Fluoride in Kombucha? Why I Stopped Drinking Kombucha and Tea

Is there fluoride in kombucha? Yes. There is a lot of fluoride in kombucha, because there is a lot of fluoride in tea. Which is why I stopped drinking it.

Fluoride in Kombucha? Why I Stopped Drinking Kombucha and Tea

If you're suffering from hormonal problems, migraine headaches, cysts in your breasts or ovaries, cavities, bone loss, or other health challenges, it could be the fluoride in the tea you're drinking. Read on to learn more.

Fluoride in Kombucha? Why I Stopped Drinking Kombucha and Tea

What Is Kombucha?

Kombucha is a drink I discovered almost a decade ago when I started learning how to eat healthier. I had never heard of it before but when I came across the Weston Price diet in 2007, I started drinking kombucha and even making my own.

I made kombucha for a few years and then I stopped, but we still buy it from time to time and I've still been recommending it on my website. As of this week, I will no longer drink kombucha or tea. I can no longer recommend these drinks.

Fluoride in Kombucha and Tea: Connecting the Dots

There are a number of women in my life who have been having hormonal problems. From acne to cysts in their breasts and ovaries, to painful periods and hypothyroid symptoms. These are some of the people closest to me, and I've been trying to put the pieces of the puzzle together to see what was going on with them and fix their health problems.

Turns out, all the roads lead back to fluoride. Specifically the fluoride in the kombucha and tea they are drinking.

  • Our nanny, Jennifer, 25, has been suffering from chronic migraine headaches, very painful ovarian cysts, painful PMS symptoms, and persistent acne.
  • My friend Maryam, in her late 40s, has chronic migraine headaches, cysts in her breasts, painful PMS symptoms, and persistent acne.
  • Maryam's daughter, Ghaz, in her late 20s, has persistent acne and painful periods.
  • My friend Angelique, in her 40s, has persistent acne and hypothyroid symptoms.

What do they all have in common? They're all drinking a lot of tea and kombucha.

  • Jennifer has been drinking 16-32 ounces of kombucha every day.
  • Maryam and Angelique have been drinking at least 2-4 (16-32 ounces) cups of tea per day.
  • Ghaz was drinking tea every morning.

How I Learned About Fluoride in Kombucha and Tea

I read [easyazon_link identifier=”069272155X” locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]The End of Acne[/easyazon_link] by Melissa Gardner a few weeks ago and it completely rocked my world. You can read my whole book review here.

[easyazon_infoblock align=”none” identifier=”069272155X” locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]

Melissa was able to completely get rid of the cystic acne that plagued her for decades, from the time she was a teenager, just by eliminating fluoride.

But it's not just acne. There are many other health problems that are caused by consuming fluoride. For example, hormonal problems including diabetes, obesity, adrenal exhaustion, hypothyroidism, infertility, PCOS, cysts in the breasts and in the ovaries, migraines, and on and on.

This is because fluoride blocks the uptake (absorption) of iodine. Iodine is critical when it comes to healthy hormones. Iodine is stored in the thyroid, breasts, ovaries, and in men, in the prostate. Fluoride and other halides like bromide are like “tricksters” that take up residence in our body in the place of iodine. The body then thinks it has all the iodine it needs, but in reality, it's a squatter called fluoride which is not a nutrient that feeds us, but instead, a poison.

How Much Fluoride Are You Consuming?

A lot of people think they are not consuming much fluoride because it's not in their drinking water. Maybe they have well water or they're using reverse osmosis filter. But there is actually a lot of fluoride most of the food we're eating and the beverages we consume.

Remember, fluoride consumption is cumulative. So if you drink a glass of fluoridated water, that's just one input. Many soft drinks, fruit juices, beer wine, all contain fluoride. And that's just drinks. The food we eat contains fluoride if it's processed with fluoridated water. I'm in the process of making a chart of all the foods with the most fluoride in order of how much they have.

Well, it turns out that one of the foods with the most fluoride is tea. Kombucha is made with tea and therefore it is very high in fluoride.

Why Is There So Much Fluoride in Kombucha and Tea?

