Cheese, particularly cheddar, can do more than just flavor up your food and keep you from getting fat. A research study by the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) shows that it can also protect your teeth from erosion caused by acidic beverages.
How does it work?
The insides of our mouths are acidic and have a low pH. Consuming acidic drinks like soda, coffee, tea, and wine further decreases these pH levels and increase the mouth’s acidity, causing the enamel of the teeth to erode. Saliva helps to neutralize the acidity of the mouth and promotes an alkaline environment. Eating cheese speeds up this process by promoting salivation. The more alkaline the surface of the teeth is, the more protected it would be against dental erosion. In turn, this prevents the development of cavities.
Based on the research by AGD, cheddar cheese keeps the pH levels elevated for up to 30 minutes after eating compared to milk and yogurt which had no effect on the pH levels whatsoever.
Cheese also contains phosphate which is known to help strengthen the teeth and make them less prone to dental carries.
Recommendation: Eat a 1/3-ounce serving of cheese (preferably cheddar) after a meal or any low-fat alternative if you want to cut down on calories. Jeffrey Cole, president of the AGD, suggests eating small pieces of cheese in between meals, snacks, or a glass of any acidic drink.