Red wine ‘has potential’ to fight tooth and gum decay

Drinking wine can have an impact on oral health. Source: Pexels

If you’re a lover of red wine, the latest research surrounding the tasty alcoholic beverage may be music to your ears.

Drinking red wine has previously been linked to an array of health benefits for the heart, body and mind, but a new study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry has found it may also be beneficial for oral health.

Scientists from the Institute of Food Science Research in Madrid, Spain, found that most red wines contain certain chemicals that have the potential to fight tooth and gum disease. While this may seem confusing to people who believe that red wine can actually stain teeth, a compound known as polyphenols can actually improve oral health.

In the past, polyphenols has been known to work with bacteria in the gut to boost health, however, this study is one of the first to assess the impact the various strands can have on teeth and gums.

The study looked at the impact two red wine polyphenols had on bacteria that is known to stick on teeth and gums. These bacteria commonly cause cavities, plaque and gum disease. They also assessed the impact from other grape seeds and red wine extracts.

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Interestingly, researchers discovered that wine polyphenols and extracts all prevented the bacteria from sticking to the cells. They also discovered that two polyphenols alone – caffeic and p-coumaric acids – were even more effective when it came to preventing bacteria from sticking to cells.

When combined with oral probiotic Streptococcus dentisani, the results were even better. While the results are promising, it isn’t an excuse to guzzle down as much red wine as possible. As always, it is recommended that people continue to drink in moderation.

And, if you’re not a fan of wine, polyphenols is also found in an array of other delicious foods and drinks. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that it can be found in drinks including orange juice, lemon juice, coffee, both black and green tea, as well as cider.

It can also be found in an array of fruits such as cherries, black grapes, kiwi fruits, raspberries and blueberries.

Despite the positive results, it’s still recommended that people brush their teeth two times a day. The study has instead suggested that the findings could assist researchers in future when it comes to oral health and how to tackle gum and tooth decay.

What do you think? Do you think red wine could help when it comes to preventing tooth decay? Do you regularly drink wine?