Candy That Doesn't Cause Cavities? Sweet!

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CCSS NAS-1

One of the biggest knocks against candy is that it causes cavities. Now some genius scientists from Berlin-based biotechnology firm, OrganoBalance, may have figured out a way to manufacture the sweet treats in a way that eliminates that risk almost entirely. Sounds too good to be true? Read on . . .

As you may or may not know, while sugar is considered the villain when it comes to cavities, it is actually the streptococci mutans present in the saliva that are the real culprits. The bacteria that love to feed off the remnants of sugar that remain on the surface of the teeth, release acid while doing so. This causes tooth enamel to wear down resulting in the dreaded holes or cavities.

To try render the bacteria harmless, Christine Lang and her colleagues at OraganoBalance turned to Lactobacillus paracasei. The bacteria that is naturally found in cultured milk product, Kefir, is known for its ability to bind with streptococci mutans and therefore could potentially help draw the bacteria away from the teeth. What was encouraging was that the idea had been successfully tested on rats.

In order to see if that would work, the team created two batches of mint candy - each coated with different amounts of dead L. paracasei. A third batch was left bacteria free. The researchers then lined up 60 lucky volunteers to test their theory.

They began by testing the level of streptococci mutans present in each participant's saliva. Then began the fun part - one third enjoyed candies with 1 milligram of L. paracasei, another third, ate mints that were covered with 2 milligrams, while the remaining received the unaltered treat. Each volunteer was allocated five pieces over the day and a half period. After that the scientists re-measured the bacteria levels to see if there was any significant difference.

According to the researchers who reported their findings in the December 2013 edition of Probiotics and Antimicrobial Proteins, three-quarters of the volunteers that had the bacteria-laced candies had less of the pesky streptococci mutans in their saliva then prior to the experiment. Even more interesting was that the volunteers who consumed the candy with two milligrams of L. paracasei, showed lower counts after just the first candy. Conversely, less than 60% of those who ate the unaltered mints experienced any reduction. What was even more encouraging is that the L. paracasei did not destroy any of the beneficial mouth bacteria.

Lang believes that because the L. paracasei cling on to the streptococci mutans, they do not allow them return to the tooth surface. This means that the simple acts of spitting or swallowing can help reduce the numbers present in the mouth substantially. She says that while most prevention methods rely on killing harmful bacteria, this one simply displaces them to areas where they can cause no damage.

While Lang and her team are still conducting experiments and trying to convince the world about the effectiveness of their theory, Croatia-based Plidenta is a step ahead. They have already introduced a toothpaste fortified with dead L. paracasei bacteria and know it works - at least for the 50 users they tracked for four weeks. Though that is certainly good news, what would be better is if a candy manufacturer stepped up to the challenge. Unfortunately, none have taken the bait . . . yet!

gizmondo.com, abcnews.com, medicalxpress.com.

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1432 Comments
  • animereina2020
    animereina2020Friday, May 15, 2020 at 3:39 pm
    Yum! I am glad they made such a thing. I thought that there were never going to do it...but if course they did! This article makes me want to go to a nearby store, and buy some candy! Candy...HERE I COME!
    • dogfuntime
      dogfuntimeFriday, May 8, 2020 at 8:08 am
      Nice Candy that causes no cavities.🍬🍫🍪🍪
      • bookfan2008
        bookfan2008Friday, May 8, 2020 at 5:52 am
        Wow cool!
        • doggonegirl
          doggonegirlThursday, May 7, 2020 at 4:10 pm
          I adore candy
          • lolipoperz
            lolipoperzWednesday, April 22, 2020 at 7:59 am
            I prefer real candy🍬But I guess that could be good👍?!
            • kittykatoof
              kittykatoofMonday, February 10, 2020 at 5:45 pm
              leave a like and/or follow if you love gummies
              • kittykatoof
                kittykatoofMonday, February 10, 2020 at 5:43 pm
                i love candyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy
                • cattylala101
                  cattylala101Monday, February 10, 2020 at 12:18 pm
                  COOL! I LOVE CANDY!!!
                  • carebear0518
                    carebear0518Wednesday, December 18, 2019 at 5:37 am
                    I have that candy
                    • Not Telling Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 12:32 pm
                      Guys this is helping us learn about candy and cavities this is amazing . This reading log is really helping us with our lives, but don't eat too much candy it will cause a sugar rush. But whoever made this Thankssss. This is the only text i see that helps with life, it might be more but i never saw them . Right now this one is the best out of all the reading logs and my first. This one is my favorite and will be my forever favorite.