| GEO Health|
| Olive oil, chewing gum and green tea prevent plaque build-up|
| Updated at: 0940 PST, Wednesday, May 12, 2010|
LONDON: Olive oil, chewing gum and green tea help prevent the build-up of bacteria.
Plaque is one of the most common complaints that often makes people take a trip to the dentists. “Plaque forms when decay-causing bacteria attach to the surface of tooth enamel, forming a sticky film. This can build up and harden around tooth and gum margins. The bacteria living in the plaque release acids that weaken tooth enamel and increase the risk of tooth decay. The bacteria and their acids also raise the risk of gum inflammation,” explain experts at the British Dental Association.
Green tea, red wine and cranberry juice contain substances called polyphenols that reduce plaque-formation and stop cavity-causing bacteria from sticking to teeth. Trials at the University of Rochester Medical Centre in the US found that drinks such as cranberry juice may help wash away up to 50 per cent more cavity-causing bacteria from the mouth. Polyphenols can also help prevent oral bacteria from producing acids that dissolve tooth enamel.
Limit plaque-formation and strengthen teeth. by adding olive oil to salads and cooking. University of Madrid researchers studied the anti-cavity properties of olive oil after discovering that residents of towns where olive oil is manufactured have uncharacteristically low levels of tooth decay and gum disease.
Chew on gums containing Xylitol or Sorbitol, sugar substitutes that have a plaque-reducing effect. Xylitol cannot be utilised by oral bacteria and they starve. As the bacteria die off, there is a reduction in decay. A review of studies by the Harvard School of Dental Medicine found that those who chew dental gums regularly have 30 to 60 per cent less decay.