Camellia sinensis is a species of evergreen shrub or small tree that has leaves and leaf buds that are used to produce tea. For whatever reason, this species of plant acts like a sponge for fluoride in the soil, sucking up the fluoride and storing it in its leaves. Perhaps this is a natural defense mechanism against predators.

This is true of all tea plants, regardless of the variety or species: black tea, green tea, white tea, even rooibos tea. Mature tea plants have more fluoride in the leaves. Younger tea plants have less.

Fluoride in Kombucha and Tea? Is Organic Tea Really Better?

When I first started making kombucha I read on the Weston Price website that fluoride was not a problem as long as you use organic tea when making kombucha. But it turns out there is no real evidence of that.

Sally Fallon Morell writes on the WAPF website:

Researchers looking at the toxic effects of fluoride have recently raised concerns about kombucha because most commercial tea is very high in fluoride. Fortunately, kombucha made with organic tea contains very little fluoride. We had fluoride levels tested in organic black tea and in the kombucha made with the tea. The levels in the tea were only slightly higher than those in the filtered water from which it was made and actually slightly lower in the kombucha than in the black tea. These results suggest that the process of fermentation actually removes some of the fluoride from the tea and may explain why the kombucha “mushroom” eventually gets black. These older, darkened “mushrooms” can be replaced with the newer, cleaner “babies” that grow on top of the original “mushroom” during the fermentation process.

Given everything that went down last year with the FCLO scandal (read my post), I no longer trust Sally Fallon Morell and the Weston Price Foundation as a good source of information for nutrition and health.

But even if I did trust WAPF, this is the only study Fallon Morell references as evidence that organic tea is lower in fluoride than conventionally grown tea. Where did these test results come from? She said WAPF did the tests? There's not even a link.

Melissa Gardner, author of [easyazon_link identifier=”069272155X” locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]The End of Acne[/easyazon_link] raised similar questions about Sally's claims:

“In the article, [Fallon Morell] states that the organic black tea contained “very little fluoride” yet the chart in the reference section reveals it measured at .94 ppm. This is higher than the “optimal level” of fluoride in drinking water recently proposed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (0.7 ppm). Some of this fluoride came from the filtered water used to make the tea (it measured at .62 ppm), but still, this small study did not give me confidence that organic black tea is low in fluoride.

How many samples were measured? Was it just one? What brand of organic black tea was tested? How were the plants grown? I would need answers to these important questions and more before I could conclude that organic tea is low in fluoride.”

Flawed Tests for Fluoride in Tea

Melissa's questions about how the testing was done are spot on, as it turns out that testing for fluoride in tea is not so easy to do. Apparently the old way of testing for fluoride in tea was probably inaccurate. In fact, a recent study showed that there is a lot more fluoride in tea than previously believed.

In Melissa's book, [easyazon_link identifier=”069272155X” locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]The End of Acne,[/easyazon_link] she references a study from the Medical College of Georgia:

“When we tested the patients' tea brands using a traditional method, we found the fluoride concentrations to be very low, so we wondered if that method was detecting all of the fluoride,” Whitford said, noting that the tea plant, Camellia sinensis, creates a quandary when measuring fluoride. Unique among other plants, it accumulates huge concentrations of fluoride and aluminum in its leaves – each mineral ranges from 600 to more than 1,000 milligrams per kilogram of leaves. When the leaves are brewed for tea, some of the minerals leach into the beverage.

Most published studies about black tea traditionally have used a method of measuring fluoride that doesn't account for the amount that combines with aluminum to form insoluble aluminum fluoride, which is not detected by the fluoride electrode. Whitford compared that method with a diffusion method, which breaks the aluminum-fluoride bond so that all fluoride in the tea samples can be extracted and measured.

He tested seven brands of store-bought black tea, steeping each for five minutes in deionized water, which contains no fluoride. The amount of fluoride in each sample was 1.4 to 3.3 times higher using the diffusion method than the traditional method.

So what this new study is saying is that the old way of testing the amount of fluoride in tea was likely flawed because the fluoride was binding with the aluminum. With this new way of testing, fluoride in tea is likely 1.4-3.3 times higher than they thought.

