Wenyan Shi Chocolates and candies are supposed to be bad for your teeth. But, now people with a sweet-tooth have something to rejoice about because UCLA researchers may have managed to create a ‘tooth-friendly’ herbal lollipop that tastes just as sweet as…well sweets!

Dentistry UCLA professor and microbiologist Wenyan Shi discovered an ingredient from licorice roots that combats a main bacterium-causing tooth decay some years ago. Only recently, this ingredient has been infused in and has been made available in a sugar-free, orange-flavored, bacteria-killing lollipop!

The ingredient in the lollipop as can effectively kill Stretococcus mutans, a common bacterium that releases cavity-causing acids.

According to Shi, only 15 milligrams of licorice powder per lollipop eliminates 99.9 percent of this bacteria in the mouth within five to 10 minutes.

“This was particularly charming because in both Chinese and in Western cultures, people have been chewing it maybe for the taste, but it also has a lot of good health reasons. It stimulates saliva flows, has anti-bacterial properties and keeps bacteria from adhering to your teeth”, explained Professor Shi.

C3 Jian, a research and development company in the US is presently working with a candy manufacturer to bring these ‘healthy’ lollipops into commercial availability.

It is recommended to eat one lollipop after breakfast and another one before going to bed at night for a period of ten days. Then, in order to maintain the treatment’s effectiveness, one should eat a lollipop about 2-4 times a year.