5 Foods that are bad for your teeth

Jul 13, 2011 at 8:38 p.m. ET

Though you may know coffee and dark colored foods can stain teeth, you may not know that there are other foods that can damage the enamel on your teeth and put you at risk for tooth decay. Here are five foods that are bad for your teeth.

1. Refined bread products

Not a surprise that foods with little nutritional value to your body can also damage your teeth. The more a baked good is refined, the more likely it can stick to your teeth and get trapped in between your teeth.

2. Hard candy and chewy candy

Hard candy made with sugar (that you suck on) exposes your teeth to conditions that can produce acids which break down your tooth enamel. Chewy candy, like taffy, tends to stick to your teeth, also exposing them to a higher risk of decay.

3. Carbonated drinks

Though vegan-friendly sodas are fine for your diet, the acids and sugar in them are damaging to your teeth. In addition, they can also add extra empty calories to your diet, and, if they are dark in color, stain your teeth.

4. Pineapples, oranges, and other acidic fruit

Though considered good-for-your-body foods, highly acidic fruits can erode tooth enamel and lead to tooth decay. This doesn't mean you should eschew pineapple or citrus fruits, but eat them in moderation with a variety of other, less acidic fruits.

5. Tea, coffee, and dark colored juices

Tea, coffee, and 100 percent juices offer a bevy of antioxidants but their dark color can stain teeth with frequent exposure.

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