Dental Articles for Individuals

Dental Articles for Individuals

Are dairy products good for your teeth?

Are milk, cheese, and other dental products good for your teeth?

Milk contains a sugar called lactose which is fortunately pretty benign as far as tooth decay is concerned. Even with the presence of lactose milk does not promote tooth decay because of the presence of high amounts of calcium, phosphate, and casein which is a milk protein that helps strengthen teeth.

Eating cheese can actually help protect teeth from developing cavities because eating cheese helps increase the flow of saliva which helps neutralize acids in the mouth. Cheese also increases calcium concentration which helps stop the demineralization of tooth enamel. The fat that is abundant in cheese also helps reduce bacteria in the mouth.

A lump of cheese is often eaten in Europe after a meal as a desert. European cultures have known for centuries that cheese helps protect the tooth enamel after a meal by neutralizing bacteria in the mouth. So next time you have a sugary meal have a piece of cheese when you finish to help neutralize the effects of the sugars in your mouth.

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Do the health benefits of berry pigments make it past the mouth?

Research suggests compounds responsible for the rich hues in colorful fruits, like berries, promote health. However, authors of a new study warn the potential benefits of anthocyanin compounds in berries may not make it past the mouth.

To test which health-promoting substances in berries are likely to survive and be produced in the mouth, researchers of the study, from the Ohio State University, measured the extent of anthocyanin pigment degradation when exposed to saliva.

Researchers of the study exposed extracts of anthocyanin pigments from blueberries, chokeberries, black raspberries, red grapes and strawberries to the saliva collected from 14 people. They found two families of anthocyanins were consistently broken down when exposed to saliva: delph inidin and petunidin, and four other families were more stable: cyanidin, pelargonidin, peonidin and malvidin, according to a news r elease from the university.

Additionally, oral microflora contributed to the degradation of all anthocyanins. The study suggests that the bacteria within one’s oral cavity are a primary mediator of pigment metabolism. The bacteria are converting compounds that are present in the foods into metabolites.

One area of great interest is whether the health-promoting benefits associated with eating anthocyaninrich fruits like berries are provided by the pigment itself, the natural combinations of the pigments in the fruit or the metabolites produced by bacteria in the mouth and other regions of the gastrointestinal tract.

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