Sunday, 25 February 2018

Keep drinking red wine - it can do you good

New research has boosted the theory that the polyphenols found in red wine can help fight tooth decay and gum disease. 

Results of a new study suggest the benefits of drinking red wine in order to maintain oral health are strong. Other drinks rich in polyphenols include coffee, green tea, cider, blueberries, raspberries, kiwis, cherries and beans.

Previous studies have suggested that polyphenols protect the body from harmful free radicals due to their antioxidants properties.

This most recent study, published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, suggests that  polyphenols might also boost health by working with “good bacteria” in our gut, while also fending off harmful bacteria in the mouth.


Researchers tested the effects of two polyphenols from red wine – caffeic and p-coumaric acid – on bacteria that stick to teeth and gums and cause dental plaque, cavities and gum disease. They found the wine polyphenols reduced the bacteria’s ability to stick to the cells.

When combined with the streptococcus dentisani – an oral probiotic that stimulates the growth of good bacteria – the polyphenols were even more effective at inhibiting the growth of bad bacteria.

Dr Blessing Anonye, research fellow at Warwick Medical School, Microbiology & Infection, Biomedical Sciences, said the findings were not a “green light” to drink more wine, but could contribute towards treating oral disease.

“Previous research demonstrated that red wine and grape seed extracts prevented the growth of different bacteria that causes oral disease,” she said. “This new research went further to show that wine polyphenols inhibited the ability of disease-causing bacteria in the mouth to attach to gum cells when used alone or in combination with an oral probiotic."

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