A note from the desk of Dr. Tetsuo Nakamoto, Theodent’s Chief Science Officer;
Human teeth are comprised of small crystallites of hydroxylapatite (HAP) mineral. In the 1980s, a serendipitous discovery was made during research on the effects of caffeine (1,3,7-trimethlxanthine). We now know that ingesting caffeine results in the production of smaller than normal crystallites on the surface of teeth. We then found the opposite to be true with a variant molecule of caffeine, called theobromine (3,7-dimethylxanthine), which exists in cacao (the source of chocolate).
In contrast to the effects of caffeine, when theobromine was introduced, it increased HAP crystallite size and strength. The discovery of theobromine’s role in producing larger HAP crystallites resulted in additional analysis comparing this compound’s effect on tooth enamel vs. the similar intended effect of fluoride. Theobromine’s effect in hardening enamel proved to be substantially more effective than fluoride’s effect on enamel. Many people are concerned about the toxic properties of fluoride. This research revealed that theobromine, in the correct dosage, could be a more effective and a safer alternative to fluoride as the primary ingredient in toothpaste.
Cacao does have an interesting history. In 1753 Swedish taxonomer Carl Linnaeus named the cacao plant “theo-broma,” which translates to “food of the gods”. He was apparently a believer in the power of cacao. Fluoride-free Theodent toothpastes contain theobromine (rennouTM ) as the primary active ingredient. Little did Linnaeus know that cacao would be a gift from god in so many other capacities, including boosting oral health.
- Tetsuo Nakamoto, DDS, PhD
Remineralization of Artificial Enamel Lesions by Theobromine
Theobromine remineralizes better than fluoride.
Effects of theobromine toothpaste on dental tubules
Evaluation of human enamel surfaces treated with theobromine: a pilot study
Theobromine: A safe and effective alternative for fluoride dentifrices
Maternal fluoride exposure reduces IQ scores in offspring
Theobromine vs. Fluoride: a neural network analysis
US Patent #9962325B2 Compositions containing theobromine and their use in treating tooth hypersensitivity
Sensitivity reduction in just 3 days
US Patent #9610235B2: Methods and compositions to improve mechanical resistance of teeth
A discovery that theobromine hardens, strengthens, and repairs enamel