13th April 2014
The cocoa bean in chocolate has tannins, polyphenols and flavonoids, which are antioxidants that all benefit your mouth and teeth.
A study carried out by Osaka University in Japan found that the cocoa bean husk, the outer part of the bean which usually goes to waste in chocolate production, has an anti-bacterial effect on the mouth and can fight effectively against plaque and other damaging agents. They do this by preventing bacteria from sticking to your teeth, neutralizing the microorganisms that cause bad breath, preventing infections in your gums, and battling tooth decay. As chocolate has all these antioxidants, it can also reduce inflammation in other parts of the body. Not only has it been shown to help with artery and heart health, but it may also improve your mood.
Dark chocolate contains Theobromine, a chemical similar to caffeine. Though the research is mixed, some studies have shown that people who consume dark chocolate report a better mood and higher energy levels. You cannot just eat any chocolate, though, since the sugars added to some will effectively offset all of these great effects. The best kind of chocolate for preventing tooth decay is dark chocolate. It is the least processed and closest to the cocoa bean.
You can find tooth-friendly dark chocolate at your local supermarket, and most bars show their cocoa percentage clearly on the label (the higher the percentage, the better it is for your teeth).
Visit your Bow Lane dentist to check your teeth are ready for your chocolate treat.