The Secret to Optimal Oral Health May Surprise You!
The Secret to Optimal Oral Health May Surprise You!
By Amanda Williams, MPH
A healthy mouth is the key to a healthy body. Our mouths are filled with many microorganisms that can lead to severe health consequences, including heart disease. This is why we have been taught from a young age to brush and floss our teeth daily. The cleaner we keep our mouths, the less likely we have opportunistic infections that create gum disease and tooth decay, and even worse than that, systemic infections that can cause numerous health problems. Besides regular dental cleanings with your dental provider, we can also take control of our daily oral health with two natural nutrients - White tea and Coenzyme Q10.
How Coenzyme Q10 Works in Your Body
You have probably heard of Coenzyme Q10 (also known as CoQ10) for optimizing cardiovascular and brain health, but it has also been shown to have wonderful benefits to oral health, as well. Human cells synthesize CoQ10 from the amino acid Tyrosine, in an eight-step aromatic pathway, requiring adequate levels of vitamins such as Folic acid, Niacin, Riboflavin, and Pyridoxine. Our body’s ability to make CoQ10 efficiently and in high-quantity is certainly required and necessary. This is especially true in areas of the body with high-energy demand, such as the heart, brain, immune system, and even the gingival region of the mouth. This is true, especially when using medications such as the cholesterol-lowering class of drugs - statins, the high blood pressure class of drugs known as beta blockers, as well as diuretics and certain antibiotics. When CoQ10 levels get to be too low, it leads to reduced energy output and lowered free radical scavenging ability. You should have your blood levels tested by your doctor so you know your CoQ10 status.
Coenzyme Q10 for Oral Health
When it comes to periodontal disease, an overabundance of anaerobic bacteria can lead to inflammation and tissue destruction. High levels of CoQ10 can be regarded as a potent free-radical scavenger in the mouth and can provide significant protection from the destructive damage from toxins caused by bacteria. Researchers at The University of Texas Austin campus studied the impact of CoQ10 on patients with gingival disease back in 1974. They found a direct correlation between low levels of CoQ10 and an increased incidence of gingival disease. In a randomized, double-blind, controlled study done in 1994, researchers found a significant reduction in plaques and gingival bleeding, as well as improvement in gingival scoring in subjects given topical CoQ10 compared to placebo in their 28 day study. Interestingly enough, you do not see this problem being addressed in the dental or medical communities. Luckily for us, there are ways to utilize CoQ10 in a topical form on a daily basis to fend off harmful free-radicals and provide our mouths with a powerful punch of gingival support.
Benefits of White Tea Extract
White tea is a great natural source of fluoride, which makes it possible for remineralization of dentin. White tea contains tannins, flavonoids, and fluoride to support a healthy oral environment. The tannins play a role in lessening the impact of high starch foods on our teeth, which can lead to cavities. The flavonoids, especially catechins, are beneficial to targeting plaque buildup and scavenges the free radicals in our mouth. The most potent and commonly studied catechin of tea is EGCG, also known as Epigallocatechin gallate. EGCG has been shown to inhibit the growth and adherence of the bacteria Porphyromonas gingivalis to human buccal cells. This is a major finding regarding the protective measures of EGCG, as we know that bacterial overgrowth is the cause of gingivitis. Penn State University recently published their study findings showing EGCG has protective effects against oral cancers. In another study, EGCG was shown to increase the free radical fighting and reactive oxygen species negating property of a key enzyme in the mouth. Oral peroxidases are involved in our oral defense mechanisms and fend off harmful and damaging bacteria. The study showed that higher EGCG intake from either an oral mouthwash or drinking tea correlated to a significant increase in oral peroxidases activity. This leads to greater protection from oxidative stress and overall better oral health.
Next time you go in for your next dental cleaning, give them something more to talk about besides the weather. Get your mouth happy and healthy with CoQ10 and White Tea Extract. You’ll have even more to smile about!
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