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6 Vitamins For Strong Teeth

Consuming These 6 Vitamins Daily Can Help Strengthen Your Teeth

Have chipped teeth? Weak enamel? Or feel like you just can’t help but get cavities? You’re not alone, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, approximately 90% of adults between 20 – 64 years old have tooth decay!

image of plate with words dental cavities on it

And, if you do a quick search on vitamins for strong teeth you’ll likely be inundated with all sorts of foods, drinks, vitamins, minerals, pills, powders, and supplements that claim to be it thing to have to build stout pearly whites.

With so many products and foods out there, it can feel overwhelming trying to figure out exactly what vitamins you need to make your teeth stronger. Well, that’s why this post exists with the intention of providing you straight to the point information on the top eight vitamins for strong teeth.

Read on to learn about how each vitamin (and mineral) supports building and maintaining strong teeth, the recommended daily amounts of each, and foods high in each one.

Plus, if you’re wondering how the heck you’re going to get all these vitamins on the regular, there’s a one-day sample meal plan (with nutrient information) too!

Calcium

You may be aware that calcium helps build strong bones and strong teeth. And yes, it sure does but you may be curious how it does this. Well, calcium supports strong teeth in several ways.

The outer protective layer of your teeth is called enamel. And calcium helps protect and remineralize your enamel and in doing so, calcium helps reduce the development of tooth decay and therefore indirectly, may safeguard your teeth from cracking or needing to be pulled. To learn more about what is enamel and the layers of the tooth check out my other blog post “Is Coffee Bad For Your Teeth” and head to the how coffee causes cavities section.

Not sure what remineralizing means? Essentially, calcium helps rebuild and replace minerals lost on your enamel that protect the inside of your teeth from damage. Enamel loss happens when you eat or drink foods that are acidic and cause erosion. For more details refer to WebMD’s tooth remineralization article.

Foods High In Calcium

The recommended daily allowance aka RDA aka how much calcium you should try to consume regularly are as follow:

Men 19 – 70: 1,000 milligrams (mg)
Women 19 – 50: 1,000 mg
Women 50+: 1,200 mg

Now, when you think of foods high in calcium you may think dairy products or maybe even reminisce on Popeye the sailor man and think spinach. See the chart below for foods high in calcium, some might surprise you!

FoodServing SizeCalcium in mg
Unsweetened
Almond Milk
1 cup~480 mg
Low Fat Yogurt8 ounces~390 mg
Ricotta Cheese
Part Skim
4 ounces~335 mg
Canned Sardines
With Bones
3 ounces~325 mg
Low Fat Milk1 cup~310 mg
Calcium Fortified
Soy Milk
1 cup~300 mg
Cooked Collard
Greens
1 cup~265 mg

As you can see, there are a few milk and dairy options on here high in calcium. If you want a more in-depth look at milk for teeth health, I have a blog post, “Is Milk Good For Your Teeth?” that covers all things milk nutrition and dental benefits.

And, one last thing about calcium, if you are striving to increase your body’s absorption of this crucial mineral try having calcium with fat-soluble vitamin D.

Image of Ca + D showing Ca and D work together

Vitamin D

Speaking of vitamin D, it is another vitamin that is super important for helping teeth become or remain strong. Just like calcium, vitamin D also plays a role in helping teeth remineralization. Vitamin D does this by increasing the absorption of calcium and phosphorus into your teeth.

The layer just under your enamel is called dentin. And vitamin D not only helps remineralize enamel, but it also helps repair damaged dentin and keep healthy dentin healthy.

This fat-soluble vitamin directly helps keep teeth strong and as well as supports the functioning of other systems in your body that foster teeth health. Vitamin D has been shown to contribute to immune health, the nervous system and the musculoskeletal system. So, having low levels of this vitamin could impact your whole body’s health which could cause your teeth to become weak too.

