Fluoride – a saga (part two)

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Image: http://openparachute.wordpress.com/2013/07/03/fluoridation-the-violation-of-rights-argument/

Its unfortunate that simple fluoride has become controversial. Its a mute topic, never has any confirmed-evidence of fluoridated water causing harm emerged. In fact all the ‘evidence’ has in been in the form of internet memes. Meme: a pairing of pictures and words in which one party must humorously or shockingly complement the other. But I’m sure these are not that sort, these would be highly respectable works of scientific rigour which have stood the tests of time and countless challenges, no? Ah they must have just run out of time for all that, maybe they’re just desperate.

A good example of this is the commonly circulated meme of the ‘toxic if ingested’ label of a highly concentrated bottle of fluoride solution, the caption tries to recruit readers to campaign against their local fluoridation authority. The problem here is that too much of any nutrient will kill us, and that the bottle has many times over the limit for fluoride intake compared with our water supplies. Another silly piece of pseudo-evidence is a ‘land-mark’ Harvard meta-analysis article , often cited as proof that fluoridation affects the brain and lowers the IQ of children. I feel sorry for these authors whose hard work has been taken completely out of context.

The blatant disregard for science by lobbyists is unsurprising when the groups have shown how low they are willing to go, making death threats to the NSW health minister and the NSW chief medical officer while heckling them as they arrived to give evidence at a local council enquiry. These acts and the materials produced show a true ignorance of scientific rigour and a lack of respect for the transparency of the scientific and medical communities. The main anti-fluoride theories are listed below, along with the reasons for their inaccuracies.

The Free Will Arguement

Theorists blame parents uneducated or uncaring of their child’s dental hygiene for ‘mass medication’ of ‘toxic’ fluoride. This obviously appeals to a certain type of person who has a particular dislike of a welfare state. This theory has been tested countless times in US courts but never been won.

The Mind Control Arguement

Now comes the most absurd, that our very minds can be altered using fluoride, that water fluoridation is a form of government control with its roots in Nazi Germany. It’s said that IG Farben, producer of dyes and industrial chemicals fundamental to Nazi Germany’s success was also involved in polluting enemy countries water supply with fluoride to cause “slight damage to a specific part of the brain” making drinkers docile. There is of course no evidence for this, in fact history would have shown masses of people in countries surrounding Germany becoming zombified. Looking at other available evidence (science, physiology and anatomy) we see that there is no biological credibility to this theory as the pineal gland has nothing to do with behaviour.

The Invention Arguement.

That water fluoridation was invented by chemical companies to get rid of waste product (fluorides), but also raise money. This theory usually involves the chemical companies concocting fake science to show its effect on tooth decay so that they can flog it off to local governments. Yes, most fluoride comes from industry as it provides a cheap, sustainable and dependable supply, but there is nothing more to this theory.

A popular and persevering theory is that of Christopher Bryson author of “The Fluoride Deception” which is grounded in the above ‘invention’ theory. Bryson also questions the mechanism for action in preventing tooth decay, not directly but deeper within the body where he believes there is damage being done. The book uses logical, intelligent, and convincing arguments. For instance; do you know how much fluoride you’re exposed to, does your dentist? The answer is generally no, but I’ll hazard a guess and say it doesn’t much matter due to the ease fluoride’s removal from the body and its safety. The book draws you in with command of the descriptive language and hyperbole, once captive the arguments presented don’t seem half bad but only until you close the book and leave the author’s world.

TBC

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Bye for now.

Jack

Please remember that I’m a dietetics STUDENT, so none of my opinions should be trusted! PLEASE consult an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD) or your GP before applying anything discussed in this blog to your diet or exercise regime

Lower Energy BIG brekkie – scrambled eggs, sausage and cooked tomato.

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I love this brekkie! Its quick easy and filling. Cooked tomatoes might have some people turn away either for the taste/texture or for diminished nutrition, but I love it and thats what matters.

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In terms of nutrition, sure some of the nutritive value will be lost, but that doesnt mean that these tomatoes don’t have anything to give. Ultimately its important to eat food that YOU enjoy, prepared the way that YOU like it. 

