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You could be sabotaging your beautiful smile without even knowing it.
Here are the foods other than candy that dentists want you to avoid.
“Dried fruit is really like eating candy,” says Stephen J. Stefanac, DDS, professor of oral medicine and periodontics at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. “It has that stickiness and high sugar content.” That means that sugar gets stuck between your teeth—the perfect formula for cavities. Skip the dried variety and opt for fresh fruits instead.
Tomatoes are healthy, but they’re also acidic: “Eating tomato sauce with spaghetti doubles the damage to the enamel,” says Dr. Quartey. The acidic sauce can break down the enamel on teeth, and the carbs in pasta help feed cavity-causing bacteria. Dr. Quartey recommends pasta with cheese instead.
How can yogurt be bad for your teeth? If you have the plain kind, it’s not. After all, it contains probiotics and calcium, which are good for oral health. But many yogurts—even the Greek type—come with sweet fruit purees, adding a ton of sugar and acid to the mix. “You’re almost losing the benefits,” Dr. Rodriguez says. So add cut-up fresh fruit to plain yogurt instead.