Trust, But Verify - A Fluoride Tale
As many of you know, a year and a half ago John and I found out we were pregnant with our first baby girl. The pregnancy changed our lives in many ways, but the primary change we made was with regards to our health. We began to eat only high quality organic/non GMO foods, we began to supplement our bodies with nutrients hard to find in our food supply, and we made the decision to move out of the city to get away from chemical-laden water. We did this for ourselves, but most importantly, we did this for our daughter. We wanted to protect her from the toxins of society in-utero so that her immune system would be strong and her body better able to fight off illness as a child and adult. The specific chemical we wanted to avoid in the water was fluoride. While mother nature naturally filters fluoride from breast milk, it does not stop fluoride from crossing the blood brain barrier in-utero. Exposure to fluoride through the mother during pregnancy has been linked to skeletal fluorosis in childhood. Skeletal fluorosis can be defined as a thickening of bones resulting in decreased flexibility and thus increased fractures. In animal testing, fluoride introduced during gestation caused extreme hyperactivity once the fetus was born, and the International Society for Fluoride Research has also indicated that fluoride ingested during pregnancy might be linked to Down’s Syndrome and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Fluoride has also been linked to decreased milk supply in lactating lab animals. The harmful effects of this substance doesn't stop with infants. It is dangerous for adults, too. According to the National Research Council, fluoride impairs the thyroid gland by replacing iodine in the thyroid, thus those with hypothyroidism are encouraged to stop drinking tap water with fluoride. Fluoride also negatively affects those with kidney disease who need to drink more water. With an already impaired kidney, it is hard for such persons to filter fluoride out of their body, thus doctors recommend drinking non-fluoridated water. The US National Cancer Institute states that “fluoride causes more human cancer death, and causes if faster, than any other chemical”. Have you ever seen someone with splotchy brown teeth? This is a disease called fluorosis and is caused from overexposure to fluoride in the tap water. Not only does it cause discoloration, but it weakens the teeth to the point they can break with little pressure, making eating a challenge. According to an article by Dr. Griffin Cole, fluoride poisoning also causes “dermatitis, gastric distress, musculoskeletal problems, pulmonary disease, cancer and even death”. In fact, Dr. Cole quotes Proctor and Gamble (creators of Crest Toothpaste) as acknowledging that “a family-sized tube of toothpaste ‘...contains enough fluoride to kill a small child’”. There are claims about the psychological effects of fluoride, as well. According to Dr. Jan De Vries, “This fluoride water is a chemical soft-working tranquilizer. Hitler put fluoride in the water to keep his prisoners quiet, and the same thing happens in other parts of the world”. In fact Prozac, also called, "fluoxetine", contains a high level of fluoride and is linked to suicidal tendencies in those who take it. Although these facts lead some to believe that fluoride in the water is a conspiracy to dumb down the masses, I’d argue that it is a conspiracy to easily rid toxic waste for the aluminum and phosphorus industries. According to Dr. Griffin Cole, the the aluminum and phosphate fertilizer industries saw a boom in the 1920’s and 1930’s. This resulted in a similar boom of fluoride-waste byproduct that the government demanded not be dumped into the environment. Initially the waste was utilized in rat poison and insecticide, but there remained a large surplus of fluoride that the industry did not know what to do with. Dr. Cole claims that a man named Dr. Gerald Cox of the Mellon Institute recommended the waste be dumped in the public drinking supply to minimize tooth decay. Interestingly enough, the Mellon’s owned ALCOA - the Aluminium Company of America. This indicates that the aluminum industry itself devised the idea that fluoride should be put in water to ensure not only EPA compliant disposal of the waste, but to ensure an ongoing profit from what was once considered a “waste” product. Today, local governments are given grant money by the Federal government to continue the practice, making if difficult for activists to convince their elected officials to stop adding waste to their drinking water. To dumb us down, to help our teeth or to simply rid waste, the fact of the matter is that fluoride is a drug prescribed by city council without the knowledge or consent of many of those who drink it, a practice that should be shocking to their constituents. Especially since they prescribe the same dosage to infants, children and adults. According the Baines Report of the University of Texas, Dr. Jeremy Wiseman, M.D. testified in front of Austin City council on this issue specifically, “When I prescribe a drug I sit down with the patient and inform her of the benefits and potential side effects of the medicine. And then I ask for her permission to medicate her. That process is missing with fluoridation. And dosage - if I were to give the same prescription of Amoxicillin to an adult as an infant I would lose my license. So why does it make sense to have the same dosage of fluoride in every glass of drinking water?” Recently the CDC lowered the recommended level of water fluoridation from 1.2 parts per million to .7 parts per million. This is nearly a 50% decrease and should raise red flags to people consuming tap water. If they said 1.2 parts per million was a safe level and now they say it is not safe, how soon will they say the same about their “new” safe level? After John and I compiled all of this research on water Fluoridation, we decided we weren’t going to take any chances, so we called our new water company and requested a chemical breakdown of the water. There was naturally occurring fluoride at .1 ppm, a level that left John and I comfortable removing our fluoride filter from our Berkey Water Filtration System. We celebrated! We had moved away from the poison water found in Austin and we could focus our energy in other ways. Last month our elation was halted abruptly. A test conducted by Fluoride Free Austin revealed that the water in our home contained fluoride at 1.1 parts per million, a rate much higher than Austin claims to fluoridate their water (.7ppm). We were shocked and heartbroken. We called the water company who was hostile at first, but eventually calmed enough to talk to John and explain what was going on. Last summer we experienced 73 days of 100+ degree heat and no rain. The state of Texas forced Creedmoor Baha Water Supply to stop using their own wells to provide water to their customers, so our water company was forced to buy water from other municipalities. While they claim the water at our house is likely coming from Austin, they could not account for the extra .5 parts per million found in the water. This means I, unfortunately, drank heavily fluoridated water during my entire pregnancy while our fluoride filters sat unused in the hall closet. I had my friends and family drink heavily fluoridated water while visiting (and bragging about the chemical free water). No one is to blame but us because we trusted but we didn’t verify. Test your water no matter what “they” say is in it, because you honestly don’t know unless you confirm for yourself!