Just when we thought we had seen and heard the full run of attacks on the addition of fluoride to public water systems, we came across the results of a study that claims children exposed to fluoride wind up less intelligent than children not exposed to fluoride.

Yes, you read that correctly. Fluoride causes stupidity… at least according to the results of the study discussed recently in a publication called ‘Environmental Health Perspectives’.

Fluoride is added to 70% of the U.S. water supply. Kids who drink this water suffer from decreased cognitive function, according to research published in Environmental Health Perspectives, a publication of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. The study followed 512 children between the ages 8 and 13, with varying degrees of fluoride exposure. One group lived in a Chinese village with high fluoride levels, and the other in a Chinese village with low fluoride levels. The scientists conducting the study even eliminated other variables that may have affected brain health, such as iodine deficiency and lead exposure. With these variables eliminated, researchers found that the number of intelligent children in the village with low fluoride levels was 350 percent higher than those in the high fluoride village. Even more disturbing, 15% of the highly fluoridated children scored low enough to indicate mental retardation, verses 6% in the other village.

According to Paul Connett, Ph.D., director of the Fluoride Action Network, “This is the 24th study that has found this association, but this study is stronger than the rest because the authors have controlled for key confounding variables and in addition to correlating lowered IQ with levels of fluoride in the water, the authors found a correlation between lowered IQ and fluoride levels in children’s blood. This brings us closer to a cause and effect relationship between fluoride exposure and brain damage in children.” ( source )

How can you determine if your tap water contains fluoride? Call your local water company and ask them for the current or previous year’s Water Quality Report. By law, they must either provide you with a copy of that document or give you the online location where you can download it.

Testing for fluoride in drinking water?

Unfortunately no dip-n-read test kits or basic ‘wet chemistry’ test kits exist for fluoride. We know of only one test kit available to the general public at this time that has the ability to test for fluoride in drinking water and does not require users to have a degree in chemistry to preform the testing.

The eXact Micro 7+ Meter can test for fluoride levels between 0.1 and 1.1 mg/L (ppm) using time tested SPADNS chemistry. Do you need to know what that last bit means to use the kit? Nope. Yo will need to pick up the required fluoride reagentstrips separately for an additional $13, though, because they do not come with the basic meter kit.