Friday, March 28, 2014

STUDY: Infants at Risk from Hidden Fluoride Exposure in Commercial Foods


According to a new study published in the journal General Dentistry infants are at risk of dental fluorosis due to overexposure from fluoride in commercially available infant foods.

The researchers analyzed 360 different samples of 20 different foods ranging from fruits and vegetables, chicken, turkey, beef, and vegetarian dinners. All of the foods tested had detectable amounts of fluoride ranging from .007-4.13 micrograms of fluoride per gram of food. Chicken products had the highest concentrations of fluoride, followed by turkey.

The New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation (NYSCOF) reports that the fluoride levels were due to pesticides, fertilizers, soil, groundwater, and/or fluoridated water. The high levels found in the chicken and turkey can be attributed to “fluoride-saturated bone dust” involved in the process of mechanically separating the meat.

Based on the study, consuming more than one serving per day of the high fluoride concentration foods would put children beyond the recommended daily fluoride intake. Babies given high amounts of fluoride can experience white spotted, yellow, brown or pitted teeth, known as dental fluorosis. An excessive intake of fluoride can also lead to acute fluoride toxicity. Since the symptoms of toxicity mimic other common illnesses such as the flu or upset stomach many people may not recognize fluoride as the culprit.

According to the Journal of Public Health Dentistry:

Estimating the incidence of toxic fluoride exposures nationwide also is complicated by the existence of biases. Parents or caregivers may not notice the symptoms associated with mild fluoride toxicity or may attribute them to colic or gastroenteritis, particularly if they did not see the child ingest fluoride. Similarly, because of the nonspecific nature of mild to moderate symptoms, a physician’s differential diagnosis is unlikely to include fluoride toxicity without a history of fluoride ingestion. Shulman JD, Wells LM. (1997). Acute fluoride toxicity from ingesting home-use dental products in children, birth to 6 years of age. Journal of Public Health Dentistry 57: 150-8.

The Institute of Medicine recommends children 2 to 3 years old only receive fluoride up to .7 mg from all sources. Even if a parent does give their child less than .7 mg of fluoride through their toothpaste (assuming no more is swallowed) it would be rather difficult to avoid the many other sources of fluoride presently found in the United States, primarily through municipal water supplies.


As soon as a parent washes their child’s mouth with sink water they have just increased their child’s chance of acute fluoride toxicity. Add a soda, canned food, shower, or infant food into the mix (all sources of fluoride) and you have an overexposure to the substance and possibility of acute fluoride toxicity. With the American Dental Association recently recommending fluoride toothpaste to children at the first sight of a tooth, it would seem difficult for a parent to guarantee amount of fluoride their child is receiving from such varied sources.

The substances added to municipal water supplies known by the name fluoride are actually a combination of unpurified by products of phosphate mining, namely hydrofluorosilicic acid, sodium fluorosilicate, and sodium fluoride. In the United States thousands of tons of fluorosilicic acid is recovered from phosphoric acid plants and then used for water fluoridation. During this process the fluoride ion is created.

This process of taking waste from the phosphate industry and putting it into drinking water has long been criticized for it’s effects on human health, and that of the environment. It is well known that water fluoridation has led to dental fluorosis for millions of children. This discoloring of the teeth was called “cosmetically objectionable” by the Centers for Disease Control. Beyond the cosmetic effect there have been a number of studies indicating health issues ranging from arthritis, brain problems,reduced thyroid or overactive thyroid, kidney problems and bone cancers.

While proponents of water fluoridation have long pointed to an apparent drop in tooth decay in fluoridated nations as proof of it’s validity, those claims have been proven wrong by the World Health Organization. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has stated the fluoride in the water is directly related to better teeth quality however, the WHO released it’s own study showing that tooth decay rates have dropped in all western nations, whether fluoridated or not.


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