Some of the most normal foods could be absolutely awful for your pearly whites and gums. We caught up with top dentists to see which foods they steer clear of—and some are pretty surprising.
Put down that bowl of microwave popcorn, friends. “Countless number of people come in with cracked teeth from eating half-popped popcorn kernels, not to mention the sneaky husk,” says Jonathan Neman, DDS, a dentist in New York City “Popcorn husk is notorious for finding its way in between teeth and causing gum pain, too.” We’re depressed by this news since popcorn is one of the healthiest snacks out there!
As tasty as those dried pineapples are and no matter how much you love that fiber boost from prunes, dried fruit is a disaster for teeth. “Not only are the sugars concentrated, but they are very sticky and sit into the grooves of your molars causing cavities,” explains Dr. Neman.
“Energy drinks are super acidic, and they have low pH and high sugar content. I’ve seen a rise in amounts of decay among college students who consume this in excess to stay up all night, whether studying or partying,” shares Dr. Marashi. “It coats all the teeth and therefore affects all of them equally. You’ll end up with a mouth full of cavities!”
They may be everyone’s favorite movie snack, but they’re far from healthy. “Raisinets are the devil!” says Dr. Marashi. “It’s surprising, but chocolate alone is less harmful than raisins. The sugar content is higher and the sticky aspect of raisins get stuck in the groves of your teeth. The chocolate is just kerosene for the fire!”
Sweet coffee drinks
Get ready to try our list of calorie-free coffee hacks, because those venti cups with extra pumps of the sweet stuff are your worst dental nightmare. “Constant exposure to the milk and sugar over the course of an hour or more make it difficult for the saliva to combat against the sugars and acids produced by the bacteria in our mouths,” Dr. Neman says. “Saliva is the great protector of our teeth, and with the constant sugar attacks from taking sips of sugary drinks, over time the salivary glands fail to keep up.”