Dr. Weston Price and Kombucha

It is very interesting to me that Dr. Weston Price never recommended kombucha in his book, [easyazon_link identifier=”0916764206″ locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]Nutrition and Physical Degeneration[/easyazon_link]. Just as he did not recommend FCLO (fermented cod liver oil). Seems to me this is something Sally Fallon Morell recommends, but not Dr. Price.

Perhaps you believe Sally's claim that the kombucha fermentation process somehow magically reduces the fluoride in the tea. However, I do not. And as such, I don't think we have sufficient evidence to disprove the fact that there is fluoride in tea, and as a result, there is fluoride in kombucha.

Fluoride in Kombucha & Tea Makes It Not Worth the Risk

I cannot imagine going to the trouble of making kombucha and ingesting more fluoride, when most of us are already consuming too much.

If you or someone you know struggles with any of the health conditions I listed above from acne to hormonal problems to migraines to cavities or bone loss, I would not recommend drinking kombucha or tea. In fact, I think it's risky even if you don't have any symptoms.

What To Drink Instead of Kombucha

A great alternative to kombucha that doesn't have fluoride is water kefir soda. You can make it at home with filtered water, and it's naturally fermented. It only costs a penny per ounce to make, which costs 1/3 of the price of soda.

What To Drink Instead of Tea

Coffee is a good option. Look for [easyazon_link identifier=”B00LY95FBU” locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]organic coffee[/easyazon_link]. We have a Keurig, and we buy the [easyazon_link identifier=”B007TGDXMK” locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]organic coffee pods on Amazon[/easyazon_link] that are 90% compostable. Be sure to use filtered water (filtered for fluoride) to make your coffee.

You can also switch to herbal tea — such as [easyazon_link identifier=”B003ULJJN0″ locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]mint tea[/easyazon_link], [easyazon_link identifier=”B001VNGN9C” locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]chamomile[/easyazon_link], or [easyazon_link identifier=”B0009F3S7I” locale=”US” tag=”cheeseslave0e-20″]ginger tea[/easyazon_link]. We've started drinking herbal iced tea with dried stevia and it's fabulous. I grow various herbs in the garden (they grow like weeds): spearmint, chocolate mint, lemon balm, lemongrass, and yes stevia. You can brew these herbs fresh or dried. It's so easy!

Please Share This Post

Do you have a friend or family member who suffers from any of the above issues? Are they drinking tea or kombucha or other foods and drinks high in fluoride? Please share this post.

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Do you have experience with fluoride in kombucha or tea? Please share below.

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Fluoride in Kombucha: Why I Stopped Drinking Kombucha and Tea

Find Me Online

Ann Marie Michaels

I have 25 years of experience in digital and online media & marketing. I started my career in Silicon Valley and Los Angeles, working at some of the world’s top ad agencies. In 2007, after my first child was born, I started this little food blog which I grew to over 250K monthly unique website visitors and over 350K social media followers. For nearly 15 years, I've helped my audience of mostly moms and women 25-65 cook for their families and live a healthier lifestyle.

 The year after I started the blog, I founded a blog network in the health & wellness space called Village Green Network. I started the company on my coffee table and bootstrapped the business to over $1.3 million in annual revenue within 5 years. During that time, I helped a number of our bloggers become six figure earners. After being censored on almost every social media platform for telling the After being censored on almost every social media platform from Facebook and Instagram to Pinterest and Twitter, and being deplatformed on Google, I am now deployed as a digital soldier, writing almost exclusively about politics on my blog Cheeseslave.com. Because who can think about food when we are fighting the second revolutionary war and third world war? Don't worry, there will be more recipes one day. After the war is over.

79 thoughts on “Fluoride in Kombucha? Why I Stopped Drinking Kombucha and Tea

  1. Hi Anne Marie,

    Hope you are well! Your article caught my attention and raise some questions.

    I think I need to understand the numbers and this is what simply needs to be done.

