Food components with anticaries activity
Caries is the most common oral infectious disease in the world. Its development is influenced also by diet components that interfere with pathogen mutans group Streptococci (MGS) activity. A very active research to identify functional foods and their components that are generally recognised as safe has been ongoing, with the aim of developing alternative approaches, to the use of synthetic chlorhexidine, and at the reduction or prevention of caries. Until now convincing evidence exists only for green tea as a functional food for oral health, partly owing to its high content of catechins, especially epigallocatechin-gallate. A number of other foods showed potential anticaries activity. Some other foods able to act against MGS growth and/or their virulence factors in in vitro tests are: apple, red grape seeds, red wine (proanthocyanidins), nutmeg (macelignan), ajowan caraway (nafthalen-derivative), coffee (trigonelline, nicotinic and chlorogenic acids, melanoidins), barley coffee (melanoidins), chicory and mushroom (quinic acid). In vivo anticaries activity has been shown by cranberry (procyanidins), glycyrrhiza root (glycyrrhizol-A), myrtus ethanolic extract, garlic aqueous extract, cocoa extracts (procyanidins), and propolis (apigenin, tt-farnesol).
► Caries is the most common oral infectious disease in the world. ► Evidence exists that tea is a functional food for oral health owing to its catechin (EGCg) content. ► Further research is needed for anticaries functional foods and natural safe food components.
Journal: Current Opinion in Biotechnology - Volume 23, Issue 2, April 2012, Pages 153–159