Teeth Staining Foods You Should Avoid for a Bright Smile

yellow teethEverybody wants a bright smile. It’s the first feature others see and has an impact on our self-image. But keeping your teeth white and shiny isn’t so easy if you’re eating the wrong foods.

There are a few things you should try to avoid when considering your smile and protecting your teeth. Teeth staining foods can damage enamel the color can literally stick to your teeth.

Here’s a list of those foods to be aware of so you can keep your teeth as bright as your smile.


The best thing you can do for your teeth is to drink plenty of water. This will help to keep your teeth rinsed and of course, it’s a healthy way to hydrate.

If you’re not drinking water, there are drinks that won’t stain but take a look at these beverages that are staining your teeth.


Coffee and tea are some of the most common teeth staining foods because they’re full of tannins and they’re very acidic.

Tannins lead to staining and discoloration. Acid alters the pH balance in your mouth. This is especially damaging if you eat acidic foods afterward.

Try dosing your coffee with a splash of milk or cream (avoid the sugary kind) and drink plenty of water while you enjoy the beverage. Black coffee and tea are especially responsible for discoloration. You can substitute with green or white tea, which are lower in tannins.


Red wine to be most specific is very acidic and full of tannins. It’s also a teeth staining food in itself. The red color combined with the tannins binding to your teeth can cause immediate discoloration.

White wine is especially acidic which makes your teeth more likely to absorb the stains from whatever you may be pairing with.

Drink plenty of water when you drink wine or eat cheese. The water will rinse your teeth while the cheese actually helps to fight cavities and raises the pH level in your mouth.


Carbonated beverages and soda drinks are extremely acidic.

Acids break down the chemical balance in your mouth allowing dark colors to stick in the pores of your teeth. Sugars don’t help the matter.

Try to avoid sipping sodas throughout the day and replace them with flavored water.


Have you ever noticed how difficult stains are to remove from your clothes when you spill sauces or dressings? These yummy treats are also staining your teeth.


Curry is a spice that is often used in exotic dishes and Indian food. As spicy and delicious this deep orange spice is, it’s also at the top of the list of teeth staining foods. The deep, rich pigment of the spice will yellow your teeth over time.

Try mixing fresh fruits and vegetables that fight stains in your curry dishes.

Balsamic Vinegar

Even though balsamic vinegar is classified as a healthy choice for salad dressing and other recipes, it can also damage your teeth.

It sticks to your teeth and wears away at the enamel if it’s not brushed away quickly. This can cause discoloration and future cavities.

Because balsamic can be enjoyed with salads, you can rest easy when you’re splashing it on lettuce and spinach, which will counteract the effects of the vinegar.

Tomato Sauce

Tomato sauce or spaghetti sauce is highly saturated with color. Besides that, it’s also highly acidic. This combination is a recipe for disaster when you’re trying to keep your teeth looking pearly white.

Try eating a leafy salad or broccoli or kale, something green, before enjoying your pasta. It will help protect your teeth from the acid and discoloration.


We all know fruits are supposed to be good for our bodies, but there are few to watch out for if you’re concerned about your white teeth.


Blueberries, blackberries, pomegranates, even strawberries are discoloring your teeth if you’re consuming them often and not brushing immediately afterward.

Berries contain chromogens, extremely vivid pigments. These pigments stick to your teeth and stain them.

Also, watch out for berry juices.


Because of its high acidity, citrus isn’t great for your teeth. The color can erode your enamel which could expose the dentin under your enamel. This is a yellow-hued tissue in your teeth.

Drink plenty of water when you’re eating citrus and brush as soon as you can to avoid its damaging effects.


Sugar is delicious. And bad for your teeth. It’s not at the top of the list for teeth staining foods because it may not directly discolor your teeth.

Besides the potential for cavities, sugar sticks to your teeth which is a great place for bacteria to live. When bacteria feed on the sugars stuck to your teeth, they release acids that not only lead to tooth decay but also expose the discoloration in your teeth from eating other foods that cause damage.

Brush your teeth as soon as you can after consuming sugary foods.

When the Damage is Done from Teeth Staining Foods

Good foods, especially when they’re good for you, are difficult to avoid altogether. You might like to enjoy a healthy berry or a glass of wine once in a while. But you shouldn’t have to pay for it eternally.

There are home teeth whitening techniques and special kinds of toothpaste and other teeth whitening products available on the market today. But you should always consult your dentist before using these methods. Tooth enamel can be damaged if these products are used incorrectly.

Your dentist can provide teeth whitening for you. It’s a painless and simple procedure that won’t damage your teeth.

Contact us for a teeth whitening appointment and get your beautiful, bright smile back in no time.