Although, he's a bit of an alarmist, here's what Dr. Mercola has to say:
"The conventional wisdom has been that topical application of fluoride can help strengthen your enamel and help prevent decay. If that's untrue, then the case against water fluoridation—the ingestion of fluoride—becomes even stronger than it ever was before.
There's just no doubt that ingesting fluoride has no beneficial effect on your teeth. In fact, there's overwhelming evidence indicating that fluoride is a potent toxin that can cause a wide array of severe health problems once ingested.
When evaluating the issue of water fluoridation it is also important to understand that fluoride is a drug. You can't get fluoride without a prescription. Yet it's being added to your water supply on a mandatory basis at various levels that may or may not be safe for various individuals, especially children, the sick, and the elderly. Water fluoridation is a major assault on your freedom of choice – to be drugged or not.
Sodium fluoride, which is a far simpler toxin than the fluoride compounds used for most water fluoridation, has also been used for rat and cockroach poisons, so there is no question that it is highly toxic.
Amazingly, the United States is only one of eight countries in the entire developed world that fluoridates more than 50 percent of its water supply. (The other seven are: Australia, Colombia, Ireland, Israel, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore.) In Europe, Ireland is the only country that fluoridates more than 50 percent of its drinking water, and England fluoridates 10 percent. Most of mainland Europe is not fluoridated, and yet, according to World Health Organization data, their teeth are just as good, if not better than Americans'."
Read the full article here: Does Fluoride Really Fight Cavities
All this talk about chemicals in our water made me curious about mine. After a little digging, I found this great database through Environmental Working Group that gives water reports for many cities in the U.S. and helps you find water filters to eliminate specific chemicals. EWG Tap Water Report
You can also check out the widget on my sidebar and enter your zip code to get your EWG water report. Of course, this report doesn't have fluoride listed for some reason. I did find that Baltimore City's fluoride average is .9 ppm (parts per million), which is just above the new Health and Human Services proposed maximum limit of .7 ppm. Here's a link to Baltimore City's most recent water report: Baltimore City Water Report
Unfortunately, most water filters, except for reverse osmosis systems, don't remove fluoride, so we're basically stuck with it until the levels are reduced or eliminated by the government.
In a nutshell:
- It is recommended that you filter your water to help reduce chemical contaminants. Don't forget to cook and make coffee with this water too. It appears that carbon block filters are more effective than the granulated activated carbon. Ideally, a reverse osmosis filter is the best, but they are expensive and a major pain to change (I've learned this from personal experience). This one seems pretty good after looking at Baltimore's contaminants: Clear 2O Water Pitcher
- If you're on-the-go, carry a safe, re-usable water bottle. Hard plastic bottles (#7 plastic) can leach a harmful plastics chemical called bisphenol A (BPA) into water. Carry stainless steel or other BPA-free bottles. Don’t reuse bottled water bottles. The plastic can harbor bacteria and break down to release plastics chemicals.