Toxic Waste....On Tap.

Greetings of the Season, everyone! I had grand visions in the weeks leading up to Christmas, of sharing recipes and tips for healthy finger food and desserts, but exams and essays got in the way.

But here's a next Christmas there will be a plethora of recipes and tips that you can use to create a healthy - but yummy - celebration meal.

In 2011, I plan to get more involved in several activist causes. One of those causes is fluoride in our drinking water.

A couple of months ago, I sent an email to members of my local parliament, raising concerns about the use of fluoride in our water supplies.

I got several fob-you-off letters (you know the kind? Polite but unmoved.). One minister helpfully informed me that our local government now uses fluorosilicic acid, because it is "safer for those handling it".


No mention of safety for the people drinking it...No mention either, that fluorosilicic acid is a waste product from the fertiliser industry, and if that industry were to dispose of it properly, it would cost them millions of dollars.

I wonder if she has ever read the Material Safety Data Sheet, which clearly states that it is a Schedule 7 poison.

(Schedule 7 poisons are "substances with a high potential for causing harm at low exposure and which require special precautions during manufacture, handling, storage or use".)

The Health Minister informed me it was their stance, that water fluoridation is the most "socially equitable" and efficient means of preventing dental caries across the community.

(Strangely, no-one made any mention of tackling one of the causes of the dental caries problem - high amounts of sugar in the diet. Guess that belongs in the too-hard basket.)

Personally, I fail to see anything socially equitable about forcing people to buy bottled water or expensive filters, in order to avoid a toxic waste in the tap water.

The other issue I have with fluoride is infant exposure due to powdered formula-feeding. Here are a few comments on the issue:

"If using a product that needs to be reconstituted, parents and caregivers should consider using water that has no or low levels of fluoride." (American Dental Association, 2006.)

"In Boston, for example, more than 60% of exclusively formula-fed babies exceed the safe dose of fluoride on any given day." (Environmental Working Group, 2006.)

"infant formulas should still be prepared using non-fluoridated water". (Clarkson JJ and McLoughlin J, International Dental Journal, 2000.)

Here's the thing. Of all the infant formulas I've looked at, none of them listed any instructions regarding fluoride on the label. It simply says to use cooled boiled water.

But boiling water does not remove fluoride...

Meanwhile, my busy Health Minister has been throwing fundraising barbeques for cancer and opening new hospital wards.

Which is rather ironic, since fluoride has been linked to cancer AND genetic damage, SIDS, Depression, Down's Syndrome, Thyroid Disease, Alzheimer's Disease, name just a few!!

So, my "representatives" can expect to hear more from me in 2011.


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