    We can quote this or that study or this and that number. But I think the true test is grab a few bottles of kombucha from the store and measure the fluoride level and go from there. Does it show more or less than .7 mg/liter

    Furthermore at the same time with the same method, measure milk or homemade orange juice, drinking water and such, what is the fluoride level there? Keep in mind that so much fluoride is added to the water and that is used to water orange trees, grass for cows.

    Then there is the issue of natural fluoride (calcium?) and man made fluoride (sodium).

    Best,
    Eric

    1. Hi, Eric, thank you for your comment.

      If you reread the post, it’s very hard to accurately test fluoride in tea.

      The issue is that tea plants absorb fluoride from the soil and store it in great quantities in their leaves. It it is believed it was a way for the plants to protect themselves from predators (animals that would eat them).

      From what I have read there is no difference between synthetic fluoride or natural fluoride when it comes to our health. While sodium fluoride is worse, both are bad for your health, weaken bones and teeth and cause hormonal and other problems.

      1. Hi Anne Marie,

        To clarify what I mean is

        You said the chart reveals in reference section that black tea is .94 ppm and that it may possibly be 1.4 – 3.3 times higher due to different testing and way beyond .7ppm determined by EPA.

        The thing is .7ppm is determined by HHS to be optimal level “to prevent teeth decay”.

        The problem is we know that Department of Health , ADA, FDA telling us fluoride will reduce tooth decay is BS rocket science.

        Furthermore, the Department of Health says the the current enforceable drinking water standard for fluoride is 4.0 mg/L. This is the maximum amount that is allowed in water from public water systems which mean our fluoride level would be 4 times higher than 1 mg/L than from water brewed with tea.

        Those are the numbers we have and we honestly have NO inkling of how much or little fluoride or whether it prevents cavity and all because we have no real data or science and it will NEVER happen because US government policy has always been to ‘fluoridate our water’ to help prevent cavities.

        So that brings up to ‘testing’ – the only true testing we have is to take milk, kombucha, tea, coffee, water etc. from various brands, type (organic vs non organic), can of beans, etc. and test them all to see what the actual numbers are side by side and so forth.

        I wonder how much it would cost to do that?

        Thanks,
        Eric

  2. Hi there. So glad for the info. I wanted to just make one comment. My understanding is that rooibos tea is made from a completely different family of plants, actually a type of legume. And since the ability of plants to uptake flouride is fairly rare, I suspect that rooibos might be an OK tea to drink. Can you reference where you got the info on rooibos tea specifically, as opposed to black, green or white?

    1. Thank you for your comment. Yes! I need to fix that part of the post… Rooibos is a different species, not the same as black, green and white teas. You are correct.

      However, sadly, rooibos is still high in fluoride.

      This article is good: https://www.slweb.org/ftrcpersonalstories_aliss.html

      This woman spent a long time researching fluoride. She writes (excerpt):

      “I tried drinking South African Rooibos tea but it gave me the same symptoms, despite having no caffeine at all. Now I know why – the Rooibos plant stores fluoride in its leaves just like the regular tea plant.”

      Sorry!

  3. Is water Kifer dairy free? I usually drink soda water and I have a soda stream so I just carbonate my well water or my filtered water. But, right now I’m pregnant and I hate carbonated water and I have been drinking a lot of tea and keep getting bad headaches. Can I buy herbal tea in the store and do u know which are safe during pregnancy?

    1. Yes water kefir is dairy free.

      You can buy herbal tea in the store — look for organic. I don’t know the types that are safe for pregnant and nursing moms… There are teas sold at the health food store specifically for mothers to be… Here is one (affiliate link): https://amzn.to/2chuXLT

      1. So after browsing through Melissa’s book I’m curious about raisins, my 2 year old eats them a lot. Is it enough to just buy organic or should we cut them out completely?

  4. I understand a large dose of the fluoride found in brewed tea actually comes from the bags not the tea leaves. Just to throw that into the pot if info here .
    Since you are recommending a Keurig at the end of the article you might want to look up/google ” Keurig mold and biofilm ” . I love how you share what you are learning 🙂

    1. It’s not the bags, it’s the tea leaves. If you read the post above, I explain why. It is because tea plants absorb fluoride from the soil and store it in the leaves.

