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Fluoride Conspiracy.... Fact, or Fiction ?????
Also, Is Fluorine [and Chlorine] making us Fat and sick?
For years we have gone around about the dental benefits or dangers of fluoride without any definitive answers. Every so often a new "conspiracy theory" would surface. Just like you, as a dentist I am also confused by the conflicting info out there. The American Dental Association always has supported fluoride use and the dental branch of NIH has been researching it and amalgam forever ... still never finding problems with either one. A secretary on the phone there [NIDH] once laughingly responded to me that if it was not for fluoride and amalgam they would probably be out of business !!!! That spoke volumes to me!
First, let me say that there are times when it does seem to be helpful to specific patients with problems of sensitivity and/or out of control decay. Does that a mean it's good for everybody? Is it good for kids? Should it be in our water? Probably not.
If it is used at all, it only needs to be used on the surface of teeth and then spit out. It does not need to be taken internally as in drinking water. Fluoride is a very toxic poison. It is a known neurotoxin - toxic to nerve tissue.
Another issue that I have wondered about is whether it interferes with thyroid function. If you remember from school, the thyroid needs a certain amount of iodine to function properly. Well, it just so happens that fluorine is very similar to iodine [chlorine is, also] so we have two things added to water that maybe can compete with the iodine receptor sites and block them from correct interaction with the thyroid hormone.
That might mean that even if you test for thyroid hormone and the results show you have plenty, you might not be able to get the benefit from it ! Could that be at least part of the reason why people in the USA are generally overweight? .......Hypo-thyroid? Even if they test ok?
Now, understand, please !!!! I am not qualified to be sure of what the answer is on this, but it's a question that I have been asking for years.
Perhaps someone reading this has the suitable medical / biochemical / endocrinology background to tell me the answer to this question. I'd appreciate it and I would pass it on to my other readers.
Added in 2010:
Is Fluoride making us fat ?
As mentioned above, I have long been asking if Fluoride could be interfering with thyroid function so that even though we might have plenty of thyroid hormone being produced, and blood tests show that to be the case, maybe the fluoride we are exposed to is stopping the thyroid hormone from working!
If you do a search on "fluoride interfering with thyroid", you'll be surprised to find many articles talking about just how fluoride replaces the iodine receptors and interferes with thyroid activity.
We are exposed to fluoride and also to chlorine quite a bit. Both are added to drinking water in most of the United States. Even if you only drink bottled water, so much of our food production uses public drinking water for irrigation, washing etc so that it's hard to imagine NOT being exposed to them!
Iodine, chlorine, bromine and fluorine are all very similar chemically and are all called "halogens" and all are used a lot in food production and processing and more.
There are many articles on the internet about this, but I will just cite one part of one of them to give you a taste of what you will find if you start to check it out. The following is shortened from what you will find.
The Effects Of Fluoride On
The Thyroid Gland
By Dr Barry Durrant-Peatfield MBBS LRCP MRCS
Medical Advisor to Thyroid UK
There is a daunting amount of research studies showing that the widely acclaimed benefits on fluoride dental health are more imagined than real. My main concern however, is the effect of sustained fluoride intake on general health. Again, there is a huge body of research literature on this subject, freely available and in the public domain.
It has been known since the latter part of the 19th century that certain communities, notably in Argentina, India and Turkey were chronically ill, with premature ageing, arthritis, mental retardation, and infertility; and high levels of natural fluorides in the water were responsible. Not only was it clear that the fluoride was having a general effect on the health of the community, but in the early 1920s Goldemberg, working in Argentina showed that fluoride was displacing iodine; thus compounding the damage and rendering the community also hypothyroid from iodine deficiency.
Highly damaging to the thyroid gland
This was the basis of the research in the 1930s of May, Litzka, Gorlitzer von Mundy, who used fluoride preparations to treat over-active thyroid illness. Their patients either drank fluoridated water, swallowed fluoride pills or were bathed in fluoridated bath water; and their thyroid function was as a result, greatly depressed. The use in 1937 of fluorotyrosine for this purpose showed how effective this treatment was; but the effectiveness was difficult to predict and many patients suffered total thyroid loss. So it was given a new role and received a new name, Pardinon. It was marketed not for over-active thyroid disease but as a pesticide. (Note the manufacturer of fluorotyrosine was IG Farben who also made sarin, a gas used in World War II).
This bit of history illustrates the fact that fluorides are dangerous in general and in particular highly damaging to the thyroid gland, a matter to which I shall return shortly. While it is unlikely that it will be disputed that fluorides are toxic - let us be reminded that they are Schedule 2 Poisons under the Poisons Act 1972, the matter in dispute is the level of toxicity attributable to given amounts; in today's context the degree of damage caused by given concentrations in the water supply. While admitting its toxicity, proponents rely on the fact that it is diluted and therefore, it is claimed, unlikely to have deleterious effects.
