In Houston, we know purple nutsedge as a noxious weed. If
you garden, it’s possible this sedge has caused significant frustration and
proven resistant to nearly all control methods. If you have encountered purple
nutsedge, you are probably not very fond of it.
However, for millennia, in cultures throughout the world,
the purple nutsedge has been used as both a food source and medicine. Nutsedge
has traditionally been used as an anti-inflammatory, a muscle relaxant, and a fever
reducer, but a new analysis of 2,000 year old skeletons from a burial site in Central
Sudan show it may help prevent cavities as well.
Researchers at the burial site noticed that less than one
percent of the remains were impacted by signs of tooth decay. They now attribute
this to bacterial inhibiting compounds found in the tubers of the purple
nutsedge – food for thought the next time you’re battling this weed in your own
We don’t recommend eating the tubers of purple nutsedge –
they are infamously bitter and unpleasant. Instead, we suggest you brush after
every meal and snack, floss at least once a day, and visit Houston dentist Dr.
Scott Young every six months for professional
cleanings and examinations
. While not the culinary adventure of ancient
cavity prevention techniques, modern dentistry offers a more comfortable,
pleasant, and effective approach to keeping teeth healthy and strong for a