      Here is another reference:

      “Tea plant (Camellia sinensis) accumulates and stores more fluoride by
      absorbing it from the air and soil than any other plant. Up to 98% of the fluoride in tea plants is stored in leaves [9, 10]. Thus, tea leaves are usually very rich in fluoride. The fluoride content increases with the maturation stage of the leaves. Fluoride content in tea has increased dramatically over the past 20 years due to industrial contamination [11]. ”

      Source: file:///Users/AMS/Downloads/60662-112471-1-PB.pdf

      Regarding the Keurig mold issue, I addressed that on your post on Facebook. This has been debunked — the machines have to be cleaned with vinegar periodically like any other coffee maker.

        1. Yes, it is the specific type of plant. Camellia sinensis is the species that absorbs a lot of fluoride from the soil. So this includes black tea, green tea, yellow tea, white tea, etc.

          Herbal teas are not the same species.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camellia_sinensis

      1. What I am surprised about is that you are not concerned about using a Keurig and those k-cups when they are all made of plastic and are heating it. That seems to be a far larger concern and is widely known.

  5. As I was reading this I was drinking a mug of Ceylon tea instead of my usual coffee…oops. I do use a fluoride filter on my drinking/cooking water at home and I don’t drink soda or juice so I’m probably in better shape than most people. I love kombucha, but don’t drink it often. I’ll be looking forward to future articles on this topic and I’d love to see any charts you put together in the future on fluoride levels. I do worry a bit about all the vegetables I eat because I’m pretty sure the plants are watered with fluoride containing water.

  6. Just curious — does this new information on fluoride in processed foods change your stance on allowing your children to eat Lucky Charms on Saturdays?

  7. Thanks for the info however I don’t think the things you are using to replace are in your health’s best interest. Kurig cups (K cups) are made of plastic which when the hot water passes through to brew your coffee will leach into your beverage. These hormone disruptors will also cause ovarian, breast, acne and prostate cysts and lower fertility. Also the stevia plant is suspected to cause infertility and hormone disruption.

    1. Hi, Mary, thanks for your comment.

      The Keurig K cups we use and that I recommend do not leach plastic into the coffee. (affiliate link): https://amzn.to/2cmEmBV

      This is from the FAQ on Amazon:

      “97% of the components of our OneCup™ (by weight) are certified as biodegradable in an industrial composting plant. This applies to all components including, inks and adhesives, the inner bag holding the pods, the pod ring, and the pod lid. Only the inner bag is certified for compost at home, remaining components of the pod except the filter should be disposed of in a manner to allow composting in a municipal or industrial facility.

      The lid
      The OneCup™ lid is made from renewable plant based film derived from renewable resources such as pulp, paper and wood.

      The ring
      The OneCup™ ring is not made from petroleum, like other brands. We choose to use a renewable plant based material. These sources of the material can include vegetable oil, various plant starches, and by-products from trees.
      The filter

      Currently the OneCup™ mesh filter is made from food-grade polyester that provides maximum flavor extraction during the brewing process. We are working on a biodegradable alternative to the current filter for the near future.

      The inner bag
      The inner bag containing the OneCup™ pods is made from wood pulp, typically sourced from hard wood species such as eucalyptus. The wood pulp is sourced from suppliers who only operate sustainable forestry management principles.

      The outer box
      The retail box is made from 100% recycled paperboard with a minimum 35% post-consumer content and printed with inks made from renewable resources.

  8. Hi. I have been making my own tea with nettle leaves and raspberry leaves. Would this be a tea to avoid due to a high level of fluoride?
    Great read! Thanks for the information.

  9. Great article! Thanks for the info. Can you brew kombucha with herbal tea instead of green or black? I used the wrong bag of loose leaf tea one time and it was herbal – and the batch turned out just fine. Just wondering if I did this on purpose, if it would be a safer way brew kombucha.

  10. I was also wondering about red raspberry leaf. I’ve heard it’s very helpful during pregnancy but I will avoid if high in fluoride.

