I’m a huge believer in the universe sending us signs. Recently, I’ve had many pondering about my health and I feel like the universe has sent me some signs to send me in the right direction. On a semi-related note, I started watching Grey’s Anatomy (which is AMAZING and I highly recommend to anyone who wants to go on an emotional roller coaster with the characters on the show to distract them from the emotional roller coaster of their life) and there was a patient in one episode of the show who felt immense pressure from her parents, but no matter how hard she tried, whatever she did wasn’t enough. Finally at one point in the episode Dr. Grey, while talking to the patient about how she is enough and shouldn’t be held to these ridiculous standards, says something along the lines of, “Life shouldn’t be that hard”. After hearing her say that line I burst into tears, dramatic, needed-half-of-a-tissue-box kind of tears. Hearing her say that triggered something in me and made me realize, you’re right, life shouldn’t be this hard. I have spent my whole almost-21 years struggling with digestive issues, chronic fatigue, depression, and weight issues. For someone who works out multiple times a week and eats a balanced diets, I shouldn’t be struggling this hard. There is something going on with my body and I am determined to find out what it is before it kills me. I shouldn’t need to be lying on my death bed before I get some fucking help.
So call me crazy, but I really do think of that episode Grey’s Anatomy was one of those signs. Another sign was when I’ve started listening to a podcast created by Dave Asprey, the creator of Bulletproof Coffee, who interviewed Elle Russ, a comedian and author of The Paleo Thyroid Solution. In this episode they talked about how current western medical doctors and endocrinologists tend to be extremely unhelpful when it comes to your thyroid health. Because of this, 60% of Americans with hypothyroidism go undiagnosed, most of those being women. Many of the symptoms and experiences Russ listed resonated with me. Once again, while listening to this podcast, I found myself crying, but this time on a public bus to the airport. One thing that really stayed in the back of my mind after listening to this podcast, and the whole time I visited my parents in California for Thanksgiving, was that they briefly mentioned Fluoride. It rang a bell in my mind because I’d remembered reading some posts writer by Lauren Geertsen on her blog Empowered Sustenance about the dangers of Fluoride. In the nutrition course I took while I still went to the University of Colorado Boulder (that I sadly did terribly in grade-wise because yay depression) was that we add Fluoride to our drinking water to help with dental health. In this class, the professor said that adding Fluoride to municipal water supplies was beneficial for the dental health of the citizens who lived in the areas it supplied water for, that Fluoride in drinking water was only possibly detrimental for people who sourced their drinking water from underground wells because of the high levels of Fluoride. Even then the only detrimental effect would be contracting dental fluorosis. The course didn’t touch on fluoride’s other effects to the human body. With some research and intense Googling, I discovered that Fluoride used to be prescribed to people in the 1950’s to suppress the thyroid gland, a gland in our neck that excretes hormones that regulates our metabolism, cardiovascular system, and growth development. Our thyroid health affects our energy levels, sexual health, weight, among many other things. It’s strange to me that very few people in America talk about how we casually put a thyroid-suppressing mineral in our water. Apparently, it’s even banned in certain places in Western Europe. Are American’s so concerned with the aesthetics of our teeth that we completely ignore how this could be affecting our thyroid health? In the town I grew up in, we had fluoride added to our drinking water at 1ppm which is 1mg per liter. In the town I currently reside in, the 2016 water quality report said that we have 4ppm in our water which is 4mg per liter. As someone who drinks approximately 2 liters of water a day, I’m ingesting 8mg of Fluoride a day, and that’s not including the Fluoride I’m accidentally ingesting from toothpaste and fluoride-containing foods. In study a published in the British Medical Journal on the ingestion of fluoride, all subjects who ingested the fluoride were found to have damage to the gastric mucosa, which is an essential part of the stomach lining that protects the stomach from stomach acid and lubricates food for digestion. After sifting through fluoridealert.com, I’m definitely concerned with how much fluoride I ingest on a daily basis.
Of course after learning about the potential dangers of ingesting Fluoride I want it to gtfo of my drinking water ASAP! Apparently it’s not as easy as owning a silly little Brita, not that I or anyone I live with fills it anyways. Brita water filters use activated charcoal to filter tap water, which can filter out some chlorine and metals but not fluoride. But apparently it requires extra filtration, that usually ends up being fairly expensive. The only way to remove fluoride from tap water is through reverse osmosis, deionization, and using activated alumina. You can purchase certain portable water filters or install them in your home, which can add up to some pretty hefty prices. As a college student, this isn’t really a viable option for me since I will be renting for an indefinite number of years before I can find a home that I can install permanent water filters. Yes, I totally asked for a large portable water filter for Christmas, because I sure can’t afford to buy one myself. The one I’ve been interested in was recommended by my fav blog Empowered Sustenance in this article. Crossing my fingers that my parents are super rad and wants to support my health (hint hint fam that’s you). Another way you can avoid Fluoride is by drinking spring water. Some spring water can still contain fluoride, but you can find ones that have zero to 0.1ppm fluoride content. My only issue with spring water resides in how it gets to you. My local health food store sells gallon sizes of Colorado spring water from a Elderado Natural Spring Water, but they come in plastic containers. An option I’m going to look into is their delivery service so that I can reduce my carbon footprint by not buying plastic. The last option to remove fluoride is distillation, but ain’t nobody got time for that, especially as a college student. As someone who drinks a large quantity of water a day, this is going to be a huge change for me. Even my current Twitter handle is “drink more water pls“, where I frequently annoy my peers by reminding them to drink more water. Now I’m not saying don’t drink water, because it’s basically the essence of life and makes up about 70% of our physical human bodies, but I’m always a huge believe in that you should know what you’re putting into your body. No one thinks about how water can negatively affect your health, but I learned from an early age to question everything and this just solidifies that ideal.
Now I’m not saying that Fluoride is the main cause for my health problems, but it’s definitely a factor the universe has shown me to look more into. I’m determined, curious, and excited for where this discovery will lead me. I hope this has helped inform you more about your drinking water or at least supported you in seeing how the universe has been sending you some signs.