5 Foods that Stain Your Teeth

Maintaining a perfectly white smile is a lot of hard work. Brushing, flossing, rinsing, teeth whitening, and regular dental visits are all a must to keep your pearly whites, well, white. Those options are a huge help in getting your teeth back to being white but they’re all reactive actions. Toothpaste that whitens and whitening treatments do nothing to prevent your teeth from being stained in the first place. It’s time to take matters into your own hands and be proactive about maintaining your beautiful white smile. So what can you do? Well, what you eat and drink has a lot to do with the color of your teeth. Take a look below at five common foods and drinks that are staining your teeth and consume them in moderation to avoid stains.

Coffee and Tea

You knew it was coming; the drinks that allow us to get up each morning and take on the day are also main culprits of teeth staining. Not only do these delicious beverages have high acidity levels that erode tooth enamel, which allows color to seep into teeth, but they also have tannins. Tannins are naturally occurring compounds, which allow stains to stubbornly stick and discolor your teeth. Moderation, adding milk to your drink, and sticking to the lighter colored varieties will help.

Red Pasta Sauce

The containers you store pasta sauce in and the shirts you’ve accidentally splattered while eating spaghetti still have red spots on them. Coincidence? Not likely. Red pasta sauce can stain your teeth the same way it can stain your containers and shirts. The high acidity levels found in tomatoes wear down your enamel and allow that red hue to cling and discolor your teeth.


The bubbly beverage you drink when you go out or lounge around home is not your smile’s friend. The high acidity levels found in soda wears down the enamel on your teeth allowing other foods the opportunity to stain more effectively. The dye found in sodas also has the effect of staining your teeth after the enamel wears down. It’s best to stay away from drinking soda on a regular basis.


Berries have been staining fingers and clothes for centuries. The dark pigments found in berries coupled with their acidity levels lead to the wear down of enamel and a natural dyeing of your teeth. Rinsing your mouth with water after enjoying those refreshing berries can help stave off discoloration by rinsing the pigmented juices away from your teeth.


Lovers of Indian and international food are in for a sad awakening. This spice’s deep yellow and orange pigmentations are a cause of yellowing teeth around the world. Limiting your diet of this high staining spice and rinsing after consumption can help reduce the staining factor and keep your teeth white.

We all eat and drink foods and beverages that discolor our teeth. With proper care and some moderation of the more potently staining foods however, we can prevent our teeth from needing whitening treatments on a regular basis. Talk with your dentist today for more tips on keeping your teeth white and which foods are safe for those pearly whites.