July 30, 2012

Want White Teeth? Food and Drinks to Avoid

Contrary to popular belief, a lot of dentists will actually tell you that the sign of really healthy teeth is that they aren't blindingly white; that they actually have a bit of a duller hue to them. OK, but that certainly doesn't mean that yellow teeth that are filled with food stains are the look to go for!

In between dental visits for annual cleanings, aside from brushing and flossing regularly, there is another proactive thing that you can do to keep your teeth as white as possible: You can avoid certain foods and drinks that actually stain the enamel.

Many people already know that coffee, tea and wine are three liquids that can do a real number on their teeth, but you might be surprised to know that there are some other things that are on the list as well. Here are five other edible items to avoid if you want to have a beautiful smile that's not "yellow dingy" but "pearly white".

Dark sodas. Yeah, the more studying that people do, the more they are discovering that while the sensation of soda may be like a "party in your mouth", the after-effects aren't as much fun. Soda is full of sugar, which already puts your teeth in a vulnerable position; plus it packs on the calories. Also, if it's a dark color like Coke or Pepsi, it can also stain your teeth over time.

Tomato sauce. Who doesn't like a slice of pizza or a big bowl of pasta with some tomato sauce in it from time to time? However, it can definitely darken your teeth color so, put a protective film over it by eating some broccoli, cabbage or spinach, first.

Popsicles and slushies. Sure, they're cold and delicious, but here's the general rule with these two things: If it stains your tongue, it has the full potential of being able to stain your teeth as well (a good thing to keep in mind when it comes to candy and gum too!).

Cranberry juice. For a lot of reasons, cranberry juice (especially pure cranberry juice) is great for the body because it helps to purify for the liver and kidneys of toxins. However, due to its dark color and high acidic content, it can also turn your teeth yellow over time, so be sure to brush thoroughly after having a glass of it.

Blueberries. When it comes to foods that are high in antioxidants, you may have some seen some material that encourages you to "check out the reviews here" when it comes to the many health benefits of blueberries. Studies show that they help to prevent urinary tract infections, preserve our vision and even relief constipation. So, if you love them, feel free to have a bowl. Just remember to thoroughly rinse your mouth out with water afterwards. The deep blue hue tends to stay on your teeth if you don't.

Curry. For seasoning foods, curry is divine. For yellowing teeth, it is notorious. It's a pretty potent powder and it can stay with you for longer than your favorite Indian meal, so if you're going to have some with your lunch or dinner, make sure to bring your toothbrush along.

Soy Sauce. Among some dentists, the rule of thumb is this: If it can stain your clothes or your carpet, then there's a great chance that it will stain your teeth. Soy sauce would definitely fall into the "fabric staining" category, so after dining on some Chinese food, don't sit too long without giving your teeth the attention (brushing, flossing or at least rinsing with mouthwash) that it deserves.

(Guest Post by Carol)

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