    I know you have become pretty disillusioned with WAPF, understandably so! But I’ve followed their diet for pregnant and nursing mothers (using EVCLO in moderation rather than fermented ever since the scandal) for a few years while I’ve been having babies. Do you still agree with their pregnancy diet recommendations? Or are there aspects of their guidelines (other than the cod liver oil) that you would be wary of? I certainly don’t want to do anything to put myself or future babies at risk!

    1. Yes see my comment above I think red raspberry leaf is OK but I have to look it up…

      I will have to go back and look at the pregnancy diet rec’s… I think they’re probably OK. Of course I wouldn’t use the FCLO or NutraPro cod liver oil based on what we know about them. And no kombucha obviously.

  11. Thank you so much for all the information you’re providing! 🙂

    I know this is off topic, but I was wondering if you have researched pink himalayan salt and fluroride content? I always thought it was healthy, but then someone told me that this salt contains high levels of fluoride, so now I don’t know what to believe 🙁 Do you use himalayan salt?

    Thanks in advance!

    Victoria 🙂

  12. I have heard for a long time that there is fluoride in tea, but I always heard that organic tea was free of fluoride, what do you think about that?

  13. I found this interesting, but there’s no denying the fact that I, and among many others drink kombucha every day. No symptoms. No drama’s. I am also fitter than most I know. I have drank it for years and credit it for some major changes in my life.

  14. Thank you, for the very informative article. If I could make one suggestion, it would be to skip using the popular Keureg coffee maker and purchase a stainless steel coffee percolator. Even if the pods and coffee maker are BPA free, and I’m not sure if they are, you still have steamy hot water coming into plastic which leaches chemicals into your organic coffee. I made the switch a few years ago and every one loves my coffee. Especially, those he who were drinking coffee before the 70’show. They all say that they forgot how good percolate coffee tastes.

  15. Thank you, for the very informative article. If I could make one suggestion, it would be to skip using the popular Keureg coffee maker and purchase a stainless steel coffee percolator. Even if the pods and coffee maker are BPA free, and I’m not sure if they are, you still have steamy hot water coming into plastic which leaches chemicals into your organic coffee. I made the switch a few years ago and every one loves my coffee. Especially, those he who were drinking coffee before the 70’show. They all say that they forgot how good percolate coffee tastes.

    1. Stainless steel leaches chromium and nickel, and I believe cadmium too (forgot) so that's really not better. Just cook your water in a lead-free clay pot like I do.

  16. Hi! I love reading and watching all of your stuff! Thank you for putting yourself out there and informing us of all of the new information on our health and food!

    I am wondering though, if you have any sources that I can show people on the the different types of fluoride and their effects on health even if it’s “natural” fluoride. After informing some moms on Facebook about the kombucha and tea containing fluoride, one so far has said that there is a big difference between the natural and synthetic fluorides, indicating that safety shouldn’t be of concern to the natural type. Thoughts? I don’t trust it either way, but I’m just wondering if there are some solid sources I can show people. Thanks!

    1. Hi, Vanna, I’m sorry, your comment accidentally got auto-moved to trash.

      Natural fluoride is still damaging to bones and human health. You can google it — there are pictures of people with terrible bone loss in China and Russia from drinking water in areas where they have high levels of natural fluoride. If you want I can find those slides..

      1. Hello, I am not as much on my game as you with sources and all…But I felt convinced after several debating articles that natural fluoride was at least not as bad as synthetic in moderation, and Im pretty sure that the studies show without a doubt that Asians have less bone fractures and decay than Standard American Diet.

  17. Hi! I was wondering about kombucha extract. There is a company that makes an extract from the actual scobys and says that there is all the probiotic and liver boosting properties because it is cold processed. They use the scobys and not the tea. Do you think that would be high in fluoride? I’ve read about so many people achieving health benefits from kombucha, there must be a reason. What if you only consumed 6-8 oz a day? Just thinking…. Hmmm.

    1. Hi, Katie,

      Well… on the SCOBYs… I’m thinking SCOBYs have got to be very high in fluoride. Why do I think this? Because they’re soaking in tea 24/7 and tea is super high in fluoride.