 

This is why dieting is so hard, people think that they must obey the food gods who whisper gospel into their sleeping doctor or dietitians ear. But this isn’t my idea of dieting at all, its not even about food really. If you can look at your lifestyle and feel good, knowing that your keeping your body in check then good. If not then a dietitian or psychologist will work with you on lifestyle factors and the way you live to match this with foods relevant and healthy to you. So food doesn’t really come into it until the end, once all the other work is done, for me its really the boring bit which should come easily when a person has accepted a new way of life without abandoning who they are. 

 

What does dieting mean to you?

 

Ingredients

2 large or 3 small tomatoes

2 Vegie sausage

4 slices of heavy multigrain grain bread

2 eggs

1/4 Cup skim milk

Herbs and spices (I used oregano, sage, and paprika)

 

 

Method

In a bowl add eggs, then milk and whisk. Add herbs and spices/

Heat a pan then spray cooking spray for 3 seconds. Add egg mix. Stir to prevent sticking. 

Once eggs are cooked set aside and using the same pan brown the sausages (cut lengthways) and tomato (very thickly sliced).

Assemble on toast and garnish.

*Serves 2 * 

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Until next time 

Jack

 

Please remember that I’m a dietetics STUDENT, so none of my opinions should be trusted! PLEASE consult an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD) or your GP before applying anything discussed in this blog to your diet or exercise regime

Fluoride – a saga (part one).

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Image: http://www.deardoctor.com/articles/fluoride-in-dentistry/

Ruin a night of food, wine, and fun with lively discussion about the placement of traffic lights and speeding cameras, about obesity and government responsibility or even about private vs public schooling (my favourite). These topics are offer far more productive discussion, I’m not saying that you’ll be singing kumbayah but at least some of your guests might walk away enlightened to the merits in your view (and you in their’s). The fluoride debate on the other hand will get you nowhere.

Better topics serve in the outcome of their debate and in our enjoyment. Each night we watch politicians stumble over a barrage of questions that they have no hope in answering; and really who wants that fun to stop? Current affair shows such as 7:30 and QandA are great, most of the time its like watching apes learning quantum mechanics through interpretive dance. The polly always tries his or her best to act with grace and poise but they usually slip up and say something idiotic (much to my pleasure). I’m sure there’s a handler of theirs just off-screen with a cracker waving it too and fro and trying to keep them on track.

Put bluntly this nutrient doesn’t do enough (yes it’s a nutrient now) and is easily removed from the body. That’s right, no need to detox* like some conspiracists believe. The mechanisms for its removal are well understood simple concepts for biologists (you may just have to take my word for it). Proving this point, scientists have measured the fluoride our body loses (faeces, urine, and sweat) and accounted for the amount stored in our bones then balanced this with our intake to show that there are no large harmful depositions anywhere in the body. Loss + Stored (bone) = Intake.

*Sidenote: There is never a good time to detox since our bodies are detoxing machines, they’ve got our back’s and don’t like us to help*. Our consciousness is like that skinny lanky kid from your childhood football or netball team, the one who can’t catch but tries really really hard. Better for the body to do its thing, while you do yours (*unless our kidney’s fail).

Anyway digs at politicians aside, people really need to start giving fluoride a break! Or at least the few causing all the fuss and capturing our attention with conspiracy theories with little or no scientific backing. Here’s a list of all the best sources I could find on the topic, notice how none of them say that fluoride can accumulate in our brains causing cancer or mind control.

The real danger really is the momentum that these lobbyists can produce with cheap social media, because not only are they raising awareness for their cause (which I find admirable), but they try to educate at the same time (using wacky pseudoscience). The result is high impact hyperbole describing Fluoride as an invented substance that we must detoxify ourselves of, lest we get brain cancer, kidney damage, damage to our very DNA, gastrointestinal damage, become mind controlled emotionless zombies, or god-forbid have greater protection from tooth decay (yeah its pretty magical).

While people with a basic knowledge of biology probably have a good laugh about how ridiculous the claims are, your average non-science person may be a little unsure, especially their evidence can be convincing at first glance.

TBC

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Bye for now.

Jack

Please remember that I’m a dietetics STUDENT, so none of my opinions should be trusted! PLEASE consult an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD) or your GP before applying anything discussed in this blog to your diet or exercise regime