Are there foods I should avoid if I have aphthous stomatitis (canker sore)?

With a canker sores, stay away from hot, spicy or acidic foods. These can irritate the sore. 

Canker sores usually heal on their own after a week or two. Over-the-counter topical anesthetics and antimicrobial mouthwashes may provide temporary relief. Antibiotics from your dentist and some oral bandages can reduce secondary infection.
If you've developed a canker sore (aphthous stomatitis), you may find that avoiding certain groups of food can help, including: 
  • spicy foods (e.g. chili peppers and hot sauce)
  • acidic foods (vinegar, oranges, grapefruit, and even pineapple)
  • salty foods  (nuts, popcorn, peanuts, or pretzels)
All of these foods can cause burning, stinging pain when you have a canker sore. Canker sores also may be triggered by allergies to foods like chocolate, coffee, strawberries, or eggs. If you are allergic or sensitive to these foods, avoiding them will help prevent canker sore outbreaks.

Certain foods seem to trigger or aggravate outbreaks of aphthous stomatitis (canker sore) in some people. If you find that you develop ulcers after eating specific foods or your existing ulcers grow more painful, you should avoid the problem foods. Spicy, salty, and acidic foods can be particularly troublesome. They include (but are not limited to) hot peppers, pretzels, potato chips, citrus fruits (oranges, lemons, grapefruit), and fresh pineapple and tomatoes.

Continue Learning about Canker Sores

Canker Sores

Canker Sores

Aphthous stomatitis is a sore that forms inside the mouth, and the most common type is a canker sore. These sores, also called mouth ulcers, are yellow-gray with red rings around them and usually heal in a week or two. Sometimes c...

anker sores are larger or occur in clusters and can take over a month to heal. Treatment is usually with an oral antiseptic and analgesic. Learn more about what affects your risk for canker sores with expert advice from Sharecare.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.