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A different perspective on the fluoride issue

December 5, 2012
Pine Island Eagle

To the editor:

I want to share a different perspective and my personal experience with fluoride and why it should not be added to our water. In West Africa where I am from originally, we do not have fluoride in the water. Even today, we do not have any dentists, toothbrushes, toothpaste, flossing or any western "dental care" whatsoever in the village. We also happen to consume huge amounts of sugar ... mangoes, strong tea with sugar and porridge made with a heavy addition of sugar. In my 13 years in the village, I can say that I saw no evidence of tooth-aches, gum issues or any dental issues. In the elderly, occasionally, a tooth would be pulled, but this was rare. Yet here in the states, every single person I know has crowns, cavities and has had issues with their gums requiring deep scaling treatments.

When I bring my drummers here to visit from Africa, I often take them to the doctor and dentist to just give them a check up. Dentists are shocked to see grown adults with not one spec of silver and not one cavity in their mouths. I've had dentists even call their dentist friends while I'm in their office so that they can come over and take a look for themselves! Many dentists told me that they've never seen an adult with no cavities.

So, you might ask how is this possible. The answer is very simple and it's not just in Africa. It's also in many parts of India and other countries as well, and its called a chew stick. Yes, a simple little wooden branch or stick from a soft wood tree, and not even a special tree. Everyone keeps one in their mouth and simply chews at it all the time. The end of the stick becomes frayed like a broom and serves as a brush and even as a toothpick. There is also what we call Nanna, which is peppermint that many Africans add to their tea and also eat fresh leaves for the minty flavor and for its cooling properties That's it. This alone should be proof enough that the only thing we need to do with our teeth is to brush them. Period. Dentists also wrongly advise against sugary foods and this is just simply not true.

And as a side note having nothing to do with fluoride, in Africa we also consume huge amounts of so called "harmful heart-clogging fats," including the dreaded palm oil and coconut oil. We even heat these up, add a ton of sugar and eat it like a sweet soup all winter long! For many years the medical profession has warned us about reducing fat, and especially coconut and palm oils. As most of you know now, this was also absolutely not true. Today, you can go to any health food store and pay a very high price for the new miracle cure called "organic coconut oil," "fish oil" or "flax seed oil!"

Please vote for no fluoride in our water.

Ndakhte Ndiaye

Saint James City



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