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Saliva: Interesting Characteristics to Keep the Oral Health Intact

Human saliva, produced in Salivary glands comprises 99.5 water along with many other important substances which include electrolytes, antibacterial compounds and various enzymes. The constituents of saliva are a big treasure in providing major leads on information related to oral and systematic diseases.

A God-given gift to everyone: Dr Suvarna V Chavannavar, Professor in the Department of Agricultural Microbiology at the University of Agricultural Sciences (GKVK), Bengaluru describes-"Saliva is a God-given gift to everyone. Saliva is the juice that is secreted by our body and it keeps the mouth moist. This juice has enzymes needed for the digestion of food. In addition to this, saliva has an enzyme called 'lysozyme' which is antibacterial. It can kill the bacterial cells which enter our mouth through food or air. So, saliva not only helps in the digestion of food, it can protect our mouth against infections caused by microorganisms and especially bacteria...

...Vegetables can help with pH maintenance:
The pH of saliva ranges between 6.3 to 7.2 with a mean of 6.7. This pH favours the growth of bacteria. However, thus entering bacteria are killed by lysozyme, a constituent of saliva. Saliva helps in maintaining the pH of the mouth. The consumption of lots of vegetables (Neutral to Alkaline), pH foods can also help in pH maintenance", concludes Prof Suvarna V. Chavannavar.

Treatment with Citralka has helped: Our ENT specialist Doctor with 41 years of experience, who prefers to remain anonymous informs- "Saliva has a pH normal range of 6.2-7.6 with 6.7 being the average pH. The resting pH of the mouth does not fall below 6.3. In the oral cavity, the pH is maintained near neutrality (6.7-7.3) by saliva. In a PG thesis done in my dept assessing salivary pH, all cancer patients were acidic; normal controls were alkaline. Patients with recurrent aphthous were found to have acidic saliva and I have treated them with an alkalinizing Citralka and they have substantially improved.

Citralka liquid is a medication used to treat gout and kidney stones. It inhibits the production of uric acid in the body, reducing gout attacks and preventing kidney stones. It works by raising the pH of urine, making it less acidic.

No checkup of saliva in a Corporate health checkup? WD Miller, Professor and Vice Chair of the Department of Basic and Translational Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania says-“The saliva of cattle, sheep, dogs, rabbits, etc., is essentially strong in alkaline reaction.'' This may account for their perfect digestion, as well as their immunity from decayed teeth. However, in a corporate health checkup, salivary pH which is important, is not checked.

People generally live 120-140 years! The high alkaline pH, active hydrogen, micro-clustered water molecules, and negative oxygen-reduction potential (antioxidant) create the perfect natural water in the Hunza Valley where there are no cancers and people generally live 120 to 140 years!

Which foods are considered alkaline and which aren’t? Generally, vegetables, fruits and seeds are considered to be alkaline, whilst meats, beans, nuts and grains are acidic. So, an alkaline diet would be rich in vegetables and fruit with little meat consumption. Dairy, eggs and processed foods aren’t considered alkaline and would be avoided in this diet. A diet focused on plant-based ingredients is similar to the American Institute of Cancer Research (AICR) diet recommendations for lowering cancer risk – with red meat limited to no more than 18 oz. per week, and avoiding processed meat.

Today's dietary pattern is geared to make us acidic: Salivary α-amylase has a short-lived action. In fact, it is swallowed with chewed food and subsequently inactivated by extremely low gastric pH; amylase, on the other hand, has an optimal pH of around 7, and the pH of saliva is generally between 6.4 and 7.0.

Chewing of Paneer may be recommended: Patients with generalized chronic periodontitis had more acidic pH as compared with the control group. Chewing paneer-like cheese abolishes the fall in salivary pH caused by sugar consumption and may be recommended as a protective food in pediatric diet counselling.

Salivary pH normal range of 6.2-7.6 with 6.7 being the average.

Inputs Courtesy: ENT Doctor with 41 years of experience preferring to remain anonymous.


  1., well studied presentation. Congratulations


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