Teeth Friendly Foods

Your Teeth: Dental Health and Your Diet

It’s no secret that diet impacts every part of our lives.  But have you ever considered how your diet affects your smile?  Having a beautiful smile results from more than dental work done, brush and floss, and see a dentist often.  Your smile is also a reflection of what you eat (or don’t).  So, what foods should you include or avoid to keep your teeth picture-ready?  You might be surprised.

Foods and Drinks that Affect Your Teeth

Teeth Friendly FoodsSugar-filled Drinks

Energy drinks, soda, sports drinks, and powder-based drinks are bad.  Not only are they cavity-causing, but they are also known for wearing down the enamel on your teeth.  Likewise, they dry out your mouth.  Just because a container says it is 100% juice doesn’t mean it is good for your teeth.  Many juices cause tooth damage due to the amount of natural sugar and acids. Watch out for are grape, orange, pineapple, lemon, lime, tomato, and grapefruit juices.  Swap these drinks for water (sparkling or coconut).  When you do have one of the drinks on the “not recommended list” use a straw to avoid the drink’s contact with your teeth.

Wine, Coffee, and Tea

The tannins in these products can lead to staining and discoloration.  In addition, since these drinks are naturally acidic, they affect the teeth’s enamel.  Another problem with coffee is halitosis (bad breath) due to its strong smell.  Regarding wine, wait at least 30 minutes after drinking it before you brush your teeth.  Brushing immediately after consumption pushes the tannins deeper into your teeth.

Pickles, Vinegar, and Tomatoes

Foods packed in vinegar or dishes where vinegar is a key component are harsh on your teeth.  Yes, certain vinegars may have positive effects on your health.  However, be intentional when consuming them.  If you have foods high in vinegar, pair them (or at least follow them) with foods such as cheese, apples, leafy greens, eggs, and yogurt.  Tomatoes can also damage teeth due to their natural acid as well as a potential discoloring agent.

Dried Fruit and Granola Bars

While there are some health benefits to these easy breakfast or snack items, they are not the best choice for your teeth.  Because of the amount of natural (and added) sugar, as well as their being easily trapped between your teeth, these foods cause cavities.

High Carb Foods

Not only avoid foods like bread, white rice, pasta, chips, cakes, cookies, and other desserts if your goal is to have a healthy lifestyle, but they are also bad for your teeth.  They contain high amounts of sugar.


Popcorn is a great low-carb snack.  But it can cause dental problems if you don’t brush and floss after eating it.  Failing to brush and floss can result in husks being trapped in between teeth and the gums, causing damage and even abscesses.
Keep in mind that due to specific dental concerns such as halitosis, periodontal disease, etc., you may need to adjust this list to work for yourself.  But some actions will benefit your dental health- no matter what other issues you deal with.
Our dentists are here to help you.  Talk to your dentist during your next visit to Crosstown Dental Group Hershey and learn more about what you can do to keep your smile looking great.