Foods High in Vitamin D

The RDA for vitamin D is as follows:

The RDA for vitamin D is as follows:

Men and Women 19 – 69: 600 IU (international units)
Men and Women 70+: 800 IU

You may have read that there are not a ton of food sources that are high in vitamin D.  And, to some extent that is true.  Getting adequate sunlight on the regular can be a big natural source of vitamin D intake, but there are still some great food options that contain vitamin D as well as other nutrients important for dental health. So, check out the chart below for the sources:

FoodServing SizeVitamin D in IU
Wild Caught
Salmon
3 ounces~450 IU
Mackerel3 ounces~300 IU
Canned Sardines
With Bones
3.5 ounces~190 IU
Canned Tuna3 ounces~155 IU
Fortified Milk1 cup~115 IU
Fortified Soy1 cup~110 IU
Egg Yolk1 egg~37 IU
vitamin d deficiency list includes bone loss, hair loss, muscle pain, depression, high blood pressure and heart attacks

Before we wrap up vitamin D, if you are thinking you just can’t meet your daily needs through food and sunlight and need to supplement, that is a perfectly valid thought!  Although vitamin D supplements appear to be everywhere, not everyone needs to supplement.

Some chronic conditions, medications, diet, or where you live may impact your vitamin D status.  And this may make taking a supplement a great idea. 

However, the dosage, how often and for how long will varying depending on your unique lifestyle and needs. As a registered dietitian I can help you navigate your supplement needs.  If looking for help, feel free to contact me.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A most commonly is understood to help with eyesight and skin health. Like most vitamins it has a vital function in many aspects of our bodies and oral health is one of them. Vitamin A directly helps with strong teeth by synthesizing keratin. Keratin is a protein that helps build and maintain strong enamel.

On top of that, vitamin A indirectly supports strong teeth by helping with saliva production and reducing dry mouth. Saliva is a wonderful cleaning tool in your mouth that gets rid of acid and bacteria on your teeth that can lead to tooth decay.

Foods High in Vitamin A

The RDA for vitamin A is as follows:

Men 19+: 900 micrograms (mcg)
Women 19+: 700 mcg

Bright orange fruits and vegetables tend to be great sources of vitamin A, take a look at the table below to find seven specific foods packed with this powerhouse nutrient:

FoodServing SizeVitamin A in mcg
Beef Liver3 ounces6,500 mcg
Cod Liver Oil1 Tablespoon4,000 mcg
Sweet Potato
With The Skin
1/2 medium
potato
700 mcg
Raw Carrots1/2 cup460 mcg
Cooked Spinach1/2 cup570 mcg
Cantaloupe1/2 cup135 mcg
Pumpkin Pie1 slice480 mcg

Vitamin K2

Although vitamin K2 is part of the vitamin K family, it helps our body and teeth and different ways than typical vitamin K1 does. This is a relatively newly discovered vitamin, so it is still in the early stages of research, but from what has come out so far, K2 has big benefits for our teeth.

anatomy of mouth with teeth and jaw

To date, from what has been understood vitamin K2 helps increase bone mineral density and removes arterial calcification. When it comes to your teeth, K2 helps increase tooth density by helping to build up new dentin. It does this by working with vitamin D to move calcium from your tissues, into your bloodstream and off to your teeth.

Some speculative research shows this vitamin might also help get rid of bacteria that cause cavities and might even help with jaw formation in a way that creates a structural situation for teeth to grow straight and strong.

Again, the research and science are still quite early on the vitamin’s advantages and there is much to be studied about its benefits. If you are interested in some of the more concrete research, you can dive into some studies provided on ScienceDirect’s Vitamin K2 webpage.

Foods High in Vitamin K2

Being that this is a vitamin that is in its infancy of understanding there are no RDAs provided by official sources (like the USDA, HealthyPeople or the National Institute of Health). When looking into the research it appears that consuming the following may be a good daily starting point.

For adults 19+: 90 – 110 mcg

Food sources of vitamin K2 are a bit different then typical K1 sources, refer to the table below for the K2 goodness:

FoodServing SizeVitamin K2 in mcg
Beef Liver3.5 ounces~105 mcg
Pork Chop3.5 ounces~75 mcg
Egg Yolk1 Yolk~60 mcg
Hard Cheese1 ounce~21 mcg
Soft Cheese1 ounce~17 mcg
Blue Cheese1 ounce~10 mcg
Sauerkraut3.5 ounces~5 mcg

And if you are looking to make this vitamin work to its potential, it appears that having it with calcium and vitamin D makes it that much more beneficial. As is usually the case, nutrients are best absorbed and used when consumed together primarily from food sources!

