As new scientific evidence continues to reveal the dangers of mass fluoridation, an increasing percentage of American households are switching to bottled water or installing expensive water filtration systems. But the kitchen tap isn’t our only source of fluoride exposure. What about breakfast cereals, organic hot dogs, and even (gasp!) homemade chicken broth?!
Surprised? Really?? You didn’t expect that a chemical that’s been added to the public water supply for the past fifty plus years wouldn’t infiltrate the entire food chain, did you? Most of us –dental authorities included –are unaware of how much fluoride we are consuming on a daily basis or even where that fluoride comes from. So how do I know all this? I recently discovered a nifty little radar that picks up on foods that contain high amounts of fluoride. It’s called fluoroderma, and for years I thought it was plain old acne. But fluoroderma is a form of cystic acne caused by fluoride ingestion.
While suffering with bouts of adult acne over the past decade or so, it became obvious that my particular problem was geographically specific. Living in certain towns caused me to break out within hours. Yet the condition completely disappeared when living overseas, regardless of country or continent. After my latest move to South Florida, the condition was worse than ever. A consultation with a lymphatic expert at the Upledger Institute led me to the possibility that fluoride could be to blame. At first, this seemed like a simple theory to verify –just stop drinking fluoridated water and see if the problem goes away, right? But the fluoride hypothesis was much more difficult to test than I expected, due to the extent that this pervasive chemical has inundated the American food supply.
Just think of all the products that have a high fluoride content: soft drinks, juices, beer, bottled water… Foods such as cereal that are pressure cooked can contain even more fluoride; boiling fluoridated water merely concentrates the fluoride while the rest of the water evaporates. Many of the pesticides used in modern agribusiness are fluoride based, as well. Cryolite is one such pesticide, popular with California grape growers. A single glass of California wine can deliver as much fluoride as a liter of fluoridated water.
Yet fluoride has permeated the American food supply in even more insidious ways. As with humans, fluoride accumulates in the skin and bones of the animals who ingest it. I experienced my most extreme fluoride reactions following many a delicious dinner of roast chicken or soups made with homemade stock.
After several months of trial and error, my fluoroderma is finally under control. My fluoride radar is so well calibrated that I can pick up on a high fluoride food or drink within hours. Won-ton soup from the local Chinese take-out place? Heavily fluoridated. That European beer I ordered to cut my chances of a fluoride reaction? Who would have guessed that Newcastle is one of the few British cities that fluoridates its water supply? And while I’m still gathering the courage to test my luck with another roast chicken, I am optimistic I’ll someday find a local farmer whose pastured poultry is fluoroderma friendly.
Surely, my condition is an extreme case. But how many other people suffer from fluoroderma without realizing it, just as I did for all those years? Few dermatologists or health care professionals would think to diagnose it. Do you know someone with dental fluorosis who also suffers from cystic acne? Perhaps fluoroderma is more common than we think.
*This post is a part of Fight Back Fridays hosted by Food Renegade.
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