Fluoride content of Ready-to-Feed (RTF) infant food and drinks in the UK


Anne Maguire, Centre for Oral Health Research, School of Dental Sciences, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 4BW, UK
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e-mail: A.Maguire@ncl.ac.uk


Maguire A, Omid N, Abuhaloob L, Moynihan PJ, Zohoori FV. Fluoride content of Ready-to-Feed (RTF) infant food and drinks in the UK. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol 2012; 40: 26–36. © 2011 John Wiley & Sons A/S

Abstract –  Background:  The level of Fluoride exposure needed to cause dental fluorosis is not known precisely. An awareness of total F intake from all sources, especially during the critical stages of dental development during infancy and early childhood, is important in preventing the development of dental fluorosis.

Objectives:  The aim of the study was to measure F content of ready-to-feed (RTF) infant drinks and foods in the UK.

Methods:  In total, 122 infant foods were analysed for F concentrations, in triplicate, indirectly by an acid diffusion method and 25 infant drinks analysed directly using an F-ion-selective electrode after addition of TISABIII.

Results:  The median (range) F concentration was 0.110 (0.030–0.221) μg/g for breakfast cereals, 0.112 (0.040–1.200) μg/g for savoury meals, 0.056 (0.030–0.379) μg/g for desserts, 0.044 (0.020–0.191) μg/g for fruits, 0.196 (0.040–0.397) μg/g for baked goods, 0.069 (0.050–0.148) μg/ml for juices, 0.016 (0.009–0.030) μg/ml for milks and 0.041 (0.022–0.069) μg/ml for waters. The median (range) F concentration of all RTF infant foods and drinks by recommended age of consumption was 0.029 (0.010–0.245), 0.088 (0.020–0.500), 0.108 (0.100–0.510) and 0.108 (0.060–1.200) μg/g for infants from birth, 4+ month, 6+ month and 10+ month, respectively.

Conclusion:  The results suggest that the F concentrations of UK-marketed RTF infant foods, drinks and formula milk are not sufficiently high to be a risk factor for dental fluorosis, if consumption is within the limits recommended for infants and young children.