Pearly Reds

A merlot a day keeps the… DENTIST away?

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science saying, apparently it does in Spain!

We’ve heard of the many potential benefits of red wine for our colon and heart… but could it help us in other ways?

Bacteria live ALL over our bodies, including in our mouths. Sometimes they cling to our teeth and gums, causing plaque and cavities. And what we eat or drink has a BIG effect on both them and us.

Adelaida [ah-day-LIE-duh] Esteban-Fernandez and colleagues from Spain studied how wine could impact tooth disease. The first step of any bacterial infection is the STICKING of bacteria to host cells. So, they looked at how well harmful germs stuck to human cells… with WINE in the mix. They also studied some compounds found in wine, known as polyphenols [pah-lee-FEEN-ulz].

What did they learn? In all cases, the wine reduced pathogen stickiness to around HALF the normal amount! The scientists believe the polyphenols found in red wine get in the way of bad bacteria, physically BLOCKING where the bugs can attach!

Idea for a new flavored mouthwash! Not minty, but perhaps a nice beaujolais. And with some fava beans…?