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I floss daily, brush after every meal, and trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries.

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Thursday, March 30, 2006

This Just In

New shit has come to light. Today I heard a dentist utter the words “chocolate is actually good for your teeth.”

I have a chunk of chocolate (Trader Joe’s Pound Plus Bittersweet with Almonds) nestled meltingly atop my grateful tongue as I type.

O. had an appointment with his dentist this morning to get sealants on his molars. (He has apparently inherited my deeply-grooved teeth rather than my Old Man’s relatively shallow – thus not cavity prone – teeth.) Dr. Rose had advised me to let O. snack in the car ride over, since he wouldn’t be allowed to eat for two hours after the sealant was applied, so I gave him a baggie full of almonds. As the good doctor cleaned bits of almond out of his teeth, he told O. “Keep eating almonds. Those won’t give you cavities.” And (ever the eager student of all things oral) I said “That makes sense. I guess protein doesn’t break down into sugars like carbohydrates.” Dr. Rose said “Yes, that, plus the fats in nuts absorb so much acid that they actually help prevent cavities. In fact…” and it was here that he said the magic words:

Chocolate is actually good for your teeth. All that fat just soaks up acids, and there’s an antibacterial agent in cocoa that prevents plaque.” Apparently as long as it’s not adulterated with caramel, raisins, or other sticky agents, chocolate does not cause cavities. Chocolate with nuts would presumably be okay.

I didn’t get a chance to fully probe the intricacies of the chocolate-as-orally-healthful factoid because I was basking in the pool of golden light that bathed me, listening to the transcendent sounds of choirs of angels singing Mendel’s “Hallelujah Chorus.” Then suddenly the appointment was over and we were given a blue surgical glove blown up into a balloon and ushered out.

I still plan to brush my teeth after eating chocolate (just as I brush my teeth after eating just about anything). But never again will I face the dilemma of whether to cut a chocolate afterglow short with brushing or a vigorous swish of water around the mouth (the next best thing to brushing, in my book). From now on, I will let those beautifully murky cocoa notes linger, safe in the assurance that “chocolate is actually good for my teeth.”

I’m taking my young cousin JD for a visit to Dr. Rose next month, and at that time I will get more details and report back. Until then, consider yourself privy to the new shit.

14 Comments:

Anonymous sweatpantsmom said...

This is great news. Especially since I, too, am a big fan of Trader Joe's chocolate (dark, with almonds.)

Let me know if you can locate a doctor who will tell me that bacon is good for my arteries.

1:33 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Oral hygiene is, after all, a very complicated case - a lot of ins, a lot of outs, a lot of what-have-yous.

6:30 AM  
Blogger DoctorMama said...

Further support for my contention that chocolate is food, not candy.

Bacon may not be good for your arteries, but remember that alcohol is! I remember it all the time ...

7:40 AM  
Blogger Mona Buonanotte said...

I have NEVER been so happy to read anything in all my life! Now if I can only find those dark chocolate easter candies my girlfriends are talking about....

10:02 AM  
Blogger E. said...

Chocolate is food, yes. And so is beer (particularly Guinness). Alchohol is good for the arteries? Great news. I know red wine keeps those French folks healthy.

It's going to be a great weekend.

6:30 PM  
Blogger Des_Moines_Girl said...

No freakin' way! You just made my weekend!!!

6:25 AM  
Blogger Esereth said...

Chocolate is good for your teeth. I've decided to include all things chocolate in this revelation. Thusly, Zingers and Ho Hos are good for your teeth, as I had always suspected. (I also suspect butter is good for my fingernails).

This is super news.

8:47 PM  
Blogger E. said...

Butter must be good for your fingernails. And your hair. (And given what Dr. Rose told me, your teeth. If you can't brush, just pop a mouthful of butter or any other of your favorite fatty substances to absorb that acid!)

9:44 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

I must ponder this new fact, While eating something....made of chocolate

4:53 PM  
Blogger phlegmfatale said...

You SO just made my day, darling!!!

8:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was having a really bad day until this chocolate news. I have never had a cavity so maybe now I can use a new excuse for my weight, "I am just watching out for my oral health"

1:00 PM  
Blogger smarti30 said...

I was having a bad day until I read this. I have never had a cavity and maybe now I know that it wasnt just all the brushing and flossing. The best new is that now I have a new excuse for my weight, I am safeguarding my oral health.

1:38 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Whoa! Good to hear that chocolates are good for teeth. Maybe, there are instances that they can also damage our teeth because of sugar. That's why we shouldn't eat too many sweets. As a matter of fact, there are many ways to avoid damaging teeth by: regular brushing, flossing after meals, and gargling with mouthwash. Also, it is important that you regularly visit your trusted dentist. For those people who have phobia on dental procedures, they can now easily cope their fears because of advance sedation dentistry. Raleigh (NC) is one of the areas known for truly exceptional sedation dentistry (Raleigh).

1:19 AM  
Anonymous wisdom teeth removal said...

Yey! Hearing that chocolate is good for the teeth is music to my ears. I really love chocolates but am always afraid of the adverse effect that it could have on my pearly whites. However, I think people should understand that you should eat chocolate in moderation if you don't want it to be the cause of cavities.

8:48 PM  

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