Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects


Allied Health

Document Type



In the Fall of 2014, research was conducted with 20 participants on the campus of Western Kentucky University. Participants were given two ounces of Coca Cola® to drink and the pH level in their mouth was tested one minute later. After waiting a minute, the participants were given a one ounce square of mild cheddar cheese to eat and the pH level was tested again one minute later. For further study, this project will be expanded to include more subjects as well as an increased exposure time to Coca Cola®. This research is conducted to help support that cheese can help increase the pH level in the oral cavity by reducing bacteria which in the long term could reduce decay. The cheese helps to provide a protective shield around the teeth that fights the release of acids. Cheese also increases the flow of saliva, which helps to keep the teeth cleansed, preventing bacteria from adhering to tooth surfaces. Also, the consumption of cheese also increases calcium and phosphorus levels, which helps reduce the acidity of dental biofilm.

Advisor(s) or Committee Chair

Dr. Lynn Austin


Dentistry | Medicine and Health Sciences | Oral Biology and Oral Pathology