I have been against adding fluoride to the water supply for many years and have written about the subject a number of times.
Almost from the day that I started writing, questions and comments about fluoride poured in. In 2009, when I started writing, I didn’t know anything about fluoride other than it was in tooth paste and it was controversial.
A little history
I can list hundreds of “points of fact”, but I think that three quick stories provide enough evidence to justify my decision to
I read about the study that followed 5,000 children in Ontario and another 5,000 children in Quebec from the time they were you children until they were 18 years old to see how many cavities they got over their young life. Fluoride was added to the water in Ontario but not to the water in Quebec. The results of the study showed that the kids in Quebec averaged only one half more cavity that the kids in Ontario. When you think about it, being forced to drink poison for your entire life to save one half cavity seems like a high price to pay.
Then we have the statement by the gentleman that was instrumental in the policy of municipalities adding fluoride to water who later recanted and said it was the worst decision he had ever made in his life.
Then we have the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) who set the maximum limit of fluoride level in municipal water supplies at 1.2 ppm (parts per million). A number of years ago, the EPA suggested (but didn’t mandate) that the maximum level of fluoride should be reduced to 0.7 ppm and most municipalities complied. Why would the EPA mandate maximum amounts of fluoride and then later reduce the amount by almost half if fluoride in the water was OK?
Finally, a personal story. When I moved to a new city four years ago, one of my first calls was to the manager of the water treatment plant (yup, I’m a water nerd). Here is the gist of our conversation:
Me: Does our city add fluoride to the water supply.
Him: No, thank goodness
Me: I guess your not an advocate of water fluoridation
Him: That’s not it. The people that you work with become your friends over time. I don’t want to see my friends die because they have to handle fluoride.
If you need more evidence that adding fluoride to the water supply doesn’t make any sense, I invite you to search the internet as there are thousands of articles available to read. Here is a screen cap that gives you an idea of what is out there:
A new fluoride filter that actually works
If you search for fluoride filters on the internet, you will find an endless supply. The problem is that they don’t work. I have written about this subject before so I will skip the details. The bottom line is that activated alumina filters that are sold with the claim that they remove fluoride (which they can under ideal laboratory conditions) only remove about 30% of the fluoride from municipal source water when they are new and their ability to remove fluoride drops off quickly from there.
Until recently, the only way to remove fluoride effectively was through distillation (100% removal but expensive and cumbersome) or with a reverse osmosis system (92% to 95% removal but the systems also remove calcium and magnesium from the water which your body needs unless you take supplements to replace the magnesium in particular).
When H2FX (see www.h2fx.com) announced recently that their new Hyrogen Infusion Machines (HIM’s) would remove up to 85% of the fluoride from municipal source water, I was both intrigued and skeptical. Was this just another “false claim” that you see so often on the internet, or did the company have something different that actually worked? How could one company have what nobody else had? What was so different about their filter?
Checking out the fluoride removal claim
I asked the guys at H2FX if they would provide me with independent laboratory results. The company sent me the results from testing done by the manufacturer. I suggested that they put the results online which they have done.
The results were impressive:
The following is a list of reductions claimed by the manufacturer for the the filter used in the H2FX machine.
>99% Chloramines (based on 3pmm challenge-NSF/ANSI Std 42)
>99% Lead (based on NSF/ANSI Std 53)
>85% Fluoride reduction (Independent Laboratory tests)
Additional reductions of the following contaminants:Aluminiu,Arsenic (III,V),Cadmium,Chlorine,Chromium (III, VI),Copper,Cysts, Glyphosate,Mercury, Nickel, Radionuclides, Silver, Trihalomethanes, Zinc
Obtaining NSF certification is not a small thing. It is expensive to get and expensive to maintain the annual fees. Many companies object to the high fees and typically only get the certification for one product out of an entire product line. Instead of paying NSF over and over again, they tell their customers that every product in the product line uses the same materials but the company refuses to NSF millions of dollars. The one thing that NSF certification tells you is that the product actually does what it says it does.
As I read through the list, I noticed that the company didn’t have NSF for fluoride. Hmmmm. Call me a skeptic, but the NSF exclusion for fluoride really jumped out at me. Was the claim real, or not? Be curious, I called the manufacturer of the filter.
The fluoride conspiracy?
My wife is a conspiracy theory nut, but I don’t have the time. Her research and theories are the source of many arguments in our home. Actually, it is not her research, but rather my lack of patience for her findings. Don’t get me wrong, I do find some of her theories intriguing, but some of them are so “out there” that I have trouble wrapping my head around them. For the most part, my reaction is that even if the theories might have some validity, if I can’t do anything about it, I’m not interested. On those nights, our bed seems to be a mile wide.
OK, back to the here and now.
When I called up the manufacturer of the fluoride filter, I tried not to let my skepticism show through which means I was polite.
The company explained that it took them 11 years to develop the filter and that none of the big filter companies have been able to reproduce the product despite concerted efforts. Impressive, but not necessarily worth anything.
I asked why the company didn’t get NSF testing for their filter if it was so good.
I was told that NSF doesn’t test for fluoride removal despite the fact that it is easy to do.
I told them that it didn’t make sense for the NSF to avoid testing for such an important poison.
That is where it got interesting.
Although the company wouldn’t come out and say the words exactly, they did provide me indirectly with the information that I was seeking. I was a financial analyst in the early part of my life and in order to get information from company Presidents and CFO’s, you have to be able to ask the right questions so that the person answering the questions can answer without providing Insider Information.
It turns out that the big aluminum manufacturers (no names here but it is not hard to guess) are significant backers of the NSF. No wonder the NSF won’t test for fluoride.
To finish the story, I learned that the filter manufacturer had the testing done by a WQA certified lab (WQA stands for Water Quality Association, who do the testing for NSF for water products). The tests were done exactly to WQA/NSF standards, but they used water from the Chicago municipal. Chicago municipal water was used, instead of distilled water that gets “dosed up” which is required for official NSF testing, in order for the lab to avoid being sanctioned by the NSF. The lab wouldn’t do the testing using the NSF mandated procedure as they wouldn’t risk losing their certification status.
Geez, I have my own personal conspiracy story. My wife will be happy.
Update: After this article was published, I was contacted by Vitev (www.vitev.refr.cc) who informed me that their Flo Plus two canister drinking water filter system uses the same technology. Once the public becomes aware of the fluoride removing capability of the new filter, I imagine that it will be available everywhere.