Beginning in the 1960’s, America’s municipal water supplies began to be supplemented with fluoride, with the supposed aim of increasing the country’s dental health. Shortly after, further fluoride supplementation in the form of ingestible lozenges, tablets and drops became available through dentists and over the counter. Although water fluoridation and the sale of over-the-counter fluoride “supplements” continues today, the growing movement to educate about the dangers of this toxic element that is linked to higher breast cancer risk among others things is gaining speed.
FDA Warning Letter Issued About Fluoride Supplements
Surprisingly, the United States Food and Drug Administration is the catalyst for the most exciting recent event concerning fluoride supplementation. In January, 2016, the U.S. FDA issued a warning letter to a major fluoride supplement manufacturer, stating that their products were “not generally recognized as safe and effective” for cavity prevention.
Apparently, no manufacturer of such “supplements” has ever submitted clinical evidence to the FDA proving the effectiveness or safety of these products. In their letter, the FDA states that it considers them “unapproved new drugs” that are unlawful to sell. Several concerned citizens’ groups as well as medical professionals are now relaying off of the FDA’s action, demanding that it go a step further.
Just last month (May, 2016), the international Fluoride Action Network (FAN) and the International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology (IAOMT) joined together to put forth a petition urging the FDA to take similar action against other companies that produce unapproved fluoride drugs, which have been given to children for decades.
Medical and Environmental Professionals Take a Stand Against Fluoride in Water
The petition also comes on the heels of well-known physician and best-selling author Dr. Mark Hyman’s call for a federal investigation of the nation’s water fluoridation practices. Other well-known personalities who have publically supported investigation into a possible “Flouridegate” include Erin Brockovich, environmentalist Lois Gibbs, and Alveda King, a former Georgia state representative and niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The Health Risks of Fluoride Cannot Be DeniedDr. Hyman succinctly explained the bigger picture when it comes to water fluoridation in a recent statement:
“There are numerous mechanisms by which uncontrolled dosing of fluorides through water fluoridation can potentially harm thyroid function, the body and the brain.
A malfunctioning thyroid often leads to weight gain. And diabetics and patients with kidney disease are often thirsty, causing them to consume increased amounts of fluorides if they have access to only fluoridated water. Communities of color and the underserved are disproportionately harmed by fluorides because most rely on municipal water sources, many of which continue to add fluoride, despite research showing the potential harms and negating the potential benefits.”
Currently, 67% of the country’s municipal water supplies are fluoridated, including New York City, DC, Miami, Dallas and the majority of Southern California. California, as well as other states, continues to mandate water fluoridation for communities with populations over 25,000. According to the U.S.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, an average American consumes approximately 3 mg of fluoride a day, in the form of water, pesticide residue from commercially-processed food and other sources. For a healthy adult, this amount could result in hypothyroidism. There are an estimated 27 million Americans today who have been diagnosed with “hypothyroidism;” eighty percent of them are women.
Fluoride ingestion has been directly linked to higher risks of bone, liver and thyroid cancer. In a vicious spiral of ill health, too much fluoride in the body can also lead to higher Breast Cancer risk as well. Fluoride was found to be a known endocrine disruptor in a report published by the U.S. National Research Council in 2006. Endocrine disruptors can lead to imbalanced thyroid function, depleted iodine levels and the eventual use of thyroid medication, all known risk factors for Breast Cancer. In fact, women who take medication to regulate their thyroid are twice as likely to be diagnosed with Breast Cancer than those who do not.
In addition to wreaking havoc on the endocrine system, fluoride also prays on the most vulnerable members of our society: our children. In a 2014 study published by The Lancet, fluoride was classified as one of 11 known “developmental neurotoxins,” chemicals that can do direct damage to the developing brain. Others include lead and mercury.
Citizens Make a Difference!
The recent developments concerning the dangers of fluoride serve as a wake-up call for those just learning about the issue and a beam of hope for those who are already in the know. 97% of Western European countries currently have a ban on water fluoridation. It is about time that the United States joined them in tightening regulations concerning water fluoridation and in over-the-counter supplementation. Considering recent movements, it looks like there is a growing number of concerned citizens who just might make that happen.
Are you concerned about your fluoride levels and how this may be effecting your health, including your iodine levels and Breast Cancer risk? One easy first step is the at-home “Iodine-Bromide-Fluoride” test which will determine whether or not you have toxic levels of these halides and determine if you are iodine deficient.