Green Tea Helps Prevent Halitosis

October 15th, 2009

green tea

There are various food products that help control the bad breath smell that exists in people’s mouths.  As we have previously discussed, halitosis is primarily caused by the volatile sulfur compounds (also known as VSCs) like H2S and CH3SH produced in the mouth.  Bacteria in the mouth convert proteins into substances cysteine and methionine, and these are metabolized into VSCs.  In general, halitosis cures focus on controlling the number of “bad” bacteria in the mouth. 

There is a strong relationship between the natural antioxidants of green tea and good health, since it has been shown to have antimicrobial and deodorizing effects.  For instance, green tea can encourage strength, energy, and decrease a person’s chance for getting cancer.  Methyl mercaptan, as you may have previously read, is one of the foul-smelling volatile sulfur compounds that cause bad breath.  Along with other plant extracts, green tea extracts were analyzed with gas chromatography to see how strong their effects were on neutralizing the smell of methyl mercaptan. 

Research has shown that green tea extracts can deodorize multiple foul-smelling compounds in a person’s mouth, which can exist there from eating meat, smoking tobacco, and so on. 

The components and properties of green tea can help decrease the chances of someone having cavities and gum disease.  It helps mimize the effects of bleeding gums by helping the blood in the mouth clot. 

The deodorizing activity of green tea polyphenols is actually stronger than that of sodium copper chlorophyllin, a derivative of chlorophyll that is known to reduce odors.  Green tea also inhibits a bacteria called Streptococcus mutans, which is a major cause of tooth decay.  Green tea polyphenols also have a lot of positive effects for health issues outside of the oral cavity.  

Sources: Chemistry and Applications of Green Tea by Takehiko Yamamoto
Centre national de la recherche scientifique

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Halitosis

October 15th, 2009

Halitosis

Dr. Katz discusses how to stop halitosis / bad breath on Washington Fox News.

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Bad Breath

October 15th, 2009

Bad Breath Dr. Katz discusses how to get rid of bad breath and how to test for it on Baltimore News.

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Bad Breath is one of Women’s Main Turn Offs

October 14th, 2009

When it comes to dating, everyone has their preferences.  Preferences can always vary (i.e. hair color, height, eye color, fitness level), but there are a few dislikes that tend to be the same throughout most women: being overly cocky/insecure, dominating the conversation, trying way to hard, looking like a slob, and last but not least, bad breath/body odor.

Bad breath (also known as halitosis) can be downright nasty!  Smell is an important sense, and bad smells can be the ultimate turn-off for women.  Usually a guy can taste his own breath, and if it’s stale, he should definitely take some precautions if he is going on a date.  Try some mouthwash, breath mints, etc.  This turn off can usually be fixed very easily.  If you do have chronic bad breath, it is worthwhile to check out the doctor or dentist and figure out what is wrong with you!  Not only is it depressing to have health issues, but it is depressing to scare off your dates, as well.  If there is a doubt in your mind that you have bad breath, ask a female friend before you scare off your potential girlfriends.  Bad breath can be a dealbreaker!

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Probiotics Serving New Functions in Different Markets

October 13th, 2009

probiotics

Many people are beginning to understand with probiotics that not all bacteria are bad.  In fact, probiotics have been contributing to good health for years. With an increasing demand of probiotics, people are requesting that they be available in forms other than yogurt and oral dietary supplements.  Consumers want more choices, since some people are sensitive to certain kinds of processing (i.e. temperature).  However, with constantly-improving technology, probiotics are being used in a broader market of goods.

The thought of beneficial bacteria has become more popular with the public, since studies have shown that probiotics can aid the immune system in the fight against the “bad guys”.  More and more yogurt brands are boasting probiotics on their labels, and companies are continuing to find ways to implement good bacteria strains into other foods that are not cultured by tradition.  This doesn’t necessarily mean a consumer will purchase this product, since a company tried adding probiotics to cheese, and this product didn’t sell too well.  This is because a consumer is not generally looking for cheese to add health benefits to a meal; instead, he or she usually uses cheese to add taste to what is being eaten.

