Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola
- U.K. Health Secretary Sajid Javid announced he would be adding fluoride to the water supply, a move that was supported by the chief medical officers of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales
- In response three British scientists sent a public letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, cautioning “This is not a good time for the British government to mislead the public on the dangers posed by the practice of water fluoridation.”
- England’s chief medical officer dismissed the concerns, calling them “exaggerated and unevidenced.” However, there are 70 human and 60 animal studies demonstrating an association between fluoride ingestion and a reduction in learning or memory
- Evidence also suggests fluoride is associated with ADHD and disrupted sleep patterns and is an endocrine disruptor. U.K. citizens may sign a petition for Parliament to consider it for debate. While reverse osmosis filtration can help, the most effective solution is to stop water fluoridation
In 2019, 97% of countries in Western Europe were not adding fluoride to their water.1 While a handful use fluoridated salt, the majority do not. Yet, despite the lack of fluoridated water or salt in their diets, the rates of tooth decay have declined significantly in all the countries.2
In September 2021, Great Britain’s health secretary Sajid Javid announced he would be adding fluoride to all public water supplies,3 forcing citizens to consume the neurotoxin. The statement came in conjunction with approval by the United Kingdom’s chief medical officers from England, Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland.4
Paradoxically, his announcement comes one year after a consumers’ group in the U.S. filed a federal lawsuit challenging water fluoridation that supplies 200 million U.S. citizens. The suit was brought against the Environmental Protection Agency and would require water utilities to stop fluoridation.5
Fluoride is a naturally-occurring mineral in water and soil that scientists in the 1940s found might help prevent tooth decay.6 Water fluoridation began in the U.S. in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 1945 and other Michigan communities and then states adopted the practice in the years that followed.
Ninety-six percent of the fluoride7 used in U.S. water systems comes from apatite ore, the source of phosphate fertilizers. While the mineral’s composition also includes “high concentrations” of hydroxide, fluoride and chloride, the CDC calls the addition of this neurotoxic chemical “one of public health’s greatest success stories.”8 Yet, this “great success story” originates with highly toxic by-products in the production of fertilizer.9
The production process involves mixing the apatite with sulfuric acid derived from molten sulfur, which the American Water Works Association describes as “a waste product from cleaning petroleum feedstock.”10
Once the toxic vapors are converted to a dangerous liquid waste, it is transported from fertilizer factories to water reservoirs where it is added to drinking water.11 However, unlike pharmaceutical grade fluoride in toothpaste, this is “an untreated industrial waste product, one that contains trace elements of arsenic and lead.”12
Unfortunately, not many are aware of the effects fluoride has as a cradle-to-grave neurotoxin or the origin of the waste product added to the water supply. Although there has been some pushback against the proposal in the U.K.,13 Javid “is understood to be keen to press ahead with adding the mineral to the water supply and will gain powers to do so across England under laws going through parliament.”14
Despite Evidence of Danger, UK to Force Fluoridation
In a concerted effort to convince the public to accept the proposal, the U.K.’s chief medical officers came out together endorsing water fluoridation across the U.K. countries.15 In an effort to make it look like adding fluoride to the water is a benefit to U.K. citizens’ health, they added the proposal to legislation called “The Health and Care bill,”16 which is set to go before the MPs, which will then give Javid the authority needed to order fluoridation.17
In response to this, three British scientists sent a public letter to Great Britain’s prime minister, Boris Johnson. In the press release published from the U.K Freedom from Fluoride Alliance they write,18 “This is not a good time for the British government to mislead the public on the dangers posed by the practice of water fluoridation.”
The scientists believe that the statements from the chief medical officers from the four U.K. countries extol the weak benefits of fluoridation, but ignore stronger evidence that fluoride is a developmental neurotoxin. According to the scientists,19
“The dental lobby has controlled this debate for far too long. You can repair a damaged tooth but early damage to the brain (especially during fetal development and infancy) cannot be repaired or reversed.
This is so serious for the future of our country that the matter should not be resolved by the kind of ‘sleight of hand’ used by those who wrote the script for the CMOs’ statement.”
