Anthropologists discover new research use for dental plaque: Examining diets of ancient peoples

While we may brush and floss tirelessly and our dentists may scrape and pick at our teeth to minimize the formation of plaque known as tartar or dental calculus, anthropologists may be rejoicing at the fact that past civilizations were not so careful with dental hygiene. Researchers have discovered that particles of plaque removed from teeth of ancient populations may provide clues about their diets.