IS FLUORIDE REALLY SAFE ?
This is a controversal subject but one I think needs to be discussed. For years the United States has been adding Fluoride to water systems around the country with the claim that it helps prevent dental caries. (Portland is a rare exception but there is new legislation in Salem trying to push Fluoridation on us again.) It has been going on for so long that most people don't even think about it. It is sort of accepted knowledge that Fluoride is a good thing. I would like to present to you another side of this story.
WHAT IS FLOURIDE?
Fluoride is a natural element found in the earth. Actually, it is a gas and never found in a free state. In microscopic amounts and combined with other minerals it is often considered a trace mineral for nutritional health. Unfortunately, this has nothing to do with Fluoridation. The fluoride added to 90% of drinking water is sodium hydrofluorosilicic acid which is a chemical byproduct of aluminum, steel, cement, phosphate, and nuclear weapons manufacturing. Such fluoride is a manmade product and a very caustic industrial chemical. Any chemist can tell you that this chemical can eat through metals, including stainless steel. It can also dissolve rubber tires and melt concrete and we are putting it into water systems (and tooth paste) to make teeth healthy?
The concept is that it kills bacteria on the teeth which react with sugar to make acid and cause cavities. There is no doubt that it kills bacteria. It is an incredible pesticide. The question is, is it really safe for human consumption? Other issues to consider are:
-- Fluoride acts locally on bacteria, not systemically, so why do we want to swallow it?
-- How do we account for different habits getting different doses. (Some people drink very little water while others drink quarts/day.)
--Some of the top scientists in Canada have issued a warning that it is not safe for infants in any dose.
--There are NO credible studies that show it is safe for long term use. (The original justification was based on the fact that communities with natural Calcium Fluoride in there ground water seemed to have less cavities than normal. The major difference is that Fluoridation uses compounds that are Sodium Fluoride based and are not naturally occurring in nature. These are man-made chemicals which are toxic waste products; they are not even close structurally or chemically to naturally occurring Calcium Fluoride.)
--Since when is it OK to force medicate an entire population without their consent?
--If it is so safe why is the EPA requiring warning labels on all toothpaste with Fluoride to call poison control if you swallow more than a pea size amount of the toothpaste?
--If this is such a great thing, why are we the only country to use this on a large scale? It has been banned in most every country in Europe and they have no more cavities than we do. (Less than 2% of Europe still Fluoridates)
WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE EFFECTS OF FLOURIDE?
There have been hundreds of international studies done on Fluoride. They all seem to be of two types: Studies looking at the risk and benefits of fluoride and studies trying to cover up what is already known about fluoride. One of the best reviews of all the literature is in a book called "Fluoride: the Aging Factor" by Dr John Yiamouyiannis who was director of the National Health Federation. Dr Y spent 25 years doing research and literature reviews on Fluoride. The following are just a few of his findings.
There is pretty conclusive evidence that Fluoride alters or destroys enzymes by changing their shape. Enzymes depend on their shape to fit like lock and keys in many different chemical reactions in the body. Austrian researchers proved as far back as the 70s that as little as 1 ppm (parts per million) concentration can disrupt DNA repair enzymes by 50%. (This is the common dose in water Fluoridation.) Our body depends on DNA repair enzymes to prevent disease as well as slow the aging process. In fact, all major systems of the body depend on enzymes for normal function. In addition, when enzymes are changed, the immune system is activated to attack them as a foreign object which can result in an autoimmune condition.
Another area of concern is with the effects of collagen. Collagen is sort of the glue that holds the body together. It is found in bones and teeth as well as muscles and ligaments. Fluoride seems to affect the mineralization of collagen. Some collagen should be mineralized like bones and teeth while others like muscles, ligaments and tendons should not. Fluoride alters the mineralization process resulting in decreased bone density in the elderly and over-mineralization in young people leading to brittle bones. A major study done in 1990 with 541,000 women proved that communities with fluoride in their water have twice the fracture rate in post-menopausal women compared with communities without Fluoride.
