A major new fluoridation study was published today in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health–a British Medical Journal (BMJ) publication—and it’s already getting major media attention. The study, entitled “Are fluoride levels in drinking water associated with hypothyroidism prevalence in England? A large observational study of GP practice data and fluoride levels in drinking water,” is the first study to ever look at fluoridation and hypothyroidism in a large population (in this case, England). It found a relatively strong and statistically significant effect, with General Practice (GP) areas being 62% more likely to have high rates of diagnosed hypothyroidism if their drinking water fluoride levels were above 0.7ppm compared to areas with fluoride levels below 0.3ppm. This was after researchers had accounted for key confounders, which are other factors that influence hypothyroid rates.
In an additional comparison of two large metropolitan regions, one that is artificially fluoridated at a level of about 1.0 ppm (greater Birmingham area), and the other which is nearby and similar demographics but is not artificially fluoridated (greater Manchester), the study found a 94% greater probability that GPs in fluoridated Birmingham would have high hypothyroidism rates compared to Manchester.
For all of England, the prevalence rate of hypothyroidism was almost 10% greater in.those GPs with higher fluoride levels compared to those with lowest levels .
The findings led to the researchers calling for a “rethink of public health policy to fluoridate the water supply,” adding “consideration needs to be given to reducing fluoride exposure, and public dental health interventions should stop [those] reliant on ingested fluoride and switch to topical fluoride-based and non-fluoride-based interventions.”
According to FAN’s Science Director, Chris Neurath, “Scientific and medical research stretching back to the 1920s has shown that fluoride can affect the thyroid. The levels of fluoride exposure known to lower thyroid function overlap with the levels of exposure known to occur in some people drinking artificially fluoridated water. Hypothyroidism is a very common disorder in the US. It can have serious adverse health effects. Reduced thyroid function in pregnant women is linked to reduced IQ in their children. There is accumulating evidence that fluoride, at levels within the range fluoridated populations are exposed to, is associated with lowered IQ. Fluoride’s effect on thyroid function might be the mechanism by which it lowers IQ.”
The article notes that “thyroid dysfunction is a common endocrine disorder…” The first time fluoride was labeled an endocrine disrupter was in the 2006 report of the National Resource Council of the National Academies. According to the National Institutes of Health, “Research shows that endocrine disruptors may pose the greatest risk during prenatal and early postnatal development when organ and neural systems are forming.” As far as we know, promoters pushing fluoridation have never referred to this ominous label.
Please help FAN make this study go viral. Please share the press release and study with your local media outlets, your local decision-makers, and on your social media pages. Also please stay tuned for further FAN coverage of this study and the media attention it’s gaining.
For more information, please also see:
- The published papers on thyroid on FAN’s Study Tracker
- Some of the media articles that reported this on February 24:
–The Telegraph, Fluoride in drinking water may trigger depression and weight gain, warn scientists
–Newsweek, Water fluoridation may increase risk of underactive thyroid disorder
–The Yorkshire Post, Fluoride in water increases risk of thyroid illness ‘by 30 per cent’
–Boots WebMD (Boots is the largest pharmacy in the UK), Scientists call for rethink on fluoride in water
–The Telegraph, The extent of water fluoridation in the UK
Fluoride Action Network