[The following is an excerpt from the final chapter of my forthcoming guide to fluoroderma. What do you think? Is it interesting? Too long? Are the references convincing? Thanks for any input you can offer!]
I was puzzled by my body’s reaction to the iodine supplement. I contemplated switching to the type of iodine recommended by Dr. Abraham but the large doses were concerning.
That is when Charles Hakala, the research specialists at Hakala Labs and co-author with Dr. Abraham of multiple papers for The Iodine Project, mentioned a small piece of information that altered my approach to fluoride detox. He told me boron might be even more effective than iodine at displacing fluoride from the body.
Boron does not receive much attention in the nutrition world. This was the first I had heard of it in relation to fluoride.
Hakala was planning to gather a small test group to research the theory further. The method would be similar to the urinary iodine loading test except subjects would be given a boron supplement in place of the iodine tablet. Given my strong belief in the healing properties of nutrient-dense foods —and because I did not want to wait decades for the medical community to reach an agreement —I decided to conduct a research experiment of my own.
My first step was to research the boron/fluoride connection on the Internet. The evidence was sparse. A study conducted in 1942 on insects and rats concluded that boron will bind with fluoride and “has some value as an antidote” to fluorine.[i]
Eventually, I came across a study performed by medical researchers in China who used borax to treat 31 human patients with skeletal fluorosis. By observing symptoms and monitoring urinary excretion of fluoride, the researchers concluded that boron effectively counteracts symptoms of fluoride toxicity in humans.[iv]
The research was scant, but it was enough to keep me intrigued by the theory.
A few alternative healthcare sources, such as the popular Earth Clinic site, recommend borax as a folk remedy for displacing fluoride from the body. Borax is a compound form of boron with oxygen and sodium attached. It is commonly found next to baking soda in the laundry aisle (under the brand name “20 Mule”).
To detox fluoride, Earth Clinic recommends drinking a liter of water with a pinch of added borax a few times a week. Forum participants reported strong detox reactions and the clearing of fluoride-related symptoms. I was skeptical of the borax remedy. I did not know if it was safe to consume a substance I currently used to clean my toilet. Instead of resorting to borax, I decided to see what would happen if I increased the amount of boron in my diet.
The list of common foods that are rich in boron includes grapes, raisins, pears, nuts, peas, and beans. Most sources claim meat and fish are poor sources of boron.
Having studied the subject of “traditional diets” for The Cellulite Investigation, I knew most non-industrialized societies relied on slow-simmered bone broths as their primary source of minerals. Back when chicken soup was known as a healing food, it was made by simmering chicken bones and other leftover parts for several hours in a large stock pot.
Homemade bone broth is said to contain all the trace minerals needed to maintain healthy bones. Does that mean it contains boron?
I could not find any nutritional data on the boron content of homemade bone broth. Studies on poultry show that dietary boron significantly increases bone health by improving bone development.[vii].[viii],[ix]
[to be continued… ]
[i] Marcovitch, S., and Stanley, W.W., A Study of Antidotes for Fluorine. The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. 1942; 74(2): 235-8 (abstract available at http://jpet.aspetjournals.org/content/74/2/235.abstract as of April 2011).
[ii] Elsair, J. et al., Boron as antidote to fluoride: effect on bones and claws in subacute intoxication of rabbits. Fluoride 1981; 14(1): 21-9 (abstract available at http://www.fluoridealert.org/pesticides/1981.f.abstracts.htm as of April 2011).
[iii] Elsair, J. et al., Boron as an antidote in acute fluoride intoxication in rabbits: its action on the fluoride and calcium-phosphorous metabolism. Fluoride 1980; 13(1): 30-8 (abstract available at http://www.fluoridealert.org/pesticides/1980.f.abstracts.htm as of April 2011).
[iv] Zhou, L.Y. et al., Effect of borax in treatment of skeletal fluorosis. Fluoride 1987; 20(1): 24-27 (abstract available at http://www.fluoridealert.org/pesticides/1987.part.2.f.abstracts.htm as of April 2011).
[v] Nielsen, F.H. et al., Effect of dietary boron on mineral, estrogen, and testosterone metabolism in postmenopausal woman. The Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology 1987; 1(5): 394-7 (available at http://www.fasebj.org/content/1/5/394.abstract as of April 2011).
[vi] Newnham, R.E., Essentiality of boron for health bones and joints. Environmental Health Perspectives 1994; 102(7): 83-5 (available at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1566627/ as of April 2011).
[vii] Wilson, J.H., and Ruszler, P.L., Effects of boron on growing pullets. Biological Trace Elements Research 1997; 56(3): 287-94 (abstract available at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9197925?dopt=Abstract as of April 2011).
[viii] Hunt, C.D. et al., Dietary boron modifies the effects of vitamin D3 nutriture on indices of energy substrate utilization and mineral metabolism in the chick. Journal of Bone Mineral Research 1994;9:171-81 (abstract available at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8140930?dopt=Abstract as of April 2011).
[ix] Rossi AF, Miles RD, Damron BL, Flunker LK. Effects of dietary boron supplementation on broilers. Poultry Sci 1993;72:2124-30 (abstract available at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8265501?dopt=Abstract as of April 2011).
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