Why the Pucker With Your Morning OJ?

After you jump out of bed and brush your teeth, health experts are saying your next step toward maintaining good health is eating a healthy breakfast—but sometimes that morning glass of orange juice seems more bitter than healthful.

Scientists at the American Chemical Society recently posted a new episode of its award-winning Bytesize Science video series (www.BytesizeScience.com) that sheds some light "on a common breakfast disturbance—the foul taste of orange juice after you brush your teeth," the ACS's website says.

The components of toothpaste include a variety of ingredients that add flavors, body, texture and, of course, cleaning power. Toothpastes contain water, abrasive agents to clean plaque, fluoride to fight cavities and a detergent to produce the suds in your morning oral health routine.

Although the detergent used in toothpaste, sodium lauryl sulfate, does a great job cleaning teeth, it also affects your mouths 10,000 taste buds. Each of your taste buds has about 100 taste molecules, and there are taste molecules that can distinguish five different types of taste: sweet, sour, bitter, salty and another type of taste called umami (a Japanese term for a pleasant and savory taste).

The sodium lauryl sulfate not only inhibits the sweet receptors in your mouth, it also opens the pathways to the bitter taste buds, making that morning glass of orange juice taste unappealing.

View the video for all the details.

The ADA offers consumers advice on choosing a toothpaste on its consumer website MouthHealthy.org.

When you see the ADA Seal on a package, you can be sure the product inside has been scientifically evaluated to be safe and effective. You may take it for granted that's true of all products, but not all products submitted for the Seal meet the ADA's stringent requirements. In fact, to obtain the ADA Seal companies frequently are asked to meet higher standards than what is required by law.

The ADA Seal is never sold. No profit goes to the ADA when a company earns the Seal. The ADA Seal is not an endorsement of a particular product; rather it is designed to help you know that claims made on the label say what they do and do what they say. These claims are approved by the ADA before the product ever hits the market. 

View a list of toothpastes with the ADA Seal by clicking on the ADA Seal Products tab on MouthHealthy.org. And, for maximum taste and enjoyment, save that glass of OJ for a little while after you brush your teeth!

© 2017 American Dental Association. All rights reserved. Reproduction or republication is strictly prohibited without the prior written permission from the American Dental Association.

This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.

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