Sunday, November 30, 2008

Chewing Gum Can Help Your Improve Your Gums and Teeth

Here are a few good reasons for chewing (sugarless) gum, but remember it must have this in it...

Does Your Gum Have Vitamin C?

Snapping and popping gum remain image busters -- just ask Britney Spears watchers. But here's a good excuse for discreet chewing: less blood at the dentist's office.

If your gums bleed a lot during cleaning -- a sign of subpar dental health -- your dentist may urge you to floss more. But chew gum more? It could help. In a recent study, gum chewers experienced less gingivitis-like bleeding than non-chewers, but only if their gum of choice was enriched with vitamin C. Better yet, they didn't have to chew for a long time to get the benefit. Dentists have been concerned that too much direct contact between tooth enamel and vitamin C leads to a breakdown in tooth structure, but there was no problem with erosion in this study.

And gum chewers didn't need to chew long -- only for about 15 minutes -- to release nearly all of the vitamin C in their sample gum. But they did chew daily -- about five times each day, in fact -- to achieve the benefits.

Sound like a lot of chewing? Consider this: The benefits didn't stop at just healthier gums. Chewers also had less plaque and tartar on their teeth.

Tooth and gum trouble begins when tartar forms on the tooth near or under the gum line, causing gum inflammation and possibly periodontal disease. Daily brushing and flossing and regular professional cleaning will remove the troublesome substance. And although gum chewing isn't a substitute for good oral care, vitamin C-enriched gum did appear to help minimize tartar and plaque in this study, particularly in people whose mouths tended to produce lots of the stuff.

Chewing sugarless gum helps you in other ways, too. It sweeps away the sugar and nasty by-products of bacteria lurking in your mouth. Go for vitamin-C enriched sugarless gum and your pearly whites may be in even better shape. Look for gum that contains vitamin C at health food and supplement stores.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Amazing Olive Oil News

Olive oil -- the unsaturated fat that’s great for your heart -- is making headlines again. But this time it’s for helping something a little lower down: your stomach.

Research suggests that polyphenols in olive oil may inhibit the bacterium that causes most stomach ulcers.

Heard of H. Pylori?Antibiotics are the treatment gold standard for Helicobacter (H.) pylori, the ulcer-causing bacterium that’s tough enough to survive the acidity of people’s stomachs. But resistant strains of H. pylori are now found worldwide. Fortunately, some researchers are seeking alternative therapies, and in recent studies, the polyphenols in olive oil showed tremendous potential. Not only could they withstand the harsh gastric juices of the stomach, but they also seemed to kill off H. pylori pretty handily -- even antibiotic-resistant strains. Find out how to tell the difference between the burn of a stomach ulcer and the heat of heartburn.

Olive Oil Power BoostersTo protect the polyphenols in your olive oil and get the most out of the stuff, store it in a dark bottle away from sunlight, and don’t overheat it. (Check out how the YOU Docs suggest heating your olive oil.)

Recipe CornerSqueeze more olive oil into your day with these simple-to-do EatingWell recipes:
Give sauteed veggies a lift with Herbed Extra-Virgin Olive Oil.

Kick up the flavor of salads with a quick homemade dressing. Try this easy Basic Vinaigrette.

Set out these 10-minute Garlic-Herb Marinated Olives at your next soiree.

~ Via Real Age.