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Dent Update. 2012 Dec;39(10):721-4, 726.

Mouthwatering but erosive? A preliminary assessment of the acidity of a basic sauce used in many Indian dishes.

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University of Birmingham, School of Dentistry, College of Medical and Dental Sciences, St Chad's Queensway, Birmingham B4 6NN, UK.


The aim of this study was to assess whether some types of Indian cuisine may contain erosive components. Indian dishes were prepared by a previously published method and their pH measured using a pH probe. The results indicated: (i) that some components of Indian cooking, such as tomatoes and red chilli powder, had the potential to erode enamel; (ii) that the pH of some foods was reduced with increasing temperature; and (iii) that all the basic masalas made and tested had a pH of less than 4.5. Within the limitations of the study, it may be concluded that the basic sauce/masala used in north Indian dishes may have erosive potential.


This information could be considered useful when advising patients who eat Indian curries about causes of acid erosion of their teeth.

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