Foods to Eat & Avoid for White Teeth

If you are looking for a way to brighten your smile, you likely have some options right in your kitchen. Many foods can help whiten your teeth as well as improve your oral health, and some foods can do the opposite. Although munching on some carrots will not provide the same results as professional teeth whitening, choosing the right foods can help kick start a whiter smile.

How do foods help whiten your teeth naturally?

There are many foods and drinks that are known to stain your teeth, but avoiding them completely can be difficult. Luckily, there are several foods and drinks that are known to help combat tooth discoloration and keep your teeth white and bright! Foods can help whiten your teeth naturally by removing stains and preventing buildup that can give your teeth a yellowish tint.

Foods do this by increasing natural saliva flow which will help wash away bacteria that causes plaque to help maintain the brightness of your teeth. Other foods act as a scrubbing tool that over time can help reduce stains on teeth and some contain enzymes and proteins that can help breakdown both stains and plaque buildup to enhance your smile.

Which foods whiten your teeth?

While foods alone will likely not reverse severe damage, they can help promote and maintain good oral health and a bright smile. We are going to break down the top foods that can help whiten your teeth, that does not mean you should only eat these foods and avoid everything else, moderation is key. Here are some food that can help whiten your teeth:

This list might be surprising to some, as two extremely popular searches on Google are:

  • Do carrots stain teeth?
  • Do strawberries stain teeth?

In fact, both of these are actually foods that don’t stain your teeth, they will help whiten them.


This crispy fruit is great at removing plaque due to its fibrous properties. The crunch of an apple also works as a natural scrubber to help rid your teeth of stains and discoloration caused by plaque.


Raw cauliflower requires a lot of chewing which will cleanse your teeth removing them of bacteria and food residue to prevent plaque buildup. Similarly to apples, the rigorous chewing will manually scrub the teeth which can lift stains.


It may seem like strawberries would stain your teeth because of their bright color, but they are packed with a valuable enzyme, called malic acid. They can help whiten your teeth by working as an astringent for the surface of the teeth.


Not only yogurt but dairy products, in general, are great at keeping your enamel strong and less susceptible to erosion and plaque buildup. They can do this by neutralizing the pH in your mouth to decrease acidity.

Citrus Fruits

While citrus fruits are high in acidity, in moderation they can be incredibly beneficial for your teeth. The acidity will increase saliva flow that will wash away harmful bacteria and protect your enamel.


The crunchiness of raw celery and carrots offers many advantages to your oral health. They will help scrub and cleanse your teeth of unwanted food particles, discoloration, and bacteria.


Pineapple contains an enzyme, bromelain, which can break down proteins that are known to cause stains. Although sweet foods are typically associated with being bad for your teeth, pineapple can satisfy your sweet tooth and brighten your smile.


Walnuts, almonds, cashews, and other nuts are packed with nutrients that are great for your oral health. They also are harder to chew, and their natural abrasiveness can help remove stains and plaque.

What foods should I avoid for whiter teeth?

As previously stated, all foods are fine in moderation but overindulging in some can lead to dull, discolored teeth. It is good to be conscious of what can impact the brightness of your smile so you can choose some of the foods mentioned above over others with a potential negative impact. Let’s look at some of the key foods to avoid when whitening your teeth.

Sugary foods and drinks

For starters, foods that are high in sugar like candy, sports drinks, pop, and some cereals can increase the likelihood of cavities, plaque buildup, and enamel erosion.

Coffee, tea, and red wine

Although not necessarily foods, coffee, and tea are highly acidic and can weaken the enamel making your teeth more prone to stains. Especially since these are drinks that are typically sipped on, the teeth are exposed to acidity consistently for a longer time. Since the colors of coffee, tea, and red wine are so strong, they can easily influence discoloration.


This may come as a surprise, but berries, especially berries with dark pigments can stain your pearly whites. Another downfall is the seeds that come from berries can get stuck in your gums and in between teeth and hinder your oral health. Don’t stop eating your berries but make sure you give your teeth a good cleanse and floss after.

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