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Go Ahead, Let Your Kids Eat Their Boogers

Photograph by Twenty20

If you're eating anything other than boogers at the moment, you might want to stop for a sec because the possibility of gagging is rather high ... just like when you see your kid plopping a crusty green piece of snot into their mouth like it’s some kind of rare and valuable delicacy to be enjoyed only when no one is watching.

Gross, right?

Well, turns out that eating boogers is good for your kids and you. Say what?! Yep, a study found that eating mucus (AKA snot) is good for your teeth.

You see, mucus has this stuff in it called salivary mucins which, when ingested, helps form a barrier around teeth that defends them from cavity-causing bacteria. It’s like you're coating your teeth with slimy booger stuff that makes bad corrosive bacteria just slide right off them.

This booger barrier is so promising in oral care that researchers are looking into creating chewing gum or toothpaste out of synthetic mucus. Ew.

Oh, and there's also evidence that mucus could be used to protect against respiratory infection, stomach ulcers and HIV.

As strange as this all sounds, it makes sense when you think about it. Mucus in the body acts to protect and lubricate, which is exactly what researchers are saying it can do for teeth.

So now what? Are we supposed to let our kids pick their noses and go to town on boogie appetizers before every meal?

According to Austrian lung specialist Friedrich Bischinger, not only should we stop shaming our kids for eating the gooey stuff, we should be encouraging them to do so. (Um, I don't think so.)

“And eating the dry remains of what you pull out is a great way of strengthening the body’s immune system. Medically it makes great sense and is a perfectly natural thing to do,” he said in a statement.

Unfortunately, the social stigma around eating your boogers is snot gonna go away anytime soon.

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