They could not be more mistaken
It seems to me that we must be aware of how fluoride does its damage. It is an enzyme poison. Enzymes are complex protein compounds that vastly speed up biological chemical reactions while themselves remaining unchanged. As we speak, there occurs in all of us a vast multitude of these reactions to maintain life and produce the energy to sustain it. The chains of amino acids that make up these complex proteins are linked by simple compounds called amides; and it is with these that fluorine molecules react, splitting and distorting them, thus damaging the enzymes and their activity. Let it be said at once, this effect can occur at extraordinary low concentrations; even lower than the one part per million which is the dilution proposed for fluoridation in our water supply.
What is the result of these toxic effects?
First the immune system. The distortion of protein structure causes the immune proteins to fail to recognize body proteins, and so instigate an attack on them, which is Autoimmune Disease. Autoimmune diseases constitute a body of disease processes troubling many thousands of people: Rheumatoid Arthritis, Systemic Lupus Erythematosis, Asthma and Systemic Sclerosis are examples; but in my particular context today, thyroid antibodies will be produced which will cause Thyroiditis resulting in the common hypothyroid disease, Hashimoto's Disease and the hyperthyroidism of Graves' Disease.
My particular concern is the effect of fluorides on the thyroid gland
Perhaps I may remind you about thyroid disease. The thyroid gland produces hormones which control our metabolism - the rate at which we burn our fuel. Deficiency is relatively common, much more than is generally accepted by many medical authorities: a figure of 1:4 or 1:3 by mid life is more likely. The illness is insidious in its onset and progression. People become tired, cold, overweight, depressed, constipated; they suffer arthritis, hair loss, infertility, atherosclerosis and chronic illness. Sadly, it is poorly diagnosed and poorly managed by very many doctors in this country.
What concerns me so deeply is that in concentrations as low as 1ppm, fluorides damage the thyroid system on 4 levels.
1. The enzyme manufacture of thyroid hormones within the thyroid gland itself. The process by which iodine is attached to the amino acid tyrosine and converted to the two significant thyroid hormones, thyroxine (T4) and liothyronine (T3), is slowed.
2. The stimulation of certain G proteins from the toxic effect of fluoride (whose function is to govern uptake of substances into each of the cells of the body), has the effect of switching off the uptake into the cell of the active thyroid hormone.
3. The thyroid control mechanism is compromised. The thyroid stimulating hormone output from the pituitary gland is inhibited by fluoride, thus reducing thyroid output of thyroid hormones.
4. Fluoride competes for the receptor sites on the thyroid gland which respond to the thyroid stimulating hormone; so that less of this hormone reaches the thyroid gland and so less thyroid hormone is manufactured.
These damaging effects, all of which occur with small concentrations of fluoride, have obvious and easily identifiable effects on thyroid status. The running down of thyroid hormone means a slow slide into hypothyroidism. Already the incidence of hypothyroidism is increasing as a result of other environmental toxins and pollutions together with wide spread nutritional deficiencies.
The Myths surrounding Fluoride
Perhaps we have a partial answer about the "myths" surrounding the fluoride issues. A reportedly prominent fluoride researcher, Phyllis Mullenix , PhD and toxicologist has published an article in the Oct-Dec, 2005 issue of the International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health [ according to "Dental Truth" newsletter, a publication of DAMS, Int'l.]
The newsletter abstract of her research article reports that she went back to check the original industrial reports of the Manhattan Project, the US project to develop the Atom bomb in the late 1940's and 50's.
Conspiracy theories have long been around that fluoride dumping in water supplies and fraudulent government conspiracy schemes resulted from the A-bomb/ uranium production industry!!!
Dr. Mullenix writes that the fluoride industries' own data from over 50 years ago showed that fluoride is toxic. She reports essentially that the data was manipulated fraudulently to show the results the industry [and the US government?] wanted to see. The general idea here is that the fluoride waste needed to be disposed of and it was a priority industry for the government so we could develop nuclear weapons.
In short, data showing toxic results to people exposed to fluoride was changed to show that - not only was it OK, but that - it was actually BENEFICIAL !!!!
A striking example of how this can easily be done is the following: It was claimed in an ADA article that the workers [exposed to fluoride] had fewer filled and decayed teeth.
WOW! That must mean that it reduced their rate of tooth decay, right?... Well, not exactly. The truth is, according to Mullenix, that these workers had lost almost all their teeth... so of course, they had fewer decayed and filled teeth than the control group that did not have exposure to fluoride. They didn't have hardly any kind of teeth at all! And clearly, at least part of the reason they had lost their teeth seemed to be related the fluoride.
She goes on to document many other examples of how data was manipulated to show what the industry [and government agencies?] wanted to see.
Those of you that understand how research and statistics work in the real world will easily understand how this can be done .... all with a handshake and a wink when the interested parties are trying to show a biased result rather than objective "pure scientific" research - if that actually exists at all. But in the name of morality and ethical conduct, researchers are supposed to at least "try" to keep their work objective and truthful. What Mullenix shows is just the opposite.
So perhaps we have the door open a bit now and perhaps we will be able to get closer to the truth.
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