cookie Dough Balls

Thanks, Spry Living for featuring me!

And I also realized that Foodgawker accepted these:

  • my foodgawker gallery

My Snickers Bar Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

So clearly it’s possible to eat sugar and not be destined for cavities.  Shhh, don’t tell my dentist.

From my last post, Beauty Then & Now, I loved reading about who you thought was beautiful and who you idolized growing up.  I Dream Of Jeanie and the Brady Girls were mentioned quite a bit.

And hearing about the shows you watched growing up was a little trip down memory lane for me, too, since I watched many of the same ones.   Saved By the Bell or the Price is Right anyone?

The winner of the Say NO to Auto Giveaway is:

katie @ KatieDid August 16, 2011 at 5:21 am

I love talking photography… I shoot with a DSLR and almost entirely in manuel. I finally committed to myself this summer to not take it off manuel, and all those numbers and letters finally made sense after just doing it! My biggest struggle right now is trying to find “my style”. I look at blog after blog with beautiful photos, all of them SO different and I love them all… sometimes I try to make my photos more like so- and so’s or someone elses but I’m trying to settle in to my own style more. Ahhh I just love all the endless possibilities with photography and how its challenged me and allowed me to be creative.

Congrats, Katie!


1. How good are you about going to the dentist?  Or preventative checkups and health maintenance, in general?  Ob/Gyno well-woman visits anyone?

I am all over the dental stuff and yes, I go annually for my well-woman checkups.   Some people say you can stretch those checkups out to every three years if you meet certain criteria but I just feel better when I go annually for those and every 4 months for my teeth.

I find that if I wait til every 6 months for my teeth, it’s just a wee bit longer than ideal.

2. Do you think there’s a correlation between sugar consumption and cavities?  Are you prone to cavities?

I am sure there are 987898 articles online about this, both pros and cons.

I have also read that some people’s mouths are more alkaline and some people’s are more acidic.  And one type of mouth is more prone to buildup, tartar, and plaque (that’s me) and others are more prone to cavities.

I brush 3 times a day with my electric toothbrush, I floss twice a day, I drink lots of water, I am all over the preventative dental trips, but I also eat sugar.  (See this post for my views on Desserts, Sugar, & Everything in Moderation)

I don’t know if I am doing things right or am a bit lucky when it comes to my teeth.  Or possibly both.

3. Weekend plans?

I am off to do something fun this afternoon.  More on that later!  TGIF!


  1. Thanks for your words of support. I do keep odd hours and don’t get anywhere near the amount of sleep needed. That being said, once again you knock my socks off with your gorgeous photos! Congrats on Spry Living! You so deserve it!

  2. we got to capital city of summer here to visit our relatives :D

  3. After having to wear a brace to straightn out my teeth I’m super up on looking after them. :)

  4. I dreamed about making your Snickers Bar Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies last night. I think it’s a sign.

  5. Okay- those cookies are amazing. Congrats on getting them in Foodgawker. :) I go in every 6 months for dental check ups. I’m not a fan of the dentist or those darn picky things they use, but my dentist is a sight for sore eyes so it makes it all good. ha ha!

  6. Get ready to be angry at me, Averie– I JUST went to the dentist on Wednesday for the first time in a WHOLE YEAR :( I know, I know

    The good news is that I don’t have any cavities :D

  7. Congrats on your cookie dough ball feature and the foodgawker acceptance! I’ve been making your dough balls like crazy. Love them ;)

    I don’t like going to the doctor’s or dentist’s…but I go. Yes, I think there is a correlation between sugar and cavities…but only if you don’t take care of your teeth! Brush them and take care of them like we do and I don’t think you’re necessarily destined for dental problems! And yes, I’ve heard of some people being more prone to cavities/dental problems than others…so maybe that has more to do with it than anything?

    Happy Friday!

