Surprising foods that harm oral health

By - Bad Breath Expert

SUMMARY: Sugary snacks are obvious culprits for tooth decay, but keep these hidden dangers in mind when choosing substitutes.

Posted: January 15, 2015

Everyone knows that avoiding candy and soda is key to good oral health, but even seemingly healthier foods can cause bad breath and stained or broken teeth. Cutting sugar out of your diet is a great start to keeping your mouth happy, but if you want to go the extra mile for your smile, keep these hidden dangers in mind as well:

Crunch with care 
An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but this fruit could send people with weak teeth to the dentist instead. Any crunchy food can do damage to chipped chompers, but biting into an apple's tough skin can be particularly troublesome. Rather than skipping these healthy treats altogether, just take a bit more time eating them. Any time you're eating food that demands a hard bite, cut it into smaller pieces to let your molars do the hard work.

Don't let starch linger 
Just as fruit can sometimes be harder on your teeth than you'd think, so can vegetables. Potatoes in particular are a major cause of tooth decay. The bacteria in your mouth that thrive on sugar also like to feast on starches, which potatoes are chock full of. And while a sip of soda does its damage and then is gone, the texture of potatoes makes it easy for them to stick to the crevices of your teeth, providing an all-day meal for bacteria. Any food with a gummy texture can cause similar results, from raisins to crackers, so make sure you give your teeth a thorough brushing after enjoying any of them.

Be afraid of the dark 
Coffee is notorious for its ability to stain teeth, and many of its fans need teeth whitening down the line. The acid in coffee can wear down tooth enamel while its dark color sinks in. However, it's far from the only food that packs the one-two punch of acidity and dark coloration. While not as damaging as coffee, the dark pigments in black teas can also stain teeth, though lighter green and white teas aren't as bad for your teeth.

Pasta sauce is another dark, acidic food that's much more dangerous. Since pasta sauce is likely to cling to your teeth longer than coffee or tea, it gives the acid in the tomatoes time to wear down your enamel while the red coloring does its damage. Fortunately, drinking water with your meal will help keep the acids from spending too much time in your mouth.

Don't get sugar rushed
When it comes to enamel-eating acids, none is worse than citric acid, meaning apples aren't the only fruit to watch out for. Of course, if you're keeping up your oral hygiene routine, the benefits of fruit far outweigh its potential downsides, but it's best to be vigilant. The real danger comes in the form of fruit drinks. Most store-bought juices are packed with sugar, which combines withnatural acid to wear down enamel and give bacteria room to grow. Avoid bottled juices when you can and don't forget to brush after eating acidic fruits.

Win $100 in Products!   Enter Here
gum disease