How to Eat for Healthier Teeth

healthy salad with greens and tuna

You know that what you eat affects your waistline. But did you know that the foods you put into your mouth also have lasting effects on your teeth? We’ve put together a list of foods that you should avoid and those you should continue to snack on.

First up: foods and drinks you should definitely avoid.

Carbonated Drinks

Acid is one of the worst things for your teeth, and carbonated sodas, even diet sodas, are incredibly acidic. This acid weakens tooth enamel while also drying out your mouth and reducing saliva. Saliva production is important because it can help to neutralize and wash away acids produced when food is broken down by bacteria in the mouth. Dark-colored sodas can also stain your teeth. If you need to indulge, try drinking your carbonated beverage through a straw to reduce contact with your teeth.


We all know that candy is bad for your teeth. Whether it’s chewy or hard candy, the sugar and acid in candy wears away at your enamel, which can cause cavities. Another problem is that the candy can get stuck between your teeth which can lead to plaque buildup. If you want something sweet, dark chocolate is soft on your teeth and can more easily be washed away with water.

Potato Chips & Popcorn

It’s hard to resist popcorn and potato chips, but you should probably think twice before you reach for a bag at the grocery store. Chip and popcorn particles can get stuck between your teeth, and these particles feed bacteria that cause tooth decay. Continued snacking can even cause acid production to linger even longer. Be sure to floss and rinse your mouth out after you eat potato chips and popcorn.

Up next are foods you should reach for when you’re at the grocery store.


From peanuts to almonds, nuts are a great snack for your teeth. Peanuts are a great source of calcium and vitamin D; almonds contain calcium; cashews stimulate saliva; and walnuts have fiber, folic acid, iron, magnesium, iron, zinc, and more.

Leafy Greens

You know that leafy greens are good for you, but they’re also great for your teeth. Full of vitamins and minerals, leafy greens like kale and spinach are high in calcium, which helps build tooth enamel. They also contain folic acid, which has numerous health benefits, such as treating gum disease in pregnant women.


Full of fiber and vitamin A, raw carrots can also help increase saliva production in your mouth. This reduces the risk of cavities by fighting off bacteria and rinse away food particles.


Though it can be high in fat in large quantities, cheese contains proteins like casein that can act as a buffer against bacteria and acids that can cause tooth decay.

At Ashley Laird, DDS, we’re dedicated to providing you with the best care. Call us to make an appointment for a cleaning today!

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