  8. I’m all about the dentist every 4 to 5 months. I love that clean feeling! I would say the same thing about the sugar/teeth relationship. For people with the tendency toward cavities…sugar probably makes it worse (along with other acidic stuff)…but for someone who doesn’t have the tendency, it may not be a problem.
    I pay out of pocket for most maintenance things…and it’s worth it!
    This weekend I’m finally moving. I can’t wait till it’s done! Unfortunately, Joe wants to move himself (no movers), so I’m the one packing and transporting all the small stuff from now till Sunday. At least it’s a good workout :)
    Going on a bike ride today and celebrating Wine Friday…that’s about it here!

  9. I go to the dentist every 6 months because that’s what my insurance pays for!

  10. I love your pictures, you have such great talent. Also, I make some version of you ball recipe each week. Thank you for those. I am buying a Vitamix soon and wanted to keep costs minimal since the machine is so pricey. Do I need the 32 oz canister specifically made for grinding grains for my ball and raw dessert recipes or will the standard 5200 Vitamix do it? Which do you use?

  11. Hey, Averie! I am a college student and I just wanted to let you know I am obsessed with your vegan cookie dough balls (literally, I’ve had them for dessert every night this week, it’s fine)! So easy to make and delicious! :)

  12. I love going to my dentist and after years of braces I owe it to my parents to keep things looking good. I noticed your early post on doc appointments- and how often to go to your obgyn. I would just like to add a little note on “family history” and maybe even “risk factors”. If you look up the stats on woman diagnosised with a cancer who had the risk factors you might be surprised to find out the biggest percent have 0 risks/family history. I was shocked to see that. I have no history or risk factors and I even breast fed my baby boy and I got breast cancer at 40. My obgyn saved my life doing a breast exam. I skipped one year and when I went in he found my tumor. Early detection is SO important- if I would have went in earlier maybe my cancer would have not gotten to my lymph nodes and I would have had the option to maybe skip chemo. Breast cancer in all honestly is not that bad, BUT catching it early is the key. I’m doing great, but I feel the need to spread the word about early detection- no one ever told me how very important it is and that it could save you from chemo and maybe even radiation. Losing my breast was hard, but chemo and radiation take a toll on your body.
    So if you are willing to do your teeth 2x a year -REALLY consider a yearly pap. Self exam is also key…..except my tumor was under my nipple.
    I have to say also – I LOVE your blog. Your recipes are wonderful and I love that you love yoga.
    oh and I’m doing great…..vita mixer and pilates are 2 of my best friends so that explains my love of this blog.

  13. 1.) Yes, when it comes to dentists, others not so much. I love having clean teeth and I have never feared going to the dentist.
    2.) No, I really don´t think so. My mum for example eats hardly any sugar, always brushes and flosses her teeth, etc. and still, she doesn´t have the best teeth. Some people have “good” teeth naturally, others don´t, but sugar has not an impact I think (well, of course it does, if you never brush your teeth ;)).
    3.) Going to a burlesqe party with a friend tonight, bbq tmro, spinning class on sunday :)
    Have a great weekend, Averie!

  14. I haven’t gone to the dentist in YEARS. Last time I went it had been 4 years and they were expecting it to take 2 visits. They were done in less than the time it normally takes, because I am SO OCD about brushing and flossing. I brush 3x with an electric brush, floss 1-2x daily, and drink lots of water. I also drink tons of coffee and my mom just told me last weekend it looks like I have had my teeth whitened (I didn’t), so that whole coffee staining teeth thing is all lies.

    I also haven’t had a cavity in forever and made an appointment to go to the dentist in Sept when I get insurance again.

  15. Honestly I have not been to the dentist in a while. I do brush 2x and floss a few times a week — I try to be a daily flosser but if I’m being honest it just doesn’t always happen. I don’t really agree with the sugar/cavities thing only because my youngest sister and I probably eat the same types of foods and I have had 1 cavity in my life and she has had 25+ (and she’s 7 years younger than me!).

    I am on top of doctor visits and what I want to work on is going to my chiropractor more regularly — I know that would help my neck. I just need to do it though!

    I love the second picture of the pink flowers — they are just gorgeous!

