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Is Food Particle Size A Criterion For The Initiation Of Swallowing?

P. Lucas, D. A. Luke
Published 1986 · Medicine

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A small study on fifteen subjects found that brazil nut particles always broke down much more rapidly per chew than raw carrot particles. Both foods were swallowed, on average, after similar numbers of chews. However, a relationship was found which suggested that subjects that swallowed after few chews took less for carrots than brazils and vice versa for those that took more chews. An extended study with carrot showed a significant correlation between the rate of size breakdown and the number of chews required for swallowing in dentate subjects (r = 0.69) but not in full denture wearers. The whole sample (n = 79 including six wearers of partial dentures) gave a significant correlation of r = 0.65. It is concluded that some consideration of the physical properties (texture) of foods is necessary before results from this type of study can be interpreted as relevant or not for dentistry.
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