At Town Meeting on March 25, there is a vote to start the process of looking at fluoride in Lincoln water. Lincoln started fluoridation in 1971. I believe it is time to revisit this and see if we would like to continue.
My path from a place of not thinking too much about fluoride to spending lots of time educating myself about it, started with reading the book by Chris Bryson, “The Fluoride Deception.” I read it several years ago, straight through as it reads like a thriller, which in a way it is. Then I moved on to learning more about fluoride in Lincoln water, because I wasn’t interested in the possibility of exposing my son, or anyone else’s son to osteosarcoma which Elise Bassin had showed a fluoride link to in her 2001 Harvard research. (Yes, I know there is a story there.)
Instead of stopping at the gate that says fluoride is good for you and nothing else is relevant, I began to search the web, staying mostly with peer-reviewed scientific literature and publications from the Environmental Working Group and the library of Fluoride Action Network and others, all of which are supported by serious research, the science of teeth, fluoride, bones, heart and whatever else I could read. Once you step out of the land where fluoride is good for your teeth full stop and nothing but — you confront the following. Research and probability that fluoride affects the thyroid gland, the heart, the collagen in the body, the bones, the enzymes, the bacteria load in the intestines, the villi, your digestion. Some of the research comes from outside the United States, from countries for whom it is an absolute necessity to understand the effects of fluoride, countries where there is a lot of fluoride in the water and a lot of related health issues. Outside the U.S. where researchers and medical experts are not vilified for taking the view that we need to understand what fluoride is doing in the rest of the body besides the teeth, although the topic of teeth itself is interesting.
We are now in a period of history where acid rain which contains fluoride, and fertilizer runoff and pesticide runoff are polluting the groundwater and adding fluoride to it. Exposures to fluoride include toothpaste, rinses, our town water, pesticide residues on vegetables, nuts, fruits, drinks and soups, anything made commercially with water and preparations that use fluoridated water in their manufacture, to name a few.
The CDC now says that baby formula should not be prepared with fluoridated water. Kidney dialysis patients should not drink fluoridated water at all. They don’t use it in dialysis centers. Fluoride causes or accelerates osteoporosis in the elderly and is now linked to possible brain issues such as IQ and Alzheimer’s through the bond between fluoride and aluminum.
I say all these things because they are part of the path of discovery I have been on. I can hear the response that it is all crazy and not real, that there is no proof but you only have to step outside the current paradigm and start looking. Researchers around the world are not all to a man crazy people. There is a serious interest out there to understand this most volatile of the elements, this among the smallest of the elements that takes on all but two of the enzymes in the body. When you look at the sheer complexity of bone structure and realize it is genetically dictated based on the design in the DNA and some master plan, it is folly to assume that this most energetic of elements passes through the body without harming anything or changing anything, particularly when you recognize dental fluorosis — the pitting, striation and coloring of the enamel of teeth — for what it is. It isn’t normal and just an acceptable cosmetic cost of fluoride. It is a sign you are getting more fluoride than you should. And we are now, with all our exposure, getting far more than we should. We cannot control how much water each person, large and small, old and young, drinks and yet we vote to medicate each other as if we are all the same with the same water consumption.
The petition to visit the vote on water fluoridation will be on the warrant at Town Meeting this March 25. It behooves us as humans and as a town to take this seriously. Ask yourself, do you really want to put medication in the water that effects each of us differently, that may make someone else sick because of their individual response to it? Especially when you can get fluoride in your toothpaste, or from your dentist, or in the little pills that you can choose to get for your children yourself? I know we have been led to believe that fluoride is the best thing ever, but after it touches your teeth, it is not. And most of it goes down the drain anyway with your dishes and your laundry water, back into the soil where it binds with the earth and comes back in the plants. If you really want to bathe your teeth in fluoride, drink tea every day, without milk.
There will be a presentation March 9, 2-4 p.m. in the public library. Please join us. There is more.
Moira Donnell, Old Concord Road, is the owner of Lindentree Farm in Lincoln.