  16. If I were rich I’d get my teeth cleaned every month, but I’m not, so twice a year must suffice. Dental floss and Sonicare are necessities for me.
    Wow, your pictures are ending up all over the place! Have you ever considered putting a watermark/logo on your photos (I think that’s what they’re called) to keep other people from using them without permission? (I have no idea how much work that is.)

    • yes I have done it sometimes and it’s not really that much more work I just hate seeing watermark’ed pics so unless it’s something I really worry about…I am “trusting” the world not to steal them and am going sans watermark on my “every day” images unless I feel it’s really something special that I dont want stolen.

  17. If sugar=cavities you and I would both have a mouth full!


    So nope, I don’t think their is a correlation at all!


  18. yayy! First giveaway I’ve ever won, that was something nice to wake up to :) I don’t really think there’s a correlation, I think it’s mostly genetics and how much you take care of your teeth daily. Weekends= work for me, but that’s ok, I like work!

  19. Beautiful pictures (as always). I love how you truly take time to stop and smell (or photograph) the roses. Yayy for no cavities. I’m dreading my next apt in September. I know I have an issue on one tooth :(. I go every six months. Have a great weekend!

  20. I think most of dental issues are hereditary, because I am fastidious about dental hygiene and cleaning and I don’t eat much sugar, never drank sodas, and yet I am plagued by lots of cavities, and am in the process of getting nearly every single one of my molars crowned.

    My hubby, on the other hand, never flosses, often just rinses with listerine instead of brushing AND only brushes for about 30 seconds when he does brush and he just had a perfect check up after not going to the dentist for almost 4 years! And he consumes lots of sugary desserts, sodas and beer!

  21. I am terrified of the dentist for some reason. I try to be diligent about my 6 month cleanings so that stuff doesn’t build up and so that my teeth are less prone to cavities!

  22. I just recently started going to the dentist again after not going for SEVERALL years. I’m talking like I hadn’t been like I was in elementary school and couldn’t remember the last time. This summer due to my negligence I’ve had; a root canal, an extraction, and 11 cavities :( I try to take good care of my teeth but the dentist told me my problems with such a large amount are also hereditary =/

    You and Josh (my boy-friend) are lucky to have such beautiful smiles <3

  23. I LOVE going to the dentist.. I just feel so much better with clean teeth

  24. I’m a little OCD about my teeth as well. I always have a 6 month checkup and luckily I haven’t had a cavity (if I did, it would be the worst day ever for me). I brush 2 times a day (more if they feel grody), drink lots of water and I floss at least twice a day. Nothing like the feeling of coming out with a clean smile and healthy teeth :)

  25. This may be completely untrue, but I’ve also heard that the later your teeth came in, the healthier your teeth will be. So far it holds true for me, I got my teeth late and have yet to have a cavity *knock on wood*. But I’m not going to lie, I’m pretty bad about going to the dentist (it’s been almost 2 years I think) and don’t floss very often…

  26. i’m going to the dentist today – but to put in a crown (ugh) after a root canal (double ugh)

  27. I love the dentist too! I hate it when I can start feeling buildup that I can’t get off myself. Unfortunately the insurance through my parents is up in September and I just had my last cleaning. Time to get a job with dental insurance or I’m paying out of pocket! lol

  28. I love the dentist!! I floss daily and that makes visits way easier. I wish I could go every 4 months, but my dental insurance says every 6 and I can’t afford to pay out-of-pocket. The last time I went I had a tiny cavity (they didn’t even fill it…waiting til my next cleaning), but they said it was because of the way my teeth are set and not anything I could have prevented. I was sooooo disappointed though!

  29. Sugar is the theme of the day, now isn’t it. Regarding candida and cavities… I have no idea. I’ve never read any studies that correlate the two, but I’m sure there’s something out there. I have 1 filling, but only because I have a sensitive tooth and they thought that would fix it. Silly dentist, it only made it worse! Good thing is though, with the sensitive teeth I do have, they react when I eat sugar. So it kinda prevents me from eating the stuff. Pain is no fun!
    We are covered for our dental work but only for once a year. So silly. But we manage. Flossing everyday + brushing 3 times a day is our trick!

