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26 March 2024

Is Chocolate Good for your Teeth?


When dental student Summer Booth expressed interest to her professor about starting a research project, he mentioned a substance in chocolate, theobromine, could have cavity-preventing properties—and she was sold.

“I was immediately intrigued by the idea that ingredients in chocolate, of all things, could actually be good for our teeth,” said Booth, a second-year student at the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine (CU SDM). She swiftly got to work with Professor and Assistant Director of Orthodontic Research Clifton Carey, PhD. They studied theobromine in the form of a rinse, compared to a water rinse, and found it to significantly prevent the demineralization of the human enamel samples. 

Further studies are planned to compare the data to a fluoride control, as well as a synergistic trial with theobromine and fluoride to see if they can prevent erosion even better together than independently. 

Booth noted, “Despite fluoride being consistently proven as the gold standard to protect teeth from decay, there is still a growing population of fluoride-concerned people. If this becomes a larger issue in the future, theobromine could serve as an alternative in maintaining the enamel mineralization in patients who desire such an option.” 

Unfortunately, eating more chocolate is not the answer. Booth said, “The sugars would likely counteract any good the theobromine could do for the enamel. But dark chocolate does have more theobromine than milk chocolate if you have to pick one!” 

Booth presented her research poster at the International Association for Dental Research (IADR) General Session & Exhibition in New Orleans, Louisiana. 

Read more here.


Author: Laura Ramsey 

Source: https://news.cuanschutz.edu/

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