We know that fruit is incredibly healthy, but with some fruits containing higher amounts of natural sugars and acids, is fruit bad for your teeth? We’re uncovering how to enjoy the goodness of fruit without harming your teeth.
Is fruit bad for your teeth?
We all know that fruit offers a wide range of fantastic health benefits, seeing as it’s packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and a variety of nutrients required by our bodies to boost immunity, protect against diseases, and help keep our skin, hair and nails healthy.
However, as some fruits contain higher amounts of natural sugars and acids than others, you may be wondering whether fruit is bad for your teeth. Whether you like crunching down on an apple or tingling your taste buds with some pineapple, we’re exploring the impact of fruit on our teeth and how to enjoy the health benefits of fruit without affecting your oral health.
Fruit sugars and acid: What do they do to your teeth?
In addition to their vast array of health-boosting vitamins and minerals, fruits also contain natural sugars, as well as acid - both of which can have an impact on our teeth.
Sugar can linger on the surface of the teeth and contribute to the development of bacteria. This bacteria can cause the enamel - the protective layer of the tooth - to become worn, leaving your teeth more exposed to decay.
Meanwhile, the acid contained in fruits such as pineapples, grapes and oranges can also soften the enamel and lead to enamel erosion.
Signs of enamel erosion in teeth include:
- Increased sensitivity
- Rounded teeth
How to enjoy your fruit fix without affecting your teeth
So based on what we know about sugar and acid, is fruit bad for your teeth? The answer is, only if you consume too much of certain types of fruit. There are also simple ways to minimise the impact of sugar and acid on your teeth.
Choosing fruits that are low in acidity and sugar - like berries, peaches and apples - will provide you with plenty of your daily vitamins and antioxidants without impacting your teeth’s enamel. Meanwhile, fruits that are very sweet or very sour, such as pineapple or mango, are best enjoyed in moderation.
It’s also a good idea to rinse your mouth with water after eating sweet fruits, as this can help to remove the sugar left on the teeth’s surface.
Eating fruit vs. drinking fruit juice: Which is better for your teeth?
When it comes to eating or drinking your fruit intake, there’s no question that eating the whole fruit rather than drinking fruit juice is the best option for your teeth.
Whether fruit juice is pre-packaged or freshly-squeezed, it generally contains higher amounts of sugar and acid, while being lower in healthy fibre that fills you up and benefits your body.
When you do drink fruit juice, it’s a good idea to use a straw and rinse your mouth with water afterwards - this will help to neutralise PH levels in the mouth and dilute the leftover sugar.
Enjoy your fruit, protect your teeth
The simplest way to answer the question “is fruit bad for your teeth” is to take the approach of “everything in moderation”.
While the sugars and acids found in some types of fruit can have a negative effect on tooth enamel, there’s no doubt that fruit offers a huge variety of health benefits that make it a far better option than other sugary or processed foods.
Rather than cutting back on your fruit intake, simply make sure you’re balancing sweet or sour fruits with those that are lower in sugar and acid, while remembering to rinse your mouth with water to reduce the effects on your teeth.
For more advice about oral health and minimising your risk of tooth decay, contact us today