  30. Ahhhhh, congratulations on the feature! And getting something accepted by Foodgawker is definitely something to get excited about! I’ve only submitted one pic but it took me THREE tries to get them to accept it!

    I’m usually pretty good about keeping up with my regular annual doctor/dental visits…especially the dentist…gotta love the “goodie bags”!

    I don’t think there is as much of a correlation between eating sweets and cavities as there is between brushing/flossing AFTER eating sweets and cavities…can’t be having that stuff sit around in your mouth throwing a party in between your teeth! ;)

  31. I used to go every 4 months, but am back to 6 months since my insurance didn’t cover the extra visit and I haven’t been having any problems.

    That’s awesome about Spry Living and Foodgawker, congrats!

    1. Every 6 months now.
    2. Yes, but mainly if teeth aren’t being probably brushed shortly after consumption. Problems start for people who snack on sugary treats at work, etc. and aren’t able to brush after.
    3. Not too many, visiting my grandma again and maybe a little shopping.

  32. You are way better about going to your cleanings than I am! I go yearly, and dread the day. Of course, I love that feeling I get when I’m walking out. But I get way over dramatic about drills and sharp pointy things. ;)

  33. I haven’t been great about it lately because my husband keeps getting laid off so we keep losing our insurance. I have a million cavities though. I always have, as a kid, and as I get older. Although the last time all I needed was to get an old filling replaced. So I must be doing a lot better!

    I was bummed that I didn’t get a freebie bag the last time I went. I never realized how fun it was, until I didn’t get one! I think my dentist is having problems because they used to be open five days a week and now they are only open two days and no free teeth-cleaning swag! Bummer.

  34. I’m terrible on the whole preventive maintenance thing: admire that you do it so well. I also think you’re _lucky_ with the teeth to some degree: both my parents have really terrible teeth, and I’ve always taken really good care of mine but still got loads of cavities. It’s awesome that you haven’t, and I think it’s definitely true that if you take good care of your teeth, sugar isn’t a problem at all.

  35. I am obsessed with dental hygiene as well. My dad is an oral surgeon so my family has always been up on our dental cleaning and good dental habits. Having said that, 2 of my 4 siblings had many cavities growing up the other 2-none. Genes defiantly affect the strength of our enamel. Some people are carriers for different strains of bacteria that live in our mouths that leads to cavities too.

    I believe sugar definitely contributes to cavities, but as long as you brush cavities can be avoided. Off to eat one of your marshmallow bars ;)

    • yeah if my dad was an oral surg I’m pretty sure it would be mandatory to be all over the oral care in the household :)

      and i am so glad that a marshmallow bar is in your day…and keep me posted what else you end up making eventually :)

  36. I hate the dentist but go twice a year, I think I’m prone to cavities and thinking my crohn’s may be to blame. I use a sonicare 2x a day and since using it my teeth are whiter. I have been told the toothpaste they use is bad if your teeth are already clean enough it breaks down the enamel on your teeth, so they don’t even clean mine half the time since they are clean. I do need to get better at flossing more often, I also only use natural tooth paste can’t stand reg anymore it tastes soo artificial to me. plus I can get toms of man 3pk cheap at bj’s club store.

  37. I have never had a cavity either! My dad brushed our teeth as kids (until we were about 10!). Oral hygiene was a big deal to him . We would have to stand in line..and he’d brush. I am very grateful he did that, and now i brush my son’s teeth as well. I am all for prevention!

  38. I had braces and applinaces in my mouth for my whole youth, and now I abhor the dentist! I almost never go. I try to just take care of my teeth the best I can, and hope for the best! I am not prone to cavities, and I don’t really think sugar is that bad.

  39. You do have pretty amazing teeth! I’ve been meaning to go for a clean/descale this year because I love the feeling afterwards too. We must be crazy – there’s not that many people in the world that willingly go to the dentist without there being an emergency connected to it!

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