A recent study by researchers at Malmö University in Sweden show that the lactic acid bacteria called Lactobacillus reuteri improves oral health.
Lactobacillus reuteri was first discovered in the 1960s and at this time 30-40% of the population had it naturally in their bodies. Today this number is down to around 10-20% of the population and this is believed to be due to changes in lifestyle and food consumption. Many preservatives found in foods today kill the bacteria.
Gabriela Sinkiewicz a researcher at Malmö University also found that Lactobacillus reuteri occurs naturally in breast milk of women but that on average women in Japan and Korea have higher concentrations. Gabriela Sinkiewicz says that Lactobacillus reuteri is important for infants as it help’s their intestinal system and immune system.
In addition, she determiend that that the occurrence of both plaque and bleeding from the gums declined after only two weeks of using chewing gum containing certain strains of Lactobacillus reuteri. There are curently numerous studies underway to explore how Lactobacillus reuteri and it’s link to oral health and allergies.
If you are familar with the probiotic called Culturelle, which can be bought at a pharmacy such as CVS, it contains Lactobacillus GG which is a natural preservative in yogurt and diary products. It is useful as it helps to prevent harmful bacteria from growing in the intestine.
Perhaps the reuteri strain of Lactobacillus may one day appear at your local pharmacy and be used to help further improve your oral health.