Cancer is another big concern. On a review of 19 major studies done at major universities around the world there was conclusive evidence that fluoride causes genetic damage. The chief chemist of the National Cancer Institute, Dr Dean Burk, when confronted with mountains of data, stated before Congress: "In point of fact, fluoride causes more human cancer death, and causes it faster than any other chemical." (Congressional Record 21 July 1976) In 1977 Dr Burk completed a research project comparing the cancer rates in 10 cities with water fluoridation and 10 cities without. From the start the city with Fluoridation showed a steady increase in cancer rates from 1940-1970 compared to the non-fluoridated city which had very little increase in cancer. Other studies have shown similar findings, especially in the area of bone cancer. Fluoride is also known as a neuro-toxin affecting the development of normal brain cells. Two reporters from The Christian Science Monitor wrote an extensive paper on some recently declassified documents from the Manhattan Project (the development of the atom bomb). It reveals a massive coverup of the dangers of a toxic Fluoride waste product from the production of atomic weapons. (It is a very long story I won't get into here.)
WHY DO WE FLOURIDATE WATER SYSTEMS?
It is a good question that I can't answer. It can only be politics and money. Proponents of Fluoridation like to paint people who are opposed to it as being on the fringe or a bit crazy. I sort of feel just the opposite. They point to the fact that it has been used for 60 years without problems. The fact is effects are very hard to track because they are very long term and are not always associated with Fluoride. Fluoride accumulates in the body just like lead or mercury; it does not break down. In toxicology literature it is listed right next to arsenic in toxicity level.
What do some of the experts say?
"Water fluoridation is the single largest case of scientific fraud, promoted by the government, supported by taxpayer dollars, aided and abetted by the ADA and AMA, in the history of the planet." David Kennedy, DDS President International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology
"Sodium fluoride is a registered rat poison and roach poison. It has been a protected pollutant for a very long time." Wiliam Hirzy PhD, President of the Union of Professional Employees of the EPA
"I am appalled at the prospect of using water as a vehicle for drugs. Fluoride is a corrosive poison that will produce serious effects on a long range basis. Any attempt to use water this way is deplorable." Charles Gordon Heyd, MD, president American Medical Association
"More people have died in the last 30 years from cancer connected with fluoridation than all the military deaths in the entire history of the United States." Dean Burk PHD National Cancer Institute (Fluoridation: A Burning Controversy)
"Fluoridation is the greatest case of scientific fraud of this century, if not of all time." EPA scientist, Dr Robert Carton (Downey, 2 May 99)
IT ISN'T JUST THE WATER
If Fluoride is in the water, it is everywhere: Growing vegetables and fruit, washing vegetables and fruit, in the meat of animals that drink the water, in canned foods and processed foods, soft drinks and alcohol. In 1998, a lab analysis done by Sequoia Analytical Labs of California showed very high concentrations of fluoride in the following foods: Dole pineapple, Snapple, Coke, Hansens Soda, Minute Maid Orange juice, Rice Dream, Pepsi, Gerber juice for babies. This is just a small sampling of products. The point is, even when we don't have Fluoridation like Portland, we are still exposed to it in multiple areas. Even if you buy Organic foods you are exposed if that farm uses Fluoridated water.
What ever your feelings might be on the proposed benefits or risk; no one, government or otherwise, has the right to force medicate the general public and that is exactly what is happening. Chlorine is added to make water safe to drink. Fluoride has no such distinction. Its purpose is to deliver a mass medication without the will of those affected and without consideration for age, physical condition, or dietary habits. This medication is given on a massive scale without any credible clinical trials that are always part of any drug approval, and all so kids who live on soda and sugary foods will possibly have a few less cavities. In my opinion, its ludicrous and unbelievable that they have been doing it for 60 years. For those of you who live in Oregon, they are bringing up the proposal again in the legislature. They have even gotten the Oregonian to print a couple of pro-fluoridation articles that paint us opponents as quacks and uninformed. If you agree that we should have a choice on this matter, I would encourage you to write or call your local representative and voice your opinion. I am proud that Oregon is 48th out of 50 states on the list for the least number of people drinking this poison. Only New Jersey and Hawaii have less Fluoride than Oregon. Lets keep it that way!
Yours in Health,
Dr. Roy Murrell, DC 200 NE 20th Avenue, Suite 140 Portland Oregon 97232 - disclaimer - 971-312-9497