For decades, fluoride has been considered the “knight in shining armor” in the battle against tooth decay. Children were encouraged to brush their teeth with fluoride, and it was even added to the public water supply. In 2008, an estimated 62% of the US population were receiving fluoridated water. However, over time it became apparent that fluoride is not the natural safe supplement that most people were led to believe.
Excessive fluoride has been linked to stained and mottled teeth along with a variety of chronic and acute health issues. Let’s find out more about this possibly harmful soluble salt.
What is Fluoride?
There are two types of fluoride: calcium fluoride and sodium fluoride. When taken in excess, both types can be harmful to health.
Calcium fluoride is found naturally in underground waters sources. In sufficient concentrations, it can actually weaken bones and teeth rather than protecting them. However, it is less toxic and damaging to health than its counterpart.
Sodium fluoride is much more insidious. Created as a synthetic waste byproduct from the fertilizer, aluminum and nuclear industries, this type of fluoride is added to many public water supplies. Already laden with lead, aluminum and cadmium, sodium fluoride has the ability to combine with other toxic materials and increase their potency. Far from healthy, the side effects of taking fluoride may have far-reaching negative effects on health as you will see, yet until recently it was advocated by both the American Dental Association and the US Public Health Service.
What does Fluoride Affect?
Fluoride, particularly sodium fluoride, has been found to weaken the immune system and can damage the kidneys and liver. Symptoms of sodium fluoride toxicity are similar to fibromyalgia, including fatigue, muscle pain, memory loss and insomnia. It can also cause nausea, diarrhea, sickness, abdominal pain and increased thirst.
Worse still, sodium fluoride acts as a “Trojan horse”, carrying aluminum across the blood brain barrier where it can be responsible for lower IQ and Alzheimer’s disease. Once in the brain, fluoride can calcify the pineal gland which is responsible for the natural production of melatonin. Without sufficient melatonin, the body is deprived of sound sleep and the thyroid will not function correctly.
How to Avoid Fluoride
Even in areas where sodium fluoride has not been added to the water, it may still be part of your daily diet. Fluoride is used as a pesticide and fumigant and is sprayed onto food crops. It is a component of home insecticides and is even added to bottled water, toothpaste and baby foods. Crops watered by fluoride-laden water are even more heavily contaminated, yet as consumers we have no control over what we are buying and consuming.
Some steps towards curbing your fluoride intake can be taken. Drinking purified or distilled water is recommended if you live in an area of fluoridated water, although all minerals are then removed which is not altogether a good thing for your overall health. Consider taking a supplement of Fulvic acid to counter this issue. Installing a water purification or fluoride filtering system to your home is well worth considering. It is worth noting that Brita and Pur water filters do not remove fluoride.
Choose organically grown local produce over commercially grown, sprayed crops. Avoid processed foods such as grape juice products, instant tea and even soymilk as they all contain high levels of sodium fluoride, as do many over-the-counter medications.
How to Detox Your Body of Fluoride
As well as taking in less fluoride, you need to detox your body to eliminate existing fluoride.
Exercise is good, allowing the body to eliminate all types of toxins, including fluoride, from the body in sweat. I’ve put together a workout plan that I personally use (Burst Training Plan).
Tamarind is commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine. The pulp, bark and leaves are used to make teas, which have been shown to eliminate fluoride through urine.
Magnesium is a useful supplement as it inhibits the absorption of fluoride into the cells. Boron is known to be an effective way to detox fluoride. It can be added to pure water in small amounts of around 1/32 to ¼ teaspoon per liter.
Iodine has been clinically shown to increase the amount of fluoride in urine, expelling it from the body as calcium fluoride. However, this may be depriving your body of calcium so make sure that you take calcium supplements to counter this problem.
Liver cleanses are very effective for eliminating not only fluoride but also other toxins that congregate in the liver. Take a product that thoroughly cleanses the liver over one to two weeks for maximum effectiveness. Chelation therapies are also recommended for removing heavy metals for the body along with sodium fluoride.