Zinc citrate is derived from zinc, a naturally occurring mineral. Citric acid (derived from corn) is combined with the zinc (zinc oxide) and a precipitate is formed which is purified and dried. Zinc citrate helps stop odor by inhibiting bacterial accumulation on your skin. Tartar forms in the mouth when plaque mineralizes on your teeth. The resulting hard deposits (calcified plaque or tartar) can only be removed by a dentist or hygienist. If allowed to accumulate, tartar can provide even more surface area for plaque to accumulate. Zinc citrate helps prevent tartar buildup by preventing plaque from hardening (calcifying).