People tend to be the most comfortable with probiotics being added to oral health care products, since strains of bad bacteria reside in the mouth, gums and teeth, and these bacteria can cause tooth enamel and gum disease.  Two of the most popular products that have received a high increase in growth are gums and mints, since functional gum has jumped 10% between 2007-2008.  A current trend in consumer education is people learning about the role that good strains of bacteria have in staying healthy and recovering one’s health. 

Streptococcus mutans is one of the Lactobacillus strains that work against enamel-eroding bacteria, and people can expect this strain to appear in gums and mints.  A sugar-free gum that came out recently contains the strain Lactobacillus reuteri, and there are mints that contain a mixture of strains L. reuteri, L. plantarum, L. rhamnosis and L. acidophilus, which target bad breath-causing bacteria.  Another company has developed a breath mint that features Streptococcus oralis, Streptococcus uberis, and Streptococcus rattus, all targeted at preventing and fighting dental decay and halitosis.  Surprisingly, there is even a strain of bacteria called Streptococcus oralis that actually has a whitening effect on the teeth, since it crowds out bad bacteria on the teeth’s surface. 

Pharmaceutical companies are creating different probiotic breath mints that will be designed for improving oral health, and lasting much longer than current probiotics without being stored in cold temperatures.  An important thing for manufacturers to remember is that the new oral care products being made need to use bacteria that exist naturally in the oral cavity, otherwise they will not last long in the mouth. 

 There are over 400 different species of bacteria in the digestive, and all of these strains are competing for space to inhabit.  In general, the good bacteria can crowd out the bad bacteria, which is why consuming probiotics can be helpful for those who have diarrhea, inflammatory bowel disease, lactose indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome, H. pylori (ulcer-causing bacteria) problems, and colon cancer.  It is also worth pointing out that these bacteria exist all over the body, including the mouth, skin, reproductive organs and other membranes.  Ingesting probiotics can even be beneficial for those with allergies, autism, arthritis, and liver and kidney problems.  

One of the major areas for probiotic’s growth in the market may be in immune defense, since probiotics can benefit the immune system’s response.  Immunity is related to gut health, and research has shown that probiotics improve cold and flu symptoms, allergic rhinitis and pollen allergies.  Asia and Europe have already been linking probiotics with immune health for many years, but the U.S. only recently caught on.  Probiotics also are known to prevent certain infections, so it may be useful with epidemics like the swine flu.  Various strains of bacteria have relieved fever symptoms, viral respiratory infections, and pneumonia

Probiotics, especially Lactobacilli, are effective in aiding the immune response and increasing the resistance to pathogens.  Newer territories that researchers are exploring are the effects of probiotics on inflammatory disease, cholesterol reduction and even anti-aging properties, post-myocardial infarction depression and stress management.  Even more surprising, there is groundbreaking research that probiotics can be beneficial in infant formulas, vaginal microbiota, and satiety (for weight management).

 A major challenge in administering probiotics is getting the right dosage, and making sure the correct strains go to the correct places in the body.  It is far from simple, and one of the major challenges that face manufacturers is heat, since it destroys the beneficial flora.  The ingredients in the probiotic supplements must be able to tolerate the handling, storage, processing, shelf-life issues, and the tempestuous environment of the acid in the stomach.  The limited amount of conditions that probiotics can handle seldom allow for applications outside of refrigerated supplements; however, more and more companies are improving the probiotics’ survival, so they are more protected- with longer shelf lives and slower releases.  With new technology constantly being released, some companies have even created a probiotic chocolate, and up and coming probiotic applications in cereal bars, cereals, ice creams, fresh fruit and vegetable juices, meal replacements, and biscuits.  Probiotics in hot tea and soup have even been made possible with these new advances in technology.  Last but not least, topical and personal care applications are now possible with probiotics, since antifungal and antiviral properties can be brought out during a process of fermentation.

 Currently, one of the main trends is pairing probiotics with other probiotics, since this enhances the probiotics’ ability to survive.  With the ever-changing and improving research, technologies and education of probiotics, innovators will continue to deliver new and improved products geared at improving everyone’s health. 

Source: Natural Products Insider

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