Lemons floating in water

6 Healthy Foods That Are Surprisingly Bad for your Teeth

Jan 17, 2020

It’s the beginning of the year and you might have health and fitness on your mind. If you made a resolution for your family to start eating healthier, that’s great. After all, a healthy diet plays an important part in the health of your teeth! But did you know that there are healthy foods that actually harm your teeth? Here are our top six:

  1. Citrus: Oranges, grapefruit, and lemons are a healthy refreshing summer snack, packed full of vitamin C. This vitamin helps maintain the collagen in your gums. But don’t overdo these tasty fruits. If your child is eating multiple oranges a day or drinks water with lemon in it – the acid in these citrus fruits can soften and erode their enamel. Lemons and limes are especially harsh, as are any citrus fruit juice with these in them. Quick fix: After snacking on citrus, chug a tall glass of water. 

  2. Almonds: Nuts are a quick and healthy snack to pack in your kid’s lunch boxes or keep in the car for when you’re on the go. But let’s talk almonds. This delicious and healthy nut is high in vitamin E and full of healthy fats. But when it comes to your teeth, they are extremely hard. These nuts can create a kind of wedge when your child bites down, and their teeth can actually fracture as a result.​ Quick fix: Don’t give your child whole almonds, but instead buy them in slivers.

  3. Dried fruit: While dried fruit can be healthy, many options have a significant amount of added sugar. As you know, sugar leads to tooth decay. On top of that, dried fruit is chewy and sticky, so it will find its way into those tiny nooks and crannies and wreak havoc on your child’s teeth.​ Quick fix: dehydrate your own fruit, read your labors carefully, or choose fresh fruit instead

  4. Pickles: pickles are a delicious sandwich topper low in calories and big on flavor. But they can be problematic for your children’s teeth. Like citrus, pickled foods have a very high acid content because of the vinegar. This can de-mineralize teeth. ​Quick Fix: After munching on a pickle, eat some cheese. It’s high in calcium and can help neutralize some of the acids on your teeth.​

  5. Peanut butter: Almost every kid loves a pb&j. But there’s an unfortunate downside to this protein-rich snack. It’s sticky and stays in contact with the teeth for a long time. Plus, most varieties are packed with sugar. Not a winning combo. Quick fix: Read your labels and buy natural brands with no added sugar.​

  6. Gummy Vitamins: ok, we know this isn’t a food. Chewable vitamins may have nutrients your children need to stay healthy, but when it comes in a sticky sugary form, they’re just as harmful to their chewy candy. These gummies stick to teeth, giving cavity-causing bacteria more time to do some damage. Quick fix: Give your child their vitamins in pill form. Or, find a sugar-free chewable option.

The next time you grab any of these foods for your kid’s snack, we hope you’ll think twice. As always, if you are concerned about the health of your child’s teeth, don’t hesitate to contact us!

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