Sunday, January 18, 2015

Lebanon: No to salt and water fluoridation

The effects of fluoride have been controversial for a very long time. But as the number of studies into the toxic effects of fluoride has increased, there is now support for a rather long list of potential health problems related to fluoride accumulation in our body.

An ongoing petition in Lebanon is demanding that the Health Ministry permanently repeal and delete Law 178 of 2011 that was supposed to have been signed into law last month mandating that all table and kitchen salt in Lebanon be fluoridated.

According to a 500-page long scientific review, fluoride is an endocrine disruptor that can affect our bones, brain, thyroid gland, pineal gland, and even our blood sugar levels.

Forty-two human studies have also linked moderately high fluoride exposures with reduced intelligence, and over 100 animal studies have shown that fluoride exposure can cause brain damage. Most striking among these are 30 (out of a total of 32 investigations) that have shown that fluoride lowered the ability of animals to learn and remember. The following list contains 20 of the most commonly mentioned health hazards and diseases associated with fluoride exposure.

From "The Fluoride Deception"
I learnt about fluoride's harms through my friend Yelena at work and stopped using toothpaste with fluoride more than two years ago. Luckily I found a non-fluoride brand in one of the local supermarkets and have been using it since. As for salt, I deleted that from my diet more than 30 years ago and have not looked back since.

The World Health Organization (WHO) says “ingestion of excess fluoride, most commonly in drinking-water, can cause fluorosis which affects the teeth and bones. Moderate amounts lead to dental effects, but long-term ingestion of large amounts can lead to potentially severe skeletal problems. Paradoxically, low levels of fluoride intake help to prevent dental caries. The control of drinking-water quality is therefore critical in preventing fluorosis… caused by excessive intake of fluoride…

“Chronic high-level exposure to fluoride can lead to skeletal fluorosis. In skeletal fluorosis, fluoride accumulates in the bone progressively over many years. The early symptoms of skeletal fluorosis, include stiffness and pain in the joints. In severe cases, the bone structure may change and ligaments may calcify, with resulting impairment of muscles and pain…

“Acute high-level exposure to fluoride causes immediate effects of abdominal pain, excessive saliva, nausea and vomiting. Seizures and muscle spasms may also occur…”

The petition to Lebanon's Health Ministry says:

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The Lebanese government issued Law 178 dated 2011 to be implemented in December 2014, mandating that ALL TABLE AND KITCHEN SALT in Lebanon be fluoridated.

Luckily, Public Health Minister Mr. Wael Abou Faour hasn't signed this Law yet, and so FOR NOW, it will not be implemented.

HOWEVER, Law 178 MUST BE REPEALED and DELETED PERMANENTLY in order to avoid having it REINSTATED at any point in the future by the current or future Health Minister!

According to the latest scientific studies, FLUORIDE has not only been deemed inefficient to combat tooth decay, but is has serious health implications if consumed.

Here are some of the facts on FLUORIDE that you must know:

1. Fluoridated Countries Do Not Have Less Tooth Decay Than Non-Fluoridated Countries: According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there is no discernible difference in tooth decay between developed countries that fluoridate their water and those that do not. In fact, tooth decay is due primarily to poor dietary and dental care habits.

2. Fluoride Affects Many Tissues in Your Body Besides Your Teeth: Fluoride is an endocrine disruptor that can affect your bones, brain, thyroid gland, pineal gland and blood sugar levels. Over 34 human studies and 100 animal studies have linked fluoride to brain damage, including lower IQ in children, as well as a wide variety of health problems such as bone fractures, thyroid disease, muscle disorders, etc.

3. Fluoridation is Not a “Natural” Process: Even if fluoride could be naturally occurring in some areas, leading to high levels in certain natural water supplies, naturally occurring substances are not automatically safe. Furthermore, the fluoride added to most water -- and in this case, salt -- supplies is not the naturally occurring variety; it's actually fluorosilicic acid, captured in air pollution control devices of the phosphate fertilizer industry!

4. Forty percent of Teenagers Show Visible Signs of Fluoride Overexposure: About 40 percent of teens have dental fluorosis, a condition that refers to changes in the appearance of tooth enamel that are caused by long-term ingestion of fluoride during the time teeth are forming. This is a sign that children are receiving large amounts of fluoride from multiple sources, not only from drinking water but also fluoride toothpaste, processed beverages/foods, fluoride pesticides, tea, non-stick pans and some fluoridated drugs! Dental fluorosis is NOT "just cosmetic." It can also be an indication that the rest of your body, such as your bones and internal organs, including your brain, have been overexposed to fluoride as well!

5. For Infants, Fluoridated Water Provides No Benefits, Only Risks: Infants who consume formula made with fluoridated tap water may consume up to 1,200 micrograms of fluoride, or about 100 times more than the recommended amounts! Not only are they more likely to develop dental fluorosis, but they may also have reduced IQ scores, as found by a Harvard University meta-analysis.

6. Fluoride Supplements Have Never Been Approved by the FDA

7. Fluoride is the Only Medicine Added to Public Water: Fluoride is added to drinking water and salt to prevent a disease (tooth decay), and as such becomes a medicine by FDA definition. Many European nations have rejected fluoride for the very reason that delivering medication via the water supply would be inappropriate. Water and salt fluoridation is a form of mass medication that denies you the right to informed consent!

8. Swallowing Fluoride Provides Little Benefit to Teeth: The US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has acknowledged that adding fluoride to water, salt, and pills, which are swallowed, offers no benefit to your teeth. Only topical contact with teeth could offer some benefit to them.

In conclusion, it is not surprising that most developed countries DO NOT fluoridate their salt and water.

As health-conscious consumers, we demand that our government does not mass-medicate us without our consent! We have the right to know and decide what we want to consume, especially when it comes to such a hazardous non-nutrient and non-essential additive.

And so we urge you to help REPEAL and DELETE this Law PERMANENTLY at the risk of it being forced upon the Lebanese community at any point in the future.

For more information about the dangers of fluoride and the 2014 Lebanese anti-FLUORIDE campaign, please check out this Facebook Page:

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The petition created by Yasmine K, is supported by Lebanon’s The WellnessProject presented by the House of Chi.

TheWellness Project aims at raising awareness among the general public, and professionals of the field, by making available to them the latest information in complimentary and traditional healthcare, holistic medicine and environmental health as well as hosting international and local guest speakers in their respective fields of healthcare.