Filthy Fluoride

Water-supply1

I’m sorry, I just feel like I’ve been taken for an absolute fool these past few years- probably because I have been a fool.

I never used to stop to ask what was added to my water, if my shampoo was doing anything else to my scalp rather then just cleaning it, if my tampons were safe, if the pesticides being sprayed on my veggies had any dodgie side effects, if antibiotics given to cows could end up in the milk I drink. Now I do, and my brain just won’t stop asking questions and looking for replacements.

Once you start scratching the surface and actually look at the items you’re using on a daily basis all hell breaks loose. You start seeing that at some point in the last 50 years someone decided our health and well being is big business and every tactic, marketing ploy, corner cutting, money saving scheme is fair game. Nothing is what is seems.

… OK, rant over (sigh of relief from anyone still reading!) I just needed to get that off my chest!

Anyway, before the red mist came down I was about to talk some more about water. As mentioned previously I’m trying to steer clear of plastic water bottles due to the unwelcome side effect of BPA’s (more on that here). I’ve bought myself a lovely BPA free water bottle and everything was going fine until I heard about fluoride (this is where the angry ‘red mist’ came from).

Basically since 1964 the Irish Government took it on themselves to save our little Irish teeth by pumping a chemical called fluoride into our tap water. I don’t doubt that they did this in good faith at the time. However since then the case against this practice has mounted with studies suggesting links between excess fluoride and the following:

  • Some cancers
  • Osteoporosis
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Down syndrome
  • Chronic fatigue, thyroid dysfunction, headaches, depression, eczema and many more.

Due to all the evidence today almost all developed countries have outlawed the practice of adding Fluoride to their drinking water and now Ireland is one of only 8 developed countries, WORLD WIDE, to be still adding Fluoride to tap water!! Crazy right?!

If you’re interested in helping the fight against fluoridation here’s some levels of activity:

Level 1 (Zero effort required) – Like Irish group ‘The Girl Against Fluoride’ (TGAF) on Facebook to increase your awareness

Level 2 (Little bit of effort required) – Sign some petitions to stop fluoridation in Ireland- here and here

Level 3 (Fairly high effort needed) – I’ve no doubt fluoridation is going to be a hot topic as 2014 rolls in and we’re expected to start paying for this toxic water. So start talking to friends and family now about the harmful effects it’s having on our water supply and maybe, just maybe, if enough of us are complaining someone up there might listen.

TGAF

In the mean time, what can we do to help ourselves, and reduce the levels of fluoride we are exposed to?

I was in touch with TGAF for their suggestions on how to combat this chemical and here’s a summary of what one of the team, Shane, told me…

The best way of completely removing fluoride from the water is to use Reverse Osmosis (RO) filters on our taps. This can be either bought or rented, depending on your fundage situation:

Buying: Renewell Water Ltd

  • This is a small one man operation who TGAF have now teamed up. He offers the RO system at a discounted prices of €399 (and will also make a €50 donation to the campaign for each filter that is sold).

Renting: The Water Treatment Centre

  • They offer the RO system as a rental for an installation cost of €50 and a weekly rental of €3.99 (which turns out to be just over €250 for the year).

EL cheapo option: Good old Lidl and Aldi!

  • A 3rd option in these ‘tough economic times’ is to scrap RO and our worries about BPA plastic and just go for Glen Carrick bottled water from Lidl, or Comeragh Spring Water from Aldi. TGAF  tells me this bottled water is both low in fluoride and high in calcium- the calcium acts as a buffer for the fluoride ion thus enabling the body to excrete this naturally occurring fluoride (5litre bottle costs €1.20)

I’m planning on investing in a rented fluoride filter and I’ll let you know how we get on!

Plastic- you ain’t so fantastic

plastic-water-bottles

Ever notice how when giving recommendations to prevent sickness or remedy any ailment all beauty/ health columns include a recommendation to drink water?

Oh you have acne? Drink more water

A kidney infection? Drink more water

You want to lose weight? Drink more water

Migraine? Drink more water

Wrinkles? Drink more water

So naturally drinking more water was one of the first changes I made and now I feel headachy and grouchy if I don’t drink at least 2 liters every day. I used to buy a 2 liter bottle of Ballygowan water at the start of the week and then keep refilling it up from my kitchen tap filled, Brita jug each morning – I did this to save on the cost of buying bottled water every day and also to reduce the environmental effect which throwing out a 2 liter bottle would have.

