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Why Does Orange Juice Taste Bad After Brushing Your Teeth?

How often have you eaten or drank something right after brushing and noticed it doesn’t taste right? There is a reason for this and why orange juice, in particular, tastes bad after brushing.

Sometimes you cannot avoid having to eat or drink directly after brushing your teeth, so let’s look at why this changes the taste of some foods.

So Exactly Why Does Orange Juice Taste Bad After Brushing?

fresh squeezed orange juice

There is a chemical in products such as toothpaste, shampoos, and detergents that allow them to foam. This chemical is sodium laureth sulfate (SLS), also known as sodium lauryl ether sulfate (SLES).

Another side effect of SLS is that it suppresses the receptors in your taste buds that allow you to taste sweet flavors. Fun, hey! This means that once you have brushed your teeth, any sweetness in foods and drinks is masked, thus giving you the answer to why orange juice tastes bad after you have brushed your teeth. To top it off, SLS also breaks up the fatty molecules in your tongue too. Fatty molecules are called phospholipids, which help to repress bitter foods, and when these are broken down, the bitter flavors in food are enhanced.

Can You Avoid SLS in Toothpaste?

While it is easier to apply foamy spreadable toothpaste, you can look for SLS-free toothpaste if this is impacting your life. Or you can use sugar-free gum or water to wash away the SLS and allow you to enjoy your morning cup of orange juice as nature intends.

However, you should avoid brushing your teeth until after you have eaten. The acidic food typically consumed for breakfast can damage the enamel on your teeth, and brushing before you eat can protect your teeth from this damage.


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