Healthy teeth depend on a constant supply of nutrients to fuel routine repairs by the body. Teeth are particularly reliant on calcium, a mineral that is especially abundant in dairy foods. However, high calcium levels are not the only reason why dairy is good for teeth. Here is a look at what a recent study found on this subject.
Dairy Has Anti-Cavity Effects
The present study was published in the clinical journal General Dentistry in May/June 2013. In a group of 68 teenaged subjects, the researchers measured the pH of saliva after consumption of dairy foods. The researchers already knew that a lower pH increases the risk of tooth decay. While sugar-free yogurt and milk did not affect salivary pH, cheese quickly raised the pH.
Understanding the Findings
According to the researchers, chewing the cheese may have resulted in higher oral pH by increasingly the flow of saliva. However, cheese may also contain natural substances that coat the teeth to protect them from cavity-causing acids. Of course, dairy foods high in sugar could still lead to cavities. While all sugar-free dairy products will supply minerals to the teeth, cheese may be particularly beneficial for the reasons listed here.
A healthy diet is an important preventive factor against tooth decay. Combined with daily brushing and flossing and regular check-ups, frequent consumption of dairy foods may help patients avoid cavities and tooth loss. Patients can schedule a consultation with our Northridge dentist to learn more about how dairy foods can benefit the teeth.
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