In their statement20 there are two short paragraphs that deal with the risk of fluoridation, which the scientists refer to as “sleight of hand.” Within the paragraphs, the CMOs do not mention the numerous studies demonstrating neurotoxicity and do not mention the lawsuit against the U.S. EPA. These points were made in their open letter to the prime minister in which they said they:21
“… sincerely hope that your health advisers will acknowledge the strong scientific evidence of fluoride’s neurotoxicity (and other ill health effects) and put the health of our people above promoting what appears to be a well-intended but clearly outdated practice of water fluoridation.
This would not be the first time that a well-entrenched medical or dental practice has had to give way to advances in scientific understanding of unexpected side effects.”
However, as reported in The Times,22 “Chris Whitty, the chief medical officer for England, has dismissed safety concerns over the compounds, saying there is no evidence that it causes cancer and that claims about health risks are ‘exaggerated and unevidenced’.”
Strong Evidence Fluoride Is Neurotoxic
One of the first studies demonstrating fluoride has an adverse effect on children’s IQ was originally published in 1989 in the Chinese Journal of Control of Endemic Diseases. Since then, the Fluoride Action Network23 has recorded dozens of studies that have analyzed the relationship between IQ and fluoride.
Of these, 70 human studies and 60 animal studies have demonstrated an association between exposure and a reduction in learning or memory capacity. The human studies had children and adult participants that provide compelling evidence of damage. The Fluoride Action Network also published an analysis of the challenges associated with the studies that did not find an association.24
Some of the strongest studies demonstrating an association were published in 2019 and 2020. The claims made by proponents of fluoridation that there is only “one or two studies” finding harm, or that they are only from areas with naturally high fluoride levels, are no longer relevant. The scientific evidence can now be considered overwhelming and undeniable. The studies include:
|Green 2019 — published in the Journal of the American Medical Association’s journal on Pediatrics.25 It reported substantial IQ loss in Canadian children from prenatal exposure to fluoride from water fluoridation.26|
|Riddell 2019 — published in Environment International.27 It found a shocking 284% increase in the prevalence of ADHD among children in fluoridated communities in Canada compared to nonfluoridated ones.28|
|Till 2020 — published in Environment International.29 It reported that children who were bottle-fed in Canadian fluoridated communities lost up to 8.8 IQ points compared to those in nonfluoridated communities.30|
|Uyghurturk 2020 — published in Environmental Health,31 It found that pregnant women in fluoridated communities in California had significantly higher levels of fluoride in their urine than those in nonfluoridated communities. The levels found in their urine were the same as those found to lower children’s IQ in past studies.32,33|
|Malin 2019 — published in Environmental Health.34 It linked a doubling of symptoms indicative of sleep apnea in adolescents in the U.S. to levels of fluoride in the drinking water. The link between fluoride and sleep disturbances may be through fluoride’s effect on the pineal gland.35|
|Malin 2019 — published in Environment International.36 It reported that exposure to fluoridated water led to a reduction in kidney and liver function among adolescents in the U.S. and suggested those with poorer kidney or liver function may absorb more fluoride bodies. The National Institutes of Health funded this study.37|
The level of evidence that fluoride is neurotoxic now far exceeds the evidence that was in place when lead was banned from gasoline. A recent review by Danish scientist, Harvard professor and neurotoxicity expert Dr. Philippe Grandjean also concluded that:38
“… there is little doubt that developmental neurotoxicity is a serious risk associated with elevated fluoride exposure, whether due to community water fluoridation, natural fluoride release from soil minerals, or tea consumption, especially when the exposure occurs during early development.
Given that developmental neurotoxicity is considered to cause permanent adverse effects, the next generation’s brain health presents a crucial issue in the risk-benefit assessment for fluoride exposure.”
Fluoride Is an Endocrine Disrupter That Affects the Brain
Evidence shows that fluoride as an endocrine disrupter affects both sleep and the brain. It contributes to the rising rate of children and adults with attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD). One study39 published in 2015 demonstrated that children with higher rates of medically diagnosed ADHD resided in states where there was a greater proportion of people consuming fluoridated water.
