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Coconut oil helps combat tooth decay -- Irish experts

COCONUT oil fights tooth decay and could find its way into toothpaste and mouthwash, research suggests.

Scientists found that when the oil was treated with digestive enzymes it became a powerful killer of mouth bugs.

The bacteria it attacked included Streptococcus mutans, an acid-producing microbe that is a major cause of tooth decay.

The findings were presented at the Autumn meeting of the Society for General Microbiology at the University of Warwick in England.

Lead researcher Dr Damien Brady, from the Athlone Institute of Technology in the Republic of Ireland, said: "Incorporating enzyme-modified coconut oil into dental hygiene products would be an attractive alternative to chemical additives, particularly as it works at relatively low concentrations."