Fluoride Action Network

AGAINST: Negative health effects (2nd of 12 articles in series)

Source: The Star (Dunedin) | February 28th, 2008 | By Bruce Munro
Location: New Zealand

FLUORIDE in water can cause lower intelligence and chronic fatigue – so why would you want to put it in your body? Asks Dr Bruce Spittle

Dr Spittle is Dunedin’s and probably New Zealand’s, leading anti-fluoride campaigner. A psychiatrist and lecturer by profession, Dr Spittle became an opponent of fluoridation after hearing Dr John Colquhoun speak in Mosgiel in 1989.

“He was the man who introduced fluoridation to Auckland and then spent the last 10 years of his life trying to get rid of it,” Dr Spittle said.

Now retired to Brighton, where he has installed a reverse osmosis filter to remove the fluoride from his water supply, Dr Spittle still serves as the managing editor of Fluoride, the quarterly journal of the International Society for Fluoride Research.

There are no advantages to fluoridation, for those who consume it, he says.

“The only advantage is for the polluters who produce it – it helps them get rid of it.”

And the disadvantages?

Many, Dr Spittle says.

Fluoride is implicated in medical conditions ranging from headaches and muscle weakness to memory loss and depression, he says.

Of significance, is fluoride’s effect on brain development in babies.

“It is unsafe for babies because it is a toxic substance which can effect the development of the brain. It can impair intelligence.”

It also has an undesirable effect on the thyroid gland of young people and adults.

The thyroid gland produces the hormone thyroxine which is required for the proper function of all parts of the body including muscles, brain and stomach. Fluoride, which interferes with the hormone, used to be prescribed to treat hyper-thyroidism.

“It was prescribed at a dosage of 2mg to 5mg of fluoride per day

“But, these days, people are getting that level from their diet and their water.

And it is not the concentration of fluoride in water that is important, it is the dosage, Dr. Spittle says.

“The average New Zealander is getting about 4mg of fluoride per day – 3 mg from food and 1 mg from water – according to fluoride proponent Dr Terry Cutress in his radio interview with Kim Hill.”

“But that has been shown to be enough to cause the first stage of skeletal fluorosis – a tyype of arthritis.”