Phosphorus

Phosphorus is a mineral that is yet another vital nutrient for our oral health. Like all the other vitamins and minerals listed in this post, phosphorus not only assists our teeth but also supports the healthy functioning of many systems in our body.

Regarding our dental health, phosphorus works with calcium to rebuild and strengthen enamel. Indeed, phosphorus and calcium are reliant upon one another, and we wouldn’t even be able to use calcium if we didn’t have phosphorus.

Without phosphorus or if you are deficient in it, your bones could become brittle and your teeth weak, which could cause them to be prone to cracks and chips.

Foods High in Phosphorus

Foods high in calcium tend to also be good sources of phosphorus. The RDA for this important mineral are as follows:

Adults 19+: 700 mg

You can look forward to eating your phosphorus with these seven high-phosphorus foods:

FoodServing SizePhosphorus in mg
Plain Yogurt6 ounces~245 mg
2% Milk1 cup~226 mg
Salmon3 ounces~225 mg
Mozzarella Cheese
Part Skim
1.5 ounces~197 mg
Chicken Breast3 ounces~180 mg
Cashews1 ounce~140 mg
Brown Rice1/2 cup~100 mg

Potassium

Potassium sure is needed for cardiovascular health and bone mineral density, it may not be the first mineral that comes to mind for strong teeth, nonetheless, it’s another key nutrient to keeping those pearly whites strong and healthy.

Potassium is a nutrient that supports regulating blood acid levels. Then, helps to keep calcium in your jaw and teeth. Potassium allows your body to optimally use calcium for teeth health.

Foods High in Potassium

a variety of foods shows that are high in potassium

When you think potassium you might think bananas, and while they certainly are on the list of high-potassium foods, there are others on there that you may not be aware of.

Before you review the 7 high potassium foods, here’s the RDA:

Men 19+: 3,400 mg
Women 19+: 2,600 mg

FoodServing SizePotassium in mg
Dried Apricots1/2 cup~755 mg
Cooked Lentils1 cup~731 mg
Dried Prunes1/2 cup~635 mg
Orange Juice1 cup~495 mg
Banana1 medium~420 mg
Milk1 cup~370 mg
Raw Spinach2 cups~334 mg

And as a tip, since calcium relies on potassium eating foods rich in both during the same meal and snack is a great way to support the synergistic effects of two minerals.

Zinc

And last, but certainly not least zinc is an essential mineral when it comes to a healthy diet for strong teeth. Zinc does a few things both directly and indirectly for your teeth.

Directly, zinc fosters the healthy formation and maintenance of teeth by helping to remineralize enamel and minimize or prevent calculus from building up on them.

Indirectly, zinc is found in saliva, so it helps support the immune system within your mouth by assisting with fighting off bad bacteria.

Foods High in Zinc

Zinc seemed to have come to the forefront as an important nutrient to help boost your immune system and fend off colds. There are a lot of supplements on the market, but you can find zinc in several foods and we don’t need a ton of it daily.

The RDAs for zinc are as follows:

Adult men 19+: 11 mg
Adult women 19+ 11 mg

FoodServing SizeZinc in mg
Raw Oysters2 medium11 mg
Roasted Beef
Chuck
3 ounces8 mg
Cooked Lobster
Meat
3 ounces6 mg
Cashews1.5 ounces3 mg
Hemp Seeds3 tablespoons3 mg
Chickpeas1 cup2.5 mg
Pumpkin Seeds1 ounce2.2 mg

