Fluoride is a mineral that has beneficial effects on our teeth and bones. With regards to teeth the most common benefit is prevention of dental caries as confirmed by the European Food Safety Authority. In small to moderate doses, fluoride may help to strengthen bone.
Tea is a source of fluoride. 2-3 servings of tea a day contributes to fluoride intakes but levels don’t exceed European safe limits and are not even high enough to reach recommended levels1. This suggests that a higher tea consumption of 4-5 cups daily would be better for our dental health. Among higher consumers of tea (up to 5 cups daily) fluoride intakes meet recommended levels and are still below safe limits. In children aged 4-10 years an appropriate intake would be 1-2 servings and in older children up to 4 servings daily could be consumed while remaining within limits for fluoride and caffeine. Read on to find out more about the research supporting benefits behind tea and fluoride.
1 The UK set a safe and adequate intake level of 0.05mg/kg/body weight/day to reflect the ‘no observed adverse effect’ level for dental fluorosis, which is a condition causing mottling of the teeth arising from excessive fluoride consumption. Safe upper levels have been set in Europe at 0.1mg/kg/body weight/day for children aged 1-8 years, 5mg daily for children aged 9-14 years and 7mg daily for adults, including pregnant and breastfeeding women.
2 Fluoride content of retail tea bags and estimates of daily fluoride consumption from typical tea drinking in UK adults and children, C. H. Ruxton, T. J. Bond, Nutr. Bull Volume 40, Issue 4, 268–278
|Tea time||20th Nov '17||Fluoride||Robin Seymour examines the links between tea and fluoride, and reveals if drinking the world’s second favourite beverage has any dental or health benefits||View|
|Fluoride content of UK retail tea: impact of brew time on teas of different quality||21st Dec '16||Fluoride||Tea is a natural source of fluoride (F-) and is a major contributor to adult F- intakes in the UK. In addition, F- has well established oral health benefits.||View|
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