Malic acid is a natural compound made by animals, humans, and plants. It is the source of the tart taste of apples and pears. Malic acid has been used to ease dry mouth. It is most often used as a spray, but it can be taken as a pill or powder.
There aren’t any advised doses for malic acid.
What Research Shows
May Be Effective
Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.
It is likely safe to use malic acid for a short time. Not enough studies have been done to say whether it is safe to use for a long period or in large amounts by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Talk to your doctor about any supplements or therapy you would like to use. Some can interfere with treatment or make conditions worse, such as:
A1. Gómez-Moreno G, Auilar-Salvatierra A, et al. The efficacy of topical sialagogue spray containing 1% malic acid in patients with antidepressant-induced dry mouth: a double-blind, randomized clinical trial. Depress Anxiety. 2013;30(7):137-142.
A2. Gómez-Moreno G, Guardia J, et al. Effectiveness of malic acid 1% in patients with xerostomia induced by antihypertensive drugs. Med Oral Patol Oral Cir Bucal. 2013 Jan 1;18(1):e49-55.
A3. Gómez-Moreno G, Cabrera-Ayala M, et al. Evaluation of the efficacy of a topical sialogogue spray containing malic acid 1% in elderly people with xerostomia: a double-blind, randomized clinical trial. Gerodontology. 2014 Dec;31(4):274-280.
A4. Gil-Montoya JA, Silvestre FJ, et al. Treatment of xerostomia and hyposalivation in the elderly: A systematic review. Med Oral Patol Oral Cir Bucal. 2016 May 1;21(3):e355-366.
A5. Niklander S, Fuentes F, et al. Impact of 1% malic acid spray on the oral health-related quality of life in patients with xerostomia. J Oral Sci. 2018;60(2):278-284.
Last reviewed March 2020 by EBSCO NAT Review Board Eric Hurwitz, DC
Last Updated: 6/29/2020
EBSCO Information Services is fully accredited by URAC. URAC is an independent, nonprofit health care accrediting organization dedicated to promoting health care quality through accreditation, certification and commendation.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
To send comments or feedback to our Editorial Team regarding the content please email us at email@example.com. Our Health Library Support team will respond to your email request within 2 business days.