Micronutrient 101: Minerals - Fluoride

by Jowynna Yeo - 18th Oct 2019

Fluoride! 

I'm sure you've seen this on your toothpaste before, right? 

Well, it exists in your food as well. Fluoride is considered a trace element because only small amounts are present in our body. 

Now, let's take time to understand this mineral :) 

 

Fluorine is present in almost all tissue, especially the teeth and bones.

Fun fact: About 95% of the total body fluoride is stored in our bones and teeth.

Do you know how Fluoride helps to prevent cavities? 

1. Fluoride concentrates in the growing bones and developing teeth of children, helping to harden the enamel on child and adult teeth before they emerge

2. Fluoride helps to maintain the hardened enamel on adult teeth.

Although it helps to prevent dental caries, fluoride is not generally considered an essential mineral element because we do not require it for growth or to sustain life.

 

Now, where can we get fluoride to prevent dental caries? 

Well, the main source of fluoride globally is drinking water.

Fluid Pouring in Pint Glass

The fluoride content of most foods is low, however, you may get fluoride from tea, which concentrates fluoride in its leaves, and marine fish that are consumed with their bones (such as sardines).

Clear Plastic Packs

Author Details

Founder of Vease, Jowynna loves tackling picky eaters and teaching children about food & nutrition. Jowynna is also a Consultant Dietitian at ABC Children Specialist Clinic.