In 2006, the National Resource Council of the National Academies labeled fluoride an endocrine disruptor.40 According to the National Institutes of Health in 2014,41 “Research shows that endocrine disruptors may pose the greatest risk during prenatal and early postnatal development when organ and neural systems are forming.” The NIH has since removed that statement from their website.42
Exposure to fluoride is also linked to thyroid disease,43 which in turn contributes to heart disease, obesity, depression and other health problems. Fluoride has an adverse effect on sleep patterns. One study44 found chronic low-level exposure altered sleep patterns in adolescents aged 16 to 19.
They found fluoride levels of .52 mg per liter was associated with a 1.97 times higher likelihood of sleep apnea at least once per week. This level is lower than the current recommendation of 0.7 mg/L.45
The researchers theorized46 that the accumulation of fluoride in the pineal gland may affect sleep patterns. Additionally, the researchers wrote that in adults, fluoride concentrations in the pineal gland correlate with calcification, which in turn is associated with a decrease in melatonin production, lower sleep time and lower REM sleep percentage.
Health and Human Services Lowers Level of Fluoride in 2015
In 2010, a study47 published in the Journal of the American Dental Association concluded that there was an association between fluorosis and children’s teeth and intake from infant formula and other dietary sources. They wrote:
“Results suggest that prevalence of mild dental fluorosis could be reduced by avoiding ingestion of large quantities of fluoride from reconstituted powdered concentrate infant formula and fluoridated dentifrice.”
The CDC also followed suit in 2010, warning that mixing powdered or liquid infant formula with fluoridated water could increase the chance of a child developing enamel fluorosis.48 These recommendations have since been deleted.49
However, your teeth are the window to your bones, and when you see damage to your teeth you must ask the question: What kind of damage to your bones is occurring?
In April 2015, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services admitted the fluoride levels they had been promoting damaged children’s teeth.50 Major dental fluorosis was apparent in 41% of teenagers,51 which includes white spots, yellow coloring or pitted enamel.
Despite levels of fluoride that were high enough to cause fluorosis, the CDC52 also reported that 42% of children and adolescents ages 6 to 19 years and 90% of adults had cavities in their permanent teeth. Although some health experts continue to promote fluoride as protection against cavities, it’s apparently not doing the job.
Instead of completely removing fluoride from the water to protect bone health in 2015, the HHS announced they would simply reduce the level of fluoride in the water to minimize “the risk of cosmetic fluorosis in the general population.”53 To stress the idea that fluorosis is solely a cosmetic issue negates the potential risk to bone health.
By 2020, the American Dental Association was fully on board with fluoridating water in the U.S. In a letter54 to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, they noted their members agreed that the 2018 edition of Fluoridation Facts, the ADA’s resource on community water fluoridation, answered questions on the relationship between consumption and lowered intelligence or behavioral disorders.
Choosing to blatantly ignore all the studies showing fluoride is a dangerous neurotoxin, they stated, “The evidence from individual studies and systematic reviews does not support claims of a causal relationship.”55 Additionally, they urged that the National Toxicology Program Monograph on Fluoride Exposure and Neurodevelopmental and Cognitive Health should move its classification of fluoride from a “presumed” neurotoxin to an “unknown” neurotoxin.
Their justification for this was to claim:56 “There is not a wide body of literature examining fluoride as a potential neurotoxin.” In other words, 70 human and 60 animal studies were not enough to “support claims of a causal relationship” and is not a “wide body of literature examining fluoride as a potential neurotoxin.”
Help End the Practice of Water Fluoridation
What might be assumed from statements made by politicians and experts, is there is a greater concern over tooth decay than there is over loss of intelligence, brain health in adults and children and damage done through endocrine disruption.
For citizens in the U.K., a petition has been initiated in Parliament recommending that instead of adding fluoride to compel the entire nation to ingest a neurotoxin, “it would be better if people brush their teeth with toothpaste daily and monitor intake of sugar.”57
U.K. citizens can sign the petition at this link. If it reaches 100,000 signatures, Parliament must consider it for debate. For those who live in an area with fluoridated water, you can protect your health by filtering the water supply.
Because fluoride is a very small molecule, it’s difficult to filter once added, but reverse osmosis filtration can be effective.58 Clean pure water is a prerequisite for optimal health; thus, the only real solution is to stop the practice of artificial water fluoridation.