Determining chewing efficiency using a solid test food and considering all phases of mastication

Ting Liu, Xinmiao Wang, Jianshe Chen, Hilbert W van der Glas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)
321 Downloads (Pure)


OBJECTIVES: Following chewing a solid food, the median particle size, X50, is determined after N chewing cycles, by curve-fitting of the particle size distribution. Reduction of X50 with N is traditionally followed from N ≥ 15-20 cycles when using the artificial test food Optosil®, because of initially unreliable values of X50. The aims of the study were (i) to enable testing at small N-values by using initial particles of appropriate size, shape and amount, and (ii) to compare measures of chewing ability, i.e. chewing efficiency (N needed to halve the initial particle size, N(1/2-Xo)) and chewing performance (X50 at a particular N-value, X50,N).

DESIGN: 8 subjects with a natural dentition chewed 4 types of samples of Optosil particles: (1) 8 cubes of 8 mm, border size relative to bin size (traditional test), (2) 9 half-cubes of 9.6 mm, mid-size; similar sample volume, (3) 4 half-cubes of 9.6 mm, and 2 half-cubes of 9.6 mm; reduced particle number and sample volume. All samples were tested with 4 N-values. Curve-fitting with a 2nd order polynomial function yielded log(X50)-log(N) relationships, after which N(1/2-Xo) and X50,N were obtained.

CONCLUSIONS: Reliable X50-values are obtained for all N-values when using half-cubes with a mid-size relative to bin sizes. By using 2 or 4 half-cubes, determination of N(1/2-Xo) or X50,N needs less chewing cycles than traditionally. Chewing efficiency is preferable over chewing performance because of a comparison of inter-subject chewing ability at the same stage of food comminution and constant intra-subject and inter-subject ratios between and within samples respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-77
Number of pages15
JournalArchives of Oral Biology
Early online date10 Apr 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018


  • Chewing efficiency
  • Chewing performance
  • Food comminution
  • Mastication
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Particle Size
  • Young Adult
  • Weight Loss
  • Surface Properties
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Mastication/physiology
  • Silicones
  • Food

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Dentistry
  • Cell Biology
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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