New research from the Centre for Health Services Studies at the University of Kent is leading to calls for more investigation of the impact of fluoride in the water supply as it relates to the prevalence of hypothyroidism, a condition which is a major health concern in many areas of the world, including England and the United States.
The study, published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, found that “higher levels of fluoride in drinking water provide a useful contribution for predicting prevalence of hypothyroidism,” adding that rates of hypothyroidism were significantly higher in areas where the water was fluoridated than in areas where it was not.
Other Health Concerns
Concerns about the fluoridation of water have already been raised by scientists and doctors, particularly regarding its potentially neurotoxic effects – a 2012 meta-analysis published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives discussed the known fact that fluoride causes neurotic in animals and examined evidence that it can cause neurodevelopmental delays in children – as well as its impact on coronary artery disease, and many states and countries have taken steps to end the fluoridation of water.
For example, in 2014 the state of Israel announced that it would no longer fluoridate its water supply joining the ranks of countries like Finland, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, and Sweden.
Roughly 67 percent of Americans receive fluoridated tap water, according to the CDC; benefits of fluoride include decreasing the likelihood of developing cavities, but many are concerned about the potential side effects, with critics saying that the fluoridation of water amounts to forced medication.
Mitigating The Effects
Fortunately, research is also being done on reversing the effects of the potential neurotoxic effects of fluoride; this 2014 study published in Pharmacognosy Magazine revealed that curcumin, a compound of the common spice turmeric, can be useful in ameliorating degenerative effects of fluoride in the brains of mice.