Thyroid, Iodine, Flouride and Musical Chairs
So, we all grew up with the dentist giving us flouride treatments as kids. Well, we are grown now, and we do not need that anymore. Let's use the anaolgy of musical chairs to talk about a common ingredient in toothpaste and mouthwash that can disrupt your thyroid. Follow me on this.
Picture a game of musical chairs. Musical chairs is a childhood game that involves walking around a circle of chairs and pouncing into one when the music stops. Your goal is to sit down in a chair when the music stops. But sometimes you get bumped right out of your spot by someone bigger, faster or just more sneaky than you. Fluoride can mess up your thyroid by grabbing the seat meant for iodine.
Iodine acts to produce thyroid hormones T3 and T4 and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) in the thyroid. However, fluoride from our toothpaste and mouthwash can be absorbed in the mouth or swallowed in small amounts, and it also finds its way to the iodine receptors in the thyroid!
Our thyroid allows the fluoride to sit where the iodine belongs. But fluoride does not activate thyroid hormones, it just blocks iodine from taking a seat and doing its job; this may cause the thyroid to malfunction. Yep. Sometimes another chemical can fool our bodies into accepting it in the desired chemical's "chair." When this happens, the intruding chemical or compound is taking the place of, and disrupting the function of an important vitamin or mineral, or hormone activator in our body.
If you have been diagnosed with thyroid issues, you may consider ditching your flouride toothpaste, and skipping the flouride treatments at the dentist. You are already grown, and have formed the hard enamel on your teeth years ago. (As a note, if a child gets a healthy diet with calcium and all of the recommended minerals, they may not need fluoride after age seven. But they do need to brush their teeth twice a day and floss once a day- that is another discussion for another time.)