It’s only through some late night Google-ing I learnt the following scaryness about this practice:

  1. Plastic containers have codes on their base and each one refers to the type of chemicals the container has been made from.  Take the Ballygowan bottle Code ‘1 PET’, unfortunately for me it turns out PET degrades with use and can contain trace amount of Bisphenol A (BPA) which is amplified if exposed to high heat- such as being left in a car (which I’m always doing) or re-used. If you want to know more about the codes and what they mean and which ones to steer clear of I suggest a look at this
  2. BPA is a synthetic chemical that has been used to make certain plastics since the 1960s, including plastics found in food and drink containers. BPA can leach into our food and drinks. In fact studies indicate that most of us already have BPA in our bodies and one study showed that 90% of Europeans have traces of BPA in our systems.  More on BPA can be found here.
  3. A growing number of health experts, consumers groups and national governments (Canada recently declared BPA was a toxic chemical) are becoming concerned about the health effects that can be caused from high-dose or long-term exposure to BPA, including;
  • Heart Disease
  • Intestinal Damage
  • Infertility and Reproductive Issues
  • Erectile Dysfunction
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Behavioural Changes in Children
  • Premature puberty in children
  • Neurological problems in infants
  • Permanent damage to foetuses in pregnant women
  • Miscarriage
  • An increasing number of occurrences of breast and prostate cancer

Of course there’s also evidence to suggest that there isn’t any problem with BPA’s (read what the Irish Food and Drink Industry say in support of BPA here). However I’m going to go with my gut here and steer clear.  My take on these things is we’ve no come back if these researchers and scientists turn around in 5/10 years time and go:

‘oh yea, actuallllllly, it turns out we were wrong and BPA- it’s mad dangerous and harmful. Oopsies! Sorry about that everyone!’.

So i is going to be safe, not sorry.

That’s why I’m currently looking high and low for a 2 liter BPA free water bottle which doesn’t cost the earth. The closest I’ve come is this 1 liter bottle.

If you come across a 2 liter BPA bottle that delivers to Ireland and doesn’t cost a bomb please please let me know!

GM Noooo!

GM)1

I interrupt this normally happy Wellness Cloud for some disturbing news…

I may be a little late getting to the GM-hating party but I’m here now and I’m eyes-popping-out-of-my-head shocked by what I’ve been hearing/ reading.

What’s all this fuss about?

Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s) where launched in the late 1990’s and are experimental crops and animal feed that have been genetically engineered in a lab to “improve” the product, i.e. make it grow faster or bigger, produce its own pesticides or become more resistant to drought- basically make it more profitable.

Many genetically engineered foods contain the Bt toxin and according to Jeffery Smith (a world authority on the dangers of GMO’s) although this may help line the agriculture industries pockets, it’s not been so nice to the consumer. People who have removed GMO’s and this Bt toxin from their diet have described improvements from a variety of diseases and disorders including:

  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Allergic reactions
  • Immune system problems
  • Fertility issues
  • Organ damage
  • Mental issues: including autism, anxiety and even depression

Consumption of GM food have also been linked to birth defects, infant mortality and certain cancers.

But we’re protected against GMO’s in Ireland right?!

We’re lucky to be living in Ireland and still be part of the EU I’ll grant you that. The EU have the most stringent regulations in place against GMO crops and modified medicinal products.

Side note: 90% of GM crops are grown in the US, Canada and Argentina and a whopping 80% of all processed foods in the US contain GMO’s.

However there is good and bad news.

The Good News 🙂

Growing GM Crops:  The EU have only authorised 1 GM variety (Monsanto’s MON810) and only 0.05% of EU land is cultivated with it and therefore Ireland is a GMO crop free country.

Labelling Imported GM Foods:  All processed food or animal feed made with GMO crops that contains 0.9% or more GMOs must be labelled as such to alert the consumer. This is unlike the US, where no food containing GMO’s currently needs to be labelled.

The Bad News 😦

Animal FeedI’m sorry to say that most Irish beef, lamb, pork, and dairy produce is made from livestock fed on GM food, and, as we all know, if they eat it, your eating it. The really upsetting part of this is that according to the 2003 EC regulation, products such as meat, milk or eggs obtained from animals fed with GM feed or treated with GM medical products do not require labelling. So if your eating meat or eggs or drinking a glass of milk right now there’s a high likelihood that the animal it came from was pumped up on GM feed and medicine.

GMO

I bet your thinking:

‘Ahh no, sure we have the FSAI (Food Safety Authority of Ireland) monitoring this stuff! They wouldn’t allow GM animal feed if it wasn’t safe!’

Not the case my good people. These committees have been infiltrated and compromised by the GM biotech industry (I realise that line sounds like something from a Matt Damon movie but even a small bit of detective work shows this is in fact correct!). Dr. John O’Brien is the CEO of the FSAI and is a former director of a GM company! I’m not making this stuff up people- go and have a Google!

So what can I do?

  1. Read the ingredients! This is key. As I mentioned, any processed food made with 0.09% GM foods needs to be labelled with: ‘This product contains genetically modified organisms’
  2. Either revaluate how much meat and dairy you consume/ feed to your kiddies, perhaps introduce Meatless Mondays? Or else buy organic meat and eggs.
  3. Support restaurants, pubs and shops which promote an GMO Free ethos. A list of them can be found here
  4. Get involved with the activities of GM-Free Ireland
  5. Get educated: Read ‘The Seeds of Deception’/ watch ‘Genetic Roulette’

Top Wellness Cloud Posts

The Wellness Cloud Views

  • 11,424 views

Please click to follow The Wellness Cloud and receive notifications of new posts by email

Join 71 other followers