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General Health : Lifestyle Last Updated: Apr 20, 2011 - 9:38:09 AM

Drinking green tea protects your teeth
By Sarah Han
Nov 25, 2008 - 6:39:28 PM

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Tuesday Nov 25, 2008 ( – Many  types of beverages can hurt your teeth because they contain sugar and acids, particularly citric acid.   But if you have a habit of drinking beverage, there is one type you can drink safely, that is, home brewed green tea, a study finds.


According to the study published in the July/August issue of General Dentistry, home brewed green tea is better than black tea when it comes to tooth protection.


For the study, Mohamed A. Bassiouny, DMD, BDS, MSc, PhD compared green and black tea to soda and orange juice for their effect on human teeth.


They found that tea just like water does not have an erosive effect.   And green tea is better than back tea due to its natural flavonoids and antioxidants.


But if you drink tea, you are advised not to use any additives such as milk, lemon or sugar.

Tea should be home brewed and you should avoid prepackaged iced teas which contain citric acid and high amounts of sugars.


Academy of General Dentistry issued a statement about the study and offered the following tips:


Tips to decrease erosion:


    * Reduce or eliminate carbonated beverages. Instead, drink water, milk, or tea

    * Skip the additives such as sugar, lemon, and milk

    * Drink acidic drinks quickly and through a straw

    * Chew sugar-free gum to increase saliva flow in your mouth

    * Rinse with water to neutralize the acids, and wait an hour before brushing


Green tea is most popular in the East and black tea is most welcome in the West.   Tea contains high levels of fluoride, which dentists believe have a protective effect on the teeth at certain levels.   But too much of it could damage teeth.

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