Coffee stains reveal bone-healthy benefit for teeth

Coffee has come a long way. A daily cup of coffee used to be a guilty pleasure. Now it’s a healthy habit. Research shows it helps your brain, liver and heart, among other body parts.

But what about your teeth?

Most people will tell you coffee isn’t good for your teeth. It’s acidic and turns them brown. But most people are wrong…

Well, not entirely. Coffee is acidic. And it does dull your smile. But it helps your teeth in another way…

Drinking coffee can prevent bone loss in your jaw and keep your teeth from falling out.

Researchers from the University of Maryland School of Dentistry recently published an article reviewing the health benefits of coffee in the journal General Dentistry — and much to the chagrin of bone doctors (and a few dentists) everywhere — they dashed a long held belief: that coffee was believed to cause bone loss.

In fact, the latest evidence suggests otherwise…

A 2016 study published in the journal PLoS One found that post-menopausal women who drank the most coffee had better bone density than post-menopausal women who drank the least coffee.

Now, bone loss in the jaw, like most bone loss, is usually caused by osteoporosis… an issue that primarily affects post-menopausal women. When you lose bone density in your jaw, your teeth may become loose and eventually fall out. That’s because your jaw anchors your teeth into your mouth.

So if coffee can help post-menopausal women keep their bones intact, it’s a big win for their teeth too. But besides protecting your jaw bone, coffee has another health-boosting surprise up its sleeve…

Green coffee beans — coffee that hasn’t been roasted yet (available as an extract) — will fight bacteria in your mouth and protect your gums from periodontal disease.

But these benefits, as great as they are, don’t change the fact that coffee’s acidity can soften your tooth enamel and tarnish your pearly whites. That’s why, if you’re going to drink coffee to benefit your teeth and bones, you need to follow a few guidelines to minimize the damage:

  • Drink coffee through a straw so it doesn’t touch your teeth.
  • Rinse your mouth out with water after drinking coffee.
  • Wait at least 30 minutes after drinking coffee to brush your teeth. That gives your enamel time to harden, so you don’t scrub it away.
  • Try natural tooth whitening methods like oil pulling, activated charcoal or apple cider vinegar.
  • Limit yourself to a maximum of five cups of coffee per day.

Editor’s Note: Did you the American Cancer Society reported that coffee can cut risk of death from oral/pharyngeal cancer by about half? For more natural ways to increase your cancer odds, check out Dr. Michael Cutler’s guide: Surviving Cancer. Click here to get it –plus 3 FREE reports–today!

  1. Bashirelahi, et al. “What every dentist should know about coffee.” General Dentistry, 2016 Jul/Aug; 64(4):20-23.
  2. Choi, et al. “The Benefit of Bone Health by Drinking Coffee among Korean Postmenopausal Women: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the Fourth & Fifth Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys.” PLoS One. 2016 Jan 27;11(1).
  3. “Oral Health and Bone Disease.” National Institute of Health Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center.
Jenny Smiechowski

By Jenny Smiechowski

Jenny Smiechowski is a Chicago-based freelance writer who specializes in health, nutrition and the environment. Her work has appeared in online and print publications like Chicagoland Gardening magazine, Organic Lifestyle Magazine, BetterLife Magazine,, and