Cauliflower might prove a panacea in solving health disorders arising due to fluoride intoxication. Fluorosis is a major health issue in India and as per estimates of National Programme for Prevention and Control of Fluorosis nearly 2.5 lakh [250,000 million] suspected cases of dental and skeletal fluorosis exist in India, including 33,721 cases in Telangana itself.
One of the ways fluoride affects human health is by hampering the functioning of the thyroid gland, which in turn can affect many organs in the body. The study undertaken by M Raghavendra, assistant professor at Malla Reddy College of Pharmacy found that extracts from cauliflower leaf might prove an effective solution in negating the impact on the thyroid gland.
For his study, six rats were intoxicated with fluoride resulting in an abnormal rise in the levels of hormones thyroxine and triiodothyronine in the blood of these rats.
However, when cauliflower leaf extract was injected in the fluoride intoxicated rats in the dosage of 200 milligrammes per kilogramme body weight of the rats for a period of 30 days, the thyroxine and triiodothyronine levels in them came down to the level of normal healthy rats.
Thyroxine and triiodothyronine are important hormones produced by the thyroid gland and are essential for proper development of all cells in the body and also in the regulation of protein, fat and carbohydrate metabolism.
So what made Raghavendra choose cauliflower leaf for the study? He says, “Cauliflower is an easily available and cheap vegetable. While the vegetable is eaten, its leaf is discarded by people. However, the study shows how nutritious the leaf actually is. If further tests are conducted and it is proven that the leaf extract is effective in fluoride affected humans too, it would prove very useful as many people in the country are under risk of fluorosis.”