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Wednesday, October 31, 2018

NBC's Fact-Challenged Fluoridation Article Raises Questions


A well-done article draws complaints from both sides of an issue covered. But fluoridation proponents are enthralled with a recent viral NBC News article which appears to be influenced (or partially written) by the fluoridation lobby’s PR company. It is one-sided slanderous propaganda piece that is misguided and, too often, just plain wrong.

Conspiracy theory attackers - hold your fire.  This email exchange on twitter raises serious concerns.

(Protagonists in this story: Johnny Johnson is the President of a fluoridation advocacy group
Liz Shawen is a PR representative of the Moore Agency which counts the Florida Dental Association as one of its clients. @echuckles is the twitter account of Elizabeth Chuck who, without a science background, "wrote" the NBC News fluoridation article.)

Liz Shawen Retweeted NBC News
Great reporting by @echuckles on Brooksville FL fluoridation vote, the evidence backing the safety/efficacy of fluoridation, & the controversy that still surrounds it in spite of this. Love working w/ passionate advocate and expert @drjohnnyjohnson!

 Oct 19 This story by @echuckles has been a real honor to work on with 
you, @LizShawen Having someone that knows their stuff and how to let others express themselves in an appropriate manner 
is a true gift.  You've got that!! Thank you!

Over 300 studies 50+ human show that fluoride causes neurological damage.  Even the EPA admits it is so.  However, the NBC writer decided that one poorly done study (National Toxicology Program - NTP) was enough to "prove" fluoridation is safe. She oddly used the same lame argument the fluoridationists use

Nonetheless, the NTP study has already been debunked in  Medical Hypotheses  (December 2018) The authors identify ten major flaws in the NTP experiment, for example, they used fluoride-resistant rats.


Further, Brenda Staudenmaier further debunks the article in her video rebuttal here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DE5ekdn96G4 (For example, the NBC writer erroneously said fluoride toxicity studies  are not published in peer-reviewed journals - but they are)

The writer, as all fluoridationists do, invokes the CDC which claims the  4 scientific fluoridation reviews prove safety Two aren't safety studies and the following two prove the opposite



This report lists many gaps in knowledge, e.g., fluoride's relationship to bone fractures, bone cancer, reproductive effects and genotoxicity.


This is what the York Review actually reported  in 2003. “We were unable to discover any reliable good-quality evidence in the fluoridation literature world-wide. What evidence we found suggested that water fluoridation was likely to have a beneficial effect, but that the range could be anywhere from a substantial benefit to a slight disbenefit to children's teeth…we felt that not enough was known because the quality of the evidence was poor. The evidence about reducing inequalities in dental health was of poor quality, contradictory and unreliable.”

It’s important to note that in 2015 the independent and respected UK-based Cochrane group of researchers confirmed the York review. After reviewing all available fluoridation studies, they could not find any quality evidence to prove fluoridation changes the “existing differences in tooth decay across socioeconomic groups.” And they neither could find valid evidence that fluoride reduces adults’ cavity rates nor that fluoridation cessation increases tooth decay. Cochrane reported that fluoridation may reduce cavities in children (2 primary teeth or 1 permanent tooth). But Cochrane cautions these studies have “high risk of bias” and were mostly done before preventive measures were widespread, e.g. fluoridated toothpaste and sealants. Here’s how Newsweek reported on Cochrane: “Fluoridation May Not Prevent Cavities, Scientific Review Shows.”


Further, in 2008, a CDC official lied to the Fairbanks, AK, City Council about reviews he claimed proved fluoridation safety but they actually didn’t.

And an FOIA request uncovered the fears that CDC oral health dentists are privately concerned about fluoride’s kidney effects; but they won’t say so publicly


In fact, the National Kidney Foundation dropped its fluoridation endorsement as many other organizations have done quietly over the years.

The NBC writer links to a 1999 CDC report which gave rise to an oft-repeated politically-motivated meme but she fails to link to a 2002 CDC report which says, in effect, that fluoride hardens teeth topically but the amount that's absorbed into teeth doesn't reduce tooth decay and 
"The prevalence of dental caries in a population is not inversely related to the concentration of fluoride in enamel, and a higher concentration of enamel fluoride is not necessarily more efficacious in preventing dental caries.”

