Can You Prevent Dental Decay with Candy?

Can this be true? It turns out that SOME Gummi Bears CAN fight the bacteria that cause decay, explains Danbury Dentist Jay M. Marks, DMD. What you need to find, is candy made with xylitol, which is a substitute for sugar. Xylitol is also common in sugarless gum. The secret ingredient that fights decay is the xylitol.

The big experiment

A recent experiment with children showed that kids who ate the bears with xylitol 3 times/day over 6 hrs, had less dental plaque and bugs.

What is Xylitol

It may sound like a laboratory creation, but Dr. Marks says it is a sweetener that is a natural ingredient in vegetables, fruits, berries (strawberries, raspberries), lettuce, endives, mushrooms, corncobs etc. The mechanism of this action is to adjust the pH levels in the mouth. This affects the bacteria that cause dental decay, as well as viruses, which thrive in acid environments. So, not only does this sweetener lessen dental caries by as much as 80%, but also decreases calorie intake!

Where to get Xylitol

You may have to wait a little while for Gummies to have xylitol, it is coming soon. Meanwhile you can imbibe xylitol in the form of mints and sugarless gum from Orbit, Trident, Carefree, and Altoids. The ideal amounts are twelve grams/day. One stick of gum has slightly more than 1 gram of xylitol. Is more, better? Dr. Marks says any more may produce unwanted laxative effects due to its high amount of fiber.

As you may have guessed, it takes more than eating gummi bears to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Visit you dentist at least twice a year, and brush and floss to prevent decay and gum disease. If you have any questions, or would like to schedule an appointment, please contact us. Keep an eye out for the gummi bears at a store near you