by Serban V.C. Enache
To the statement – Scientific studies demonstrate that the process of adding fluoride to public water reduces the IQ of the individuals in those areas – Snopes has a clear label: FALSE. But are the ‘gatekeepers’ of factual truth really honest with us? Some research argues the contrary on fluoride, but mainstream academics, news outlets, and business groups have their minds made up. They don’t want higher volumes and deeper levels of scientific inquiry; it’s more cost-effective for them to simply label the opposition “conspiracy theorists.”
In Developmental Fluoride Neurotoxicity: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis [Choi, Sun, Zhang, Grandjean, 2012], children in high-fluoride areas had significantly lower IQ scores than those who lived in low-fluoride areas. The authors used MEDLINE, EMBASE, Water Resources Abstracts, and TOXNET databases through 2011 for eligible studies – and also searched the China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI) database, because many studies on fluoride neurotoxicity have been published in Chinese journals only. In total, they identified 27 eligible epidemiological studies with high and reference exposures, end points of IQ scores, or related cognitive function measures with means and variances for the two exposure groups. The results supported the possibility of an adverse effect of high fluoride exposure on children’s neurodevelopment. Future research should include detailed individual-level information on prenatal exposure, neurobehavioral performance, and covariates for adjustment. But you don’t hear politicians and journalists, especially the big names, drawing attention to this issue.
According to these statistics, prepared using water system data reported by states to the CDC Water Fluoridation Reporting System as of December 31, 2010, and the US Census Bureau estimates from 2010, fluoride is still added to 70 percent of US public drinking water supplies.
Dr. Dean Burk, who in 1937 co-founded the U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI) and headed its cytochemistry department for more than 30 years, co-authored a biochemical study, “The Determination of Enzyme Dissociation Constants,” published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society in ’34. In this interview he equates water fluoridation to “public murder,” referring to this study, done on the 10 largest US cities with fluoridation compared to the 10 largest without it. It demonstrated that deaths from cancer abruptly rose in as little as a year or two after fluoridation began. Mind you, this was government-ordered research.
Two studies from a few years ago don’t do the fluoride defenders any favors. Prenatal Fluoride Exposure and Cognitive Outcomes in Children at 4 and 6–12 Years of Age in Mexico [2017, Bashash, Thomas, Hu, Martinez-Mier, Sanchez, Basu, Peterson, Ettinger, Wright, Zhang, Liu, Schnaas, Mercado-Garcia, Tellez-Rojo, Hernandez-Avilla]. In this study, higher prenatal fluoride exposure, in the general range of exposures reported for other general population samples of pregnant women and nonpregnant adults, was associated with lower scores on tests of cognitive function in the offspring at age 4 and 6–12 years.
Water fluoridation for the prevention of dental caries [2015, Iheozor-Ejiofor, Worthington, Walsh, O’Malley, Clarkson, Macey, Alam, Tugwell, Welch, Glenny]. Authors included only prospective studies with a concurrent control that compared at least two populations – one receiving fluoridated water and the other non‐fluoridated water. For the assessment of fluorosis, authors included any type of study design, with concurrent control, that compared populations exposed to different water fluoride concentrations. Populations of all ages that received fluoridated water (naturally or artificially fluoridated) or non‐fluoridated water were included. Authors used an adaptation of the Cochrane ‘Risk of bias’ tool to assess risk of bias in the included studies. Conclusions: there is insufficient information to determine whether initiation of a water fluoridation programme results in a change in disparities in caries across socioeconomic status (SES) levels. There is insufficient information to determine the effect of stopping water fluoridation programmes on caries levels. No studies that aimed to determine the effectiveness of water fluoridation for preventing caries in adults met the review’s inclusion criteria. Over 97 percent of the studies were at high risk of bias and there was substantial between‐study variation.
Even if one’s highly skeptical of fluoride’s effects on cognitive ability, its supposed dental benefits aren’t a strong enough reason for State authorities to promote it into the water supply, or allow private agents to put it in children’s / baby products. Tribal societies in the non-modern parts of the world, who don’t drink fluoridated water, who don’t have our modern diets, who don’t use tooth paste, have a pretty good dental health bill. Weston Price documented this in his book, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.
Most developed nations DO NOT fluoridate their water. In Western Europe, for example, only 3 percent of the population consumes fluoridated water. While 25 countries have water fluoridation programs, 11 of these countries have less than 20 percent of their population consuming fluoridated water: Argentina (19), Guatemala (13), Panama (15), Papa New Guinea (6), Peru (2), Serbia (3), Spain (11), South Korea (6), the United Kingdom (11), and Vietnam (4). Only 11 countries in the world have more than 50 percent of their population drinking fluoridated water: Australia (80), Brunei (95); Chile (70), Guyana (62), Hong Kong (100), the Irish Republic (73), Israel (70), Malaysia (75), New Zealand (62), Singapore (100), and the United States (64). In total, 5 percent of global population drinks artificially fluoridated water. More people in the United States drink it than the rest of the world combined. There is no difference in tooth decay between Western nations that fluoridate their water and those that don’t.
If society at large is really concerned with the welfare of people’s teeth, how about we curtail all the advertising on sugar products [i.e. the over-consumption and sale of sugar (and at outrageous markups too)], we promote rich protein diets alongside aerobic and anaerobic active lifestyles, ensure adequate Vitamin D supplementation, and access to health care services – instead of pushing this highly controversial substance, fluoride, on large sections of the population, particularly infants.