Monday, October 13, 2014

Paranoia in The Irish Times When it Comes to Water Fluoridation

It is unfortunate that in the eyes of Mr. Donald Clarke, according to his entertaining column (Pouring cold water on anti-fluoridation arguments, 11th October 2014,) any scientist or public health professional who raises genuine concerns regarding fluoridation are to be branded paranoids and rabble rousers. Mr. Clarke's comments belong in the dark ages, similar views were expressed by the establishment when Galileo was sent to the inquisition for affirming that the earth was not flat. Contrary to Mr Clarke's opinion, evidence suggests that the only paranoia  with which the public should be genuinely concerned surrounding fluoridation, is that expressed by those who refuse to heed the many concerns of so many respected medical, dental and scientific professionals who have dared to question this indiscriminate policy of mass intoxication over the past 60 years. 

Two recent reports published in scientific journals raise serious concerns that if Mr. Clarke had his way would be ignored by the establishment to the detriment of public health.

In 2014, the peer reviewed journal Toxicology, published the findings of a study which reported that fluoride dramatically increased medial vascular calcification and the effect was induced using the WHO’s recommended concentration of fluoride in drinking water [1]. The authors concluded that fluoride causes this effect, by impairing renal function and exacerbating renal damage. The report noted that it is now accepted that medial vascular calcification contributes to an elevated risk of the cardiovascular mortality of patients with advanced chronic kidney disease, diabetes, and aging. The authors noted that in patients with chronic kidney disease, renal excretion of fluoride is impaired, and therefore the plasma concentration of fluoride is increased, thereby further damaging the kidneys, aggravating chronic kidney disease, and generating an increase of uremic toxins and medial vascular calcification. In lay-man’s terms, uremic toxins are compounds that exert an adverse biologic impact contributing to impaired kidney function [2], while medial vascular calcification is increased vessel stiffening which increases the risk of myocardial infarction, the medical term for heart attack. In ending, given the prevalence of chronic kidney disease in the total global population and considering that the epidemic of diabetes mellitus, the authors cautioned, “that the use of fluoride to improve the dental health of the population through indiscriminate practices, such as adding it  to municipal drinking water, should be reconsidered and should be replaced by a fluoridation policy based on the health status of individuals.”

This view is supported in another recent scientific publication (February 2014), titled “Water Fluoridation: A Critical Review of the Physiological Effects of Ingested Fluoride as a Public Health Intervention”  by Professor Stephan Peckham and Professor Niyi Awofeso [3]. Prof Peckham is Director of the Centre for Health Services Studies at University of Kent and Dr.  Niyi Awofeso is a former Professor in the School of Population Health, University of Western Australia. In this review the authors reported “that available evidence suggests that fluoride has a potential to cause major adverse human health problems, while having only a modest dental caries prevention effect” and concluded that “coordinated global efforts to reduce adverse human health effects on fluoride need to start with ensuring that its introduction into water supplies is prohibited”.  

In ending, contrary to the misinformation in a recent letter published in the Irish Times by  Mr. Richard Cormican (Oct 10th 2014) and previously stated in an opinion piece by Dr. David Robert Grimes ( Sept  9th 2013), your readers should be correctly informed that fluoride is not a nutrient. Neither the European Commission, the United States Institute of Medicine, the  United States National Academy of Sciences, the United States Food and Drug Adminstration, the United States Public Health Services, nor the British Medical Journal agree that fluoride is an essential nutrient. Most recently, in 2013, the European Food Safety Authority reported that “Fluoride has no known essential function in human growth and development and no signs of fluoride deficiency have ever been identified [4].”

It would be helpful in this debate if the Irish Times accurately reported these findings so as not to further contribute to the level of paranoia in Irish Society regarding water fluoridation.

 Declan Waugh

[1]  A. Martín-Pardillos et al. / Toxicology: 318 (2014) 40–50)
[2]  Vanholder R, De Smet R: Pathophysiologic effects of uremic retention solutes. J Am Soc Nephrol 10 : 1815 –1823, 1999
[3]  Peckham S., Awofeso Niyi. Water Fluoridation: A Critical Review of the Physiological Effects of Ingested Fluoride as a Public Health Intervention, The Scientific World Journal Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 293019.
 [4] Scientific Opinion on Dietary Reference Values for fluoride, European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), EFSA Journal 2013;11(8):3332

1 comment:

  1. Well said. Will The Irish Times publish this?