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    • 21 SEP 12
    • 0
    What are acidic foods?

    What are acidic foods?

    It is the action of acids on tooth enamel that, over time, causes erosion which leads to dental cavities. Acids are produced as the normal bacteria in the mouth digest left-over sugars from food and drink. Or acids can be delivered directly in the foods and drinks we choose.

    The pH of foods

    Foods with a high pH are not acidic, and may even play a protective role when it comes to tooth decay. These food include: avocados, bananas, broccoli, cheese, eggs, lean meat, nuts, oatmeal and whole grains, vegetables. See table below for more.
    Foods with low pH include: grapefruits, lemons, tomatoes and tomato products, wine, coffee and pickled foods (due to vinegar). Be aware of chewy sour sweets, for they are sugary and their sourness comes from acidic flavours, and their sticky residue means they remain in contact with your teeth. For more see the below table.

    Should I avoid acidic foods?

    It is not that these are ‘bad’ foods that should be avoided. In fact if you eat acidic foods with foods that have a high pH, the effect of the acid can be neutralised, for example: pasta with tomato-based sauce, cheese with pickles or wine. Another recommendation is to drink plenty of water to help rinse acids, and other food debris, away.


    Food and drinks

    lower in acidity

    Food and drinks

    higher acidity


    Melons, pawpaw, mangos, bananas

    Apples, raspberries, plums, cherries, oranges, peaches, pears, pineapple, tomatoes, lemons


    Vegetables, soups

    Pickled vegetables

    Protein & Dairy

    Meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, dairy foods, goat, soy

    Parmesan cheese, processed cheese


    Crackers, pasta, brown rice, wild rice, grainy bread

    White rice, white bread


    Yogurt based, soy

    Salad dressings, vinegar


    Milk, spring water, soda water, tap water, herbal tea

    Soft drinks (including sports and diet drinks), wine, fruit drinks, cordial, tea, coffee


    Honey, raw sugar

    Artificial sweeteners


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