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Fluoride Is Neurotoxic At Low Levels Says Top US Government Science Program’s Review

“Fluoride is presumed to be a cognitive neurodevelopmental hazard to humans” according to the second draft report of the US National Toxicology Programme (NTP), that has just been released.

The National Toxicology Program (NTP) is an inter-agency program run by the United States Department of Health and Human Services to coordinate, evaluate, and report on toxicology within public agencies. This is the highest scientific body in the world with regards to toxicology. 

The NTP review team identified “159 published human studies, 339 published experimental animal studies, and 60 in vitro/mechanistic studies.

Of 29 studies classified by the NTP as high quality, 13 found neurotoxic effects at fluoride levels less than 0.7 ppm and another 5 studies at less than 1.5 ppm

“To continue fluoridation with this knowledge is despicable”, says Mary Byrne of Fluoride Free New Zealand. “Children will be having their IQ lowered and perhaps other neurological harm applied to them. The Ministry of Health needs to stop burying its head in the sand the way it did over lead in petrol. Local councillors need to stand up for their community and call a halt to this practice immediately. The science doesn’t get any more mainstream than this.”

New Zealand councils typically fluoridate at around 0.85 ppm – higher than anywhere else in the world and higher than the studies at 0.7ppm. That is, we add more toxic fluoride to our water than the other handful of fluoridating countries.

Babies’ IQs were typically lowered by between 4 and 7 IQ points. The Dunedin longitudinal study showed that a 4.25 IQ point loss results in measurable negative life outcomes in terms of employment level, income, and social mobility. US research shows that even a 1 IQ point loss results in $20,000 less income over a lifetime. There is also the additional educational cost to taxpayers of supporting children with lowered IQ.

NTP’s finding was based on:
“… a consistent and robust pattern of findings in human studies … demonstrating that higher fluoride exposure is associated with lower IQ and other cognitive effects in children”
The four recent highest quality studies funded by the National Institutes of Health found significant effects when pregnant women or bottle-fed infants were exposed to fluoride at or below 0.7 ppm (or equivalent) see Bashash 2017, 2018; Green 2019; Till 2020.

Meanwhile, even the NTP’s recognition of harm at 1.5 ppm or above incorporates no margin of safety to protect pregnant women and children drinking fluoridated, thus refuting claims by proponents that fluoridation is “absolutely safe and effective.”

A minimum standard safety factor of 10 is used by the EPA to extrapolate from a human study finding harm to find a dose that is protective of everyone in a large population. This margin would give a maximum safe level of fluoride in water of 0.15 ppm, thus making any fluoridation program untenable.

For more information see an Op-ed published by Bruce Lanphear (MD, MPH, a physician, clinical scientist, and professor at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada, Christine Till (associate professor of Psychology at York University in Toronto ) and Linda Birnbaum (former director of the US National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS). Bruce Lanphear is also an award winning researcher who has been a member of two National Academies of Science Committees, is a member of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Lead Review Panel, and is renowned for his research on low-level lead exposure and many other environmental neurotoxins. 


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