You don’t need a fancy tooth whitening kit to remove stains from your teeth. You can do it at home without the expense or exposure to high levels of peroxide and other harsh, scary ingredients, which is why the secret to white teeth may be in your fridge.

Two Ways to Remove Stains Naturally

When you want your smile to be naturally white, there’s no reason to skip over the DIY remedies. However, as with any whitening process, if you experience tooth sensitivity, be sure to stop the method you’re using.

Orange Peel

All citrus fruits, including lemon, could help remove stains from your teeth, but oranges cause the least amount of enamel damage.

Rub the inside of a piece of orange peel (the white side) all over your teeth. Since you’ll be putting the peel in your mouth instead of just tearing it off and discarding it, choose organic oranges for this.

Only use this method a couple of times per week, at the most, to avoid damaging your enamel. Rinse with water after you’re done to neutralize the acid, but don’t brush your teeth for about 30 minutes.

For more uses for those orange peels, check out The Sprouting Seed’s blog post.

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Strawberries and Baking Soda

Mix up a paste of one strawberry (pureed) and a ½ teaspoon of baking soda. Use your toothbrush to spread it over your teeth and then leave the mixture there for five minutes (you may want to use a mouth guard to keep it in place and feel more comfortable while you wait). Rinse it out, brush your teeth, and floss to remove all the seeds. As with the orange peel method, only use this one a couple of times per week. You can use the orange peel or the strawberry paste every few days.

Style Craze has some other ways you may want to incorporate strawberries into your beauty routine.

Foods That Improve the Health of Your Teeth

Strawberries and Oranges Are Good on the Inside, Too

Don’t just use your strawberries and oranges on your teeth. Eat them for tooth health, too! Foods that contain a lot of vitamin C—citrus fruits, strawberries, red bell peppers, cabbage, etc—have been mentioned here as being great for your skin, but they’re also fantastic for your oral health, too. They promote the growth of collagen and all the connective tissues between your teeth and gums. Vitamin C strengthens your blood vessels and also reduces inflammation, which means vitamin-C rich foods could be helpful against gingivitis.

Raisins

As long as you’re not eating raisins with extra sugar, they can actually be good for your teeth. Their phytochemicals—especially oleanolic acids–can suppress bacterial growth in the mouth. For digestion’s sake (these are heavier, dense foods) and weight loss, don’t eat a lot of dried fruit, including raisins. However, it might not hurt to add raisins into your diet as part of an afternoon snack every now and then.

Crunchy Vegetables and Fruits

Crunchy fruits and vegetables can help scrub the plaque off of your teeth, so carrots, celery, kale, lettuce, cucumbers, apples, and pears (just to name a few) are great for tooth health. Any whole food that makes you chew a lot encourages more saliva production so your teeth get a good rinse, plus the food itself gives teeth a scrub down. So those salads you eat serve yet another purpose in addition to their nutritional value and beauty boosting benefits.

Leafy Greens

The two things teeth need most are phosphorus and calcium. You can find calcium in leafy greens (we’ll talk about phosphorus in a second). When you chew your greens, they also scrub your teeth to help get them squeaky clean. They’re good for you and your teeth from the moment you put them in your mouth.

Nuts and Seeds

As mentioned above, phosphorus is important for bone health, which means it’s important for your teeth. Eating nuts and seeds (especially pumpkin seeds and Brazil nuts) provides your body with that much needed mineral. Be sure to soak your nuts and seeds first for proper nutrition and utilization of all those nutrients inside.

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Cranberries

Cranberries are similar to raisins in the way they affect the teeth. Polyphenols here also prevent plaque from sticking to the teeth. Researchers from the University of Rochester Medical Center found that cranberries could hinder the formation of glucan, which is the beginning stage of plaque. Without the plaque, the harmful bacteria has nowhere to latch on and hang out to feed on sugar.

A New Way Whole Foods Beautify You

We all know that whole foods are the key to beauty, energy, and vitality. They’re also the key as to why the secret to white teeth may be in your fridge. Natural foods can beautify you from the inside out, but they can also be used on the outside, as treatments, to help make you even more gorgeous and confident. From a whiter smile to glowing skin, you can almost always turn to your refrigerator for the solution.

 

New York Times Bestselling Author, Nutritionist, Wellness and Beauty Expert