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Is Orange Juice Bad For Your Teeth? 

Your Teeth and Orange Juice

Orange Juice is a common drink that is loved by young and old. We know oranges are really healthy - I mean that's what we get at half time sports, right?! But is orange juice healthy? And is it good for our teeth?! We will be looking at orange juice pH (acidity) of different types of orange juice and we will also take a look at the sugar content. The results may surprise you! They surprised me!!!

Is Orange Juice Healthy?

Video Transcript:

Hi guys, thanks for joining us in this video about the pH of oranges.


So, what exactly are oranges composed of? From a macronutrient perspective all our foods are composed of 3 things; fats, proteins and carbohydrates. There is no fat in oranges. There is a very very small amount of protein, so what oranges are mainly composed of are carbohydrates. In particular oranges are sugars, so fructose and sucrose.


From a micronutrient perspective they’re really really great. They’re full of Vitamin C which is what oranges are really famous for. They also have quite a lot of thiamine, which is a B Vitamin. They have some folate, and they have a lot of antioxidants. This beautiful bright orange colour is really really rich in antioxidants. And what gives them their characteristic sour taste is citric acid. There’s that word, ‘acid’. We’re talking about pH. There’s no doubt oranges are good for our bodies from all those micro nutrients, but is the acid any good for our teeth? And what effect does it have on them?


Not all orange juices are created equal. Both from a nutritional perspective and from an acid perspective. The pH of the freshly squeezed Midnight oranges is 3.9.


We know that a pH of less than 5.5 is going to start to suck the minerals out of our teeth. So freshly squeezed orange juice is definitely in that teeth damaging category.


So our nothing but oranges 100% orange juice, no added preservatives, flavours or sugars. Also pH 3.9. They are the same pH. Great.


Thirdly we have the Harvey Fresh 99% reconstituted orange juice, this one does have added preservatives and colours. pH also 3.9. The same pH as the freshly squeezed orange juice and the nothing but oranges. Pretty cool.


Lastly our Orange C fruit drink has a pH of 3.3. This is the most acidic. The rest of them have a pH of 3.9 so this is the most acidic.


Now, how does this affect your teeth? All of them having a pH of less than 5.5 will suck the minerals out of our teeth and put us at a higher risk of cavities and erosion damage. You can check out our other video on soda water and see how I talk about it’s like the dementors sucking the minerals out of our teeth like they suck the souls out of people in Harry Potter. From a nutritional perspective you can’t go past the freshly squeezed orange juice. So these two – the freshly squeezed oranges and the nothing but oranges they’re gonna give you the best nutritional value. If you like the taste of these- great – I’m not saying that they’re bad at all (recommended daily consumption of orange juice is 125ml this is only half a cup) just be aware of how you’re consuming them.


From a sugar point of view, we can see on the labels here that per 100ml there is 10g carbohydrates, of that 7.6g is sugar. In the nothing but oranges. In the orange fruit juice there is 11g carbohydrates, of that 9.6g is sugar.


Here is our friend Coca Cola. Coca Cola is notorious for being high in sugar. Per 100ml thee are 10.6g sugar! So the same amount of sugar as if you were to have a glass of coke and a glass of orange juice. (In Feb 2021 Health Star Rating of orange juice was dropped from 6 stars to only 2 stars due to the amount of sugar!).


I was standing behind someone at a food truck and there was freshly squeezed orange juice happening. And the mother said to her son who was about 9 or 10 years old, ‘yep you can get the orange juice, it’s good for you, it’s got no sugar in it’. Now she’s right that it doesn’t have any added sugar, but there is heaps and heaps of natural sugar in orange juice. So you’ve still got to be aware that while what you’re consuming has a lot of good minerals and antioxidants in it, it’s still high in sugar.


From a teeth perspective, the bugs on your teeth eat sugar, and convert it to acid. That aid is going to do damage. It’s all the same sugar. It’s the same sugar to them that comes out of a can of coke. So, when you consume things like fresh orange juice, fresh any kind of fruit juice really, just be conscious of the sugar and the acid that’s going into your mouth.

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