How To Eat Enough of These Nutrients Everyday

With so many nutrients along with varying RDAs it may be hard to figure out how to get all these essential vitamins each and everyday. The good news is if you eat a balanced diet with a variety of foods on as many days per week that is practical for you, you’re likely getting all or close enough to the amount you need for strong teeth. If nourishing yourself for strong teeth is what you strive for and you’re feeling overwhelmed, read through this sample one day meal plan for some guidance on what to eat and meet all the nutrient needs.

foods planned and portioned, meals prepped for the week

One Day Sample Meal Plan

Breakfast:

Spinach and Fruit Smoothie

  • 3 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 2 cups raw spinach
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 medium banana
  • 1 cup pineapple
  • 1 cup mango
  • water

Breakfast Nutrient Totals:

  • Calcium – 415 mg
  • Vitamin D – 115 IU
  • Phosphorus – 226 mg
  • Potassium – 1581 mg
  • Zinc – 3 mg

Mid-morning Snack:

  • 1 hard boiled egg
  • 1 ounce of hard cheese
  • 1.5 ounces of cashews

Mid-morning Snack Nutrient Totals:

  • Calcium – 205 mg
  • Vitamin D – 40 IU
  • Vitamin K2 – 21 mcg
  • Phosphorus – 257 mg 
  • Potassium – 98 mg 
  • Zinc – 3 mg

Lunch:

Protein Rice Bowl

  • Salmon
  • Brown rice ½ cup
  • Cubed, roasted sweet potato ¼ – ½ cup
  • Raw carrot ½ cup
  • 1 ounce of hard cheese

Lunch Nutrient Totals:

  • Calcium – 360 mg
  • Vitamin D – 453 IU
  • Vitamin K2 – 21 mcg
  • Vitamin A – 810 mcg
  • Phosphorus – 425 mg 
  • Potassium – 350 mg

Mid-afternoon Snack:

  • ¼ cup dried apricots
  • 1.5 ounces of cashews
  • 1 medium banana

Mid-afternoon Nutrient Totals:

  • Potassium – 798 mg
  • Zinc – 3 mg

Dinner:

Blue Cheese Chicken and Sides

  • 2 cups raw spinach
  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • 1 ounce of blue cheese stuffed into 3 ounces of chicken breast

Dinner Nutrient Totals:

  • Vitamin K2 – 10 mcg
  • Phosphorus – 180 mg
  • Potassium – 334 mg
  • Zinc – 2.5 mg

After Dinner Snack (Optional):

  • 1 cup of milk with chocolate syrup

After Dinner Snack Nutrient Totals:

  • Calcium – 310 mg
  • Potassium – 370 mg
  • Phosphorus – 226 mg
  • Vitamin D – 115 IU

Entire Day Nutrient Totals:

  • Calcium – 1040 mg
  • Vitamin D – 604 IU
  • Vitamin A – 810 mcg (meets need for women) for men increase carrot portion for lunch by ¼ to meet needs
  • Vitamin K2 – 91 mcg
  • Phosphorus – 731 mg 
  • Potassium – 3,121 mg (meets need for women) for men increase apricot snack portion to ½ cup to meet needs
  • Zinc – 11.5 mg

Vitamins for Strong Teeth Conclusion

strong mouth and teeth biting down on Brazilian nut

We eat everyday and our mouth is the first area of our bodies that are exposed to foods. So, what kinds of foods and their nutritional content have a big impact on our oral health. Having strong teeth that you feel confident can bite through things from nuts to seeds to apples is important to our quality of life.

Eating all the essential vitamins for sturdy teeth doesn’t have to feel complicated, time consuming or overwhelming. Try to focus on eating a variety of vegetables, grains, nuts, seeds, fats and protein sources. Overtime eating these foods will become habit and second nature, something you won’t even have to think twice about. Hopefully, this article provided you with an idea and foundation on what and how much of each nutrient to each for strong teeth.

For a more tailored, individualized approach with what to eat (or supplement) for strong teeth I offer an array of services that may met your needs. Please head over to my contact page and get in touch.

Cheers to Enjoying Eating Vitamins For Strong Teeth

6 vitamins for strong teeth plus info on each vitamin, food sources and a sample meal plan

For More Info, See These Additional Sources

Vitamins For Strong Teeth

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