Elizabeth Chuck and her fluoridation informants took a undeserved and unverified pot shot at the New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation, Inc. (NYSCOF) 

She wrote, “They spread the word on Facebook groups, like that of the New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation, which blames fluoride for problems including thyroid damage and was slammed in 2012 for falsely claiming that the federal government “recommends avoiding fluoridated water when making infant formula.” 

The truth is that NYSCOF doesn’t accuse fluoride of causing thyroid damage – science does. NYSCOF justs reports upon the science that shows the connection.

For example, according to the first-ever published review of the fluoride/thyroid literature, (2006 National Research Council Fluoride(NRC) report), there is clear evidence that small amounts of fluoride, at or near levels added to US water supplies present potential risks to the thyroid gland

Many Americans are exposed to fluoride in the ranges associated with thyroid effects, especially for people with iodine deficiency," says a co-author of the government-sponsored report. "The recent decline in iodine intake in the U.S could contribute to increased toxicity of fluoride for some individuals," she said.

Robert Carton, PhD, an environmental scientist who worked for over 30 years for the U.S. government including managing risk assessments on high priority toxic chemicals, says "fluoride has detrimental effects on the thyroid gland of healthy males at 3.5 mg a day. With iodine deficiency, the effect level drops to 0.7 milligrams/day for an average male.”


This is confirmed by a recent University of Toronto  study which reports that  “Adults living in Canada who have moderate-to-severe iodine deficiencies and higher levels of urinary fluoride may be at an increased risk for underactive thyroid gland activity.”

Also, a February 2018 study published in Nature Scientific Reports  found that fluoride has impacts on thyroid hormones even in the standard concentration of less than 0.5 mg/L. “Application of standard household water purification devices was recommended for hypothyroidism,” the researchers advise.

More information on how fluoride affects the thyroid gland http://fluoridealert.org/issues/health/thyroid/

The NRC was first to raise a red flag about mixing infant formula with fluoridated water in its 2006 report.  The American Dental Association sent an e-gram to all its members and supporters in 2006 with the advising them to inform their patients to  avoid mixing fluoridated water into infant formula to prevent dental fluorosis.  

The message has been softened over the years but not the science.  The Journal of the American Dental Association published the fluoride content of all infant formulas and found that infants exceed their adequate intake (0.01 mg per day) from the formula alone – whether concentrated, organic or ready to feed.  See: https://safbaby.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/infant-formula-fluoride-jadaoct09.pdf

Also, soy based formulas are higher in fluoride than milk based formulas. See:http://www.aapd.org/assets/1/25/McKnight-Hanes-10-03.pdf 


Fluoridationists pointed the NBC writer to a slanderous  “Science in Medicine” report which is an egregious assault on credible science by two unqualified individuals. Of course, she dutifully linked to it

It denigrated me personally and others opposed to fluoridation.  I reported the two authors to their respective state dental boards in 2013  

NBC's main fluoridation source, Dr. Johnny Johnson, also used ad hominen attacks against me in an email message to Potsdam, NY, city council members.  It’s here: https://fluoridedangers.blogspot.com/p/johnny-johnsons-ad-hominem-attack-on-me_35.html

We are not the only ones to question fluoridation safety.  Here are samples:

Legal Scholar Rita Barnett-Rose; Historian Catherine Carstairs, Phd; Social Scientist Brian Martin PhD; investigative reporters in Scientific American, Chemical & Engineering News, Newsweek and ABC-TV.  In fact, US public health bureaucrats ignore their own published evidence of fluoride’s potential harm i.e. New York State Department of Health and Virginia Department of Health.

One has to wonder, if fluoridation is based on such solid science, why is it necessary to attack people.  Using endorsements instead of science is another way of circumventing the truth. And why did NBC editors allow this poorly-researched article to be published and where were the fact-checkers?
                                                END