Surprising Health Benefits Of Chewing Food

Posted: Jan 19 2017, 2:09pm CST | by , Updated: Jan 19 2017, 2:16pm CST, in News | Latest Science News

 

Surprising Health Benefits of Chewing Your Food
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Chewing your food properly can boost your mouth's immune system which eventually protects you against illnesses.

Most of us chew food thoroughly because it makes easier for us to swallow it. However, researchers suggest there could be many more benefits of chewing your food.

Study led by teams at The University of Manchester reveals that chewing your food properly can boost your mouth’s immune system, which offers protection against several diseases. 

A specific type of immune cell is stimulated when we chew food. The immune cell, called Th17, works as a control tower for acquired immune system. Its primary function is to fight against bacterial and fungal infections. However, this immune cell can have both advantages and problems. In many previous studies, the excess of Th17 is linked to periodontitis – a common gum disease that can lead to complications in many other diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes and heart problem.

In other parts of body like guts and skin, TH17 is activated through the presence of friendly bacteria. But mouth has a different way of stimulating the immune cell: not by bacteria by chewing. Therefore, chewing or mastication can play an important role in establishing a protective immune response in our gums.

In the latest study, researchers have shown that the amount of TH17 in mouth can be increased by merely changing the hardness of food, which makes chewing an critical factor in Th17 deficiency. The research was conducted on mice.

“The immune system performs a remarkable balancing act at barrier sites such as the skin, mouth and gut by fighting off harmful pathogens while tolerating the presence of normal friendly bacteria,” said Dr Joanne Konkel, a biologist from The University of Manchester and lead author of the study.

“Importantly, because inflammation in the mouth is linked to development of diseases all around the body understanding the tissue-specific factors that regulate immunity at the oral barrier could eventually lead to new ways to treat multiple inflammatory conditions.”

 

 

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Hira Bashir covers daily affairs around the world.

 

 

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