Time and time again we’ve reinforced the idea in our heads that candy is bad for your teeth, plain and simple. What if we told you it’s not candy that causes cavities? Surprisingly, it’s not the sugar intake that’s directly harming your teeth. In fact, the mutual bacteria inside your mouth naturally consumes sugar. However, the byproduct of that is acid, which bacteria excretes once they break down the sugar. Acid is the true culprit that eats away at your enamel and leads to cavities or worse.
We’re not saying candy is without fault, but it isn’t the leading cause of tooth decay. You’re in for a surprise as we talk about some foods and drinks you didn’t know are damaging your teeth.
Avoid Starchy Foods
There comes a time you’ve felt nauseated. If you didn’t know, saltine crackers are the perfect snack during these times, as they are one of few foods that go down without upsetting the stomach. What you didn’t know is that saltine crackers are worse for your teeth than candy. Saltines are high in processed starch, increasing the glycemic index (blood glucose level) and risking cavities. The better way to fight nausea is to consume plenty of broths and soups, which provide nutrients and keeps you hydrated.
This next one may require you to cut ties with your favorite childhood snack. Goldfish, the snack that smiles back, is ever bothersome when they get stuck between your teeth. It becomes a feasting ground for bacteria to do their job, and you now know what happens when they’re breaking down starch. If you’re a parent, you may have to explain to your child why you’re suddenly packing their lunch with healthy fruits and vegetables, or even dark chocolate.
Not All Fruits are Great for Your Teeth
Speaking of fruits, there are some that are even worse than candy for your teeth. Let’s start with dried fruits, the most common being banana chips, raisins, and peaches. What makes them so harmful for your teeth is how they’re processed. Dried fruits have all the water inside them removed, sharply raising its concentration of natural sugars. Dried fruits compare to sticky caramels, and cling to your teeth like gumdrops.
Another fruit to be wary of is grapefruit. While many of us falsely believe grapefruit to be a healthy breakfast dish, in all realities it’s acidity starts dissolving your enamel the moment it touches your teeth. You may not eat lemons or limes directly, but their acidity is along the same lines as grapefruits. Other acidic fruits to be cautious of includes pomegranates, grapes, apples and pineapples.
Be Careful of What You Drink
Hydrating yourself is just as important as any snack or meal, but there are some drinks that are just not good for your teeth.
Many of us wake up to coffee but don’t realize that coffee is what’s causing those nasty yellow stains to appear on the surface of your teeth. Coffee is full of tannic acids that hit your teeth directly, unlike sugary foods and drinks. It quickly weakens your enamel and causes sensitive teeth the rest of the day. Coffee is a big hitter against your teeth, it’s time to find other ways to wake up in the morning.
Diet sodas are on a different page than coffee. Diet sodas are supposed to be healthier than regular sodas, but that isn’t the case. Soda giants cut the sugar concentration inside a soda can and make up for it by adding phosphoric acid. Phosphoric acid delivers a tang to the soft drink while also dissolving the enamel protecting your Every living being on this planet needs water to survive teeth.
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