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Europe approves gum for dental health
Updated: 12/5/2008 11:25:37 AM

Europe approves gum for dental health A gum that improves dental health? The European Food Safety Authority has given its stamp of approval to this claim.

The EFSA has accepted the premise that chewing gum containing 100 percent xylitol can help boost dental health by reducing the risk of tooth decay.

A total of five studies focusing on xylitol gums and their effects on children's dental health were reviewed to arrive at that conclusion.

An EFSA panel concluded that a cause-and-effect relationship between xylitol and a reduction in tooth decay can be observed.

To achieve that effect, those who are looking to improve their dental health should chew between 2 and 3 grams of xylitol-sweetened gum at least three times a day. Chewing after a meal should obtain the best effect, research suggested.

Meanwhile, the EFSA said it did not have sufficient evidence to determine if pastilles sweetened with xylitol would have a similar effect to gum.

According to the California Dental Association, xylitol prevents the growth of bacteria which can lead to cavities.

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