Did you know that as much as 85% of your body’s phosphorus lies in your teeth and bones?
This essential mineral is the second most abundant mineral (next to calcium), making up about 1% of your total body weight, and can be found in every cell of the human body. Without this powerful mineral, we could not function normally.
Not only does phosphorus have an important role in the maintenance of healthy teeth and bones, but it’s also a key player in the formation of essential building blocks of the body (DNA and RNA). Phosphorus makes sure that important cells and tissues are properly maintained and looked after as they age.
Phosphorus works together with another essential mineral – calcium, to support bone production and remodeling. Calcium needs phosphorus to help it do its job and absorb into your body, so If you are not receiving adequate phosphorus, your body’s calcium goes to waste. Phosphorus deficiencies result in bone brittleness and teeth that chip easily. In fact, if you are experiencing tooth decay, a phosphorous deficiency could be a major contributing factor.
If you are deficient in phosphorus, this could either be because of diet (which we’ll explain a bit more about below) or because you receive certain treatments or medications, including diuretics and blood pressure medications that inhibit your body from absorbing or using phosphorus.
Whether your diet has been low in phosphorous or whether medications have inhibited your absorption of phosphorous, eating foods rich in phosphorous is important. With the right diet, you can replenish the phosphorus in your body and protect your teeth and gums at the same time.
So let’s take a look at what foods are high in phosphorus.
What foods are high in phosphorus?
The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for phosphorus is 700mg for adults over 19 years of age.
Here are some of the best sources of phosphorus:
- Seafood such as octopus, mollusks, cuttlefish and squid – 85 g portion contains up to 450 mg (70% of the RDA)
- Organ meats such as liver and brain – 85 g portion contains about 350 mg (50% of the RDA)
- Beans and lentils – 200 g contains about 350mg (50% of the RDA)
- Sunflower and pumpkin seeds (remember to soak them to release the phytic acid) – 28 g contain about 330 mg (45% of the RDA)
- Nuts (especially Brazil nuts) – 67 g contains about 300 mg (more than 40% of RDA)
- Chicken and turkey- 140 g portion contains about 300 mg (more than 40% of the RDA)
- Pork – 85 g portion contains about 200 mg (25 -32% of the RDA)
- Dairy such as cheese, cottage cheese, and yogurt – 28 g portion contains about 200 mg (25 -32% of the RDA)
If you include a variety of the above foods with plenty of veggies, you will have the amount of phosphorus needed for strong teeth and healthy gums.
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