      Fluoride is stored in bones, teeth and glands in humans… so why wouldn’t it be stored in a SCOBY, a living tissue of sorts? I would think it would be stored…

      They have shown in studies that the longer the teabags steep in tea, the more fluoride the tea contains.

      So I would not use an extract from a SCOBY.

      Consuming 6-8 oz of kombucha a day… let’s do the math…

      According to this article in Science Daily, (also referenced above in the article) the old testing methods of testing for fluoride were not accurate. The new diffusion testing shows that fluoride is as high as 9 mg per liter of tea.

      There are about 4 cups in a liter (it’s close to a quart). So let’s say you’re only drinking a cup of kombucha per day (8 oz).

      That’s 2.25 mg of fluoride per day just from your kombucha.

      “…the NAS’s Institute of Medicine (IOM) has established an intake of 10 mg/day as the “upper tolerable intake” of exposure. The IOM did so based on its assertion that an intake exceeding “10 mg/day for ten or more years” causes “skeletal changes consistent with preclinical or stage 1 skeletal fluorosis.” (Source)

      So with just ONE cup of kombucha a day, you are already over 20% of the way to the UPPER TOLERABLE limit of fluoride.

      If you factor in all the other sources of fluoride you are consuming each day (cereal, bread, salsa, ketchup, fruit juice, fruits and vegetables that are not organic, fluoridated water, pharmaceutical drugs, toothpaste, deodorant, chicken broth that is not organic, sardines, anchovies, canned beans, beer, wine, soft drinks… and on and on) it’s easy to see how you could reach the upper tolerable limit.

      Remember, we are storing fluoride in our bones and glands. And it has a 20-year half life. So adding more fluoride to a body that is already storing a lot… I don’t think it’s a good idea.

      In my mind, tea and kombucha are not worth the risk.

  18. I know you don’t trust the wapf but I tend to like the healthy home economist. Here is an article she posted. https://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/fluoride-in-kombucha-should-you-be-concerned/

  19. Hi Ann Marie,
    Do you have a new or updated complete comprehensive list of fluoride sources ready made for us to be aware of yet?
    We’d love it 🙂 Thank you!

    1. Yes! Here it is: https://www.cheeseslave.com/top-5-sources-of-fluoride-its-not-your-toothpaste-or-drinking-water/

      Also, I’m going to be putting a post up soon with a fluoride calculator you can use to see how much fluoride you are consuming.

  20. Question about the validity of new testing method:
    You stated:
    Most published studies about black tea traditionally have used a method of measuring fluoride that doesn’t account for the amount that combines with aluminum to form insoluble aluminum fluoride, which is not detected by the fluoride electrode. Whitford compared that method with a diffusion method, which breaks the aluminum-fluoride bond so that all fluoride in the tea samples can be extracted and measured.

    Is insoluble aluminum fluoride bioavailable or does it pass through your system and get eliminated? If the molecule is to large to assimilate then the concern over fluoride in tea should be minimal.

  21. I thought there is a difference between natural occurring fluoride & fluoridation. I don't know alot about kombucha, And I do know too much of just about anything isn't good; as well as not enough of some things isn't good either. Also some studies done with extracts instead of the whole plant might be misleading, also. Since the research is new, so -to-speak on natural substances, using an extract instead of the whole, couldn't they be leaving out important components that might change the total effect of the outcome. The thing that bothers me is the fact that tea has been around for thousands?? of years. Always thought of as healthy. As is water (except most water is contaminated, now) depending how you consume it.) My point here, water, no matter, too much at one time, can kill you. Big pharm is out to discredit natural healthy everything.. The fact is there is way to much of the industrial fluoride in our water, which by itself is a health hazard. I have a link to what I believe to be a very reliable source of good information on tea, https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/food-beverages/tea. As far as your friends & family seeming to have be having adverse effects, there are so many more things out there now that could very well be the cause of these adverse effects. Maybe the combination of natural occurring fluoride with the fluoride in the water is just too much. But the fluoride in the water is enough to be way over the top. I understand where you are coming from & your concerns. But I just have a hard time conceiving that tea is the culprit. Now that health benefits of natural food & beverages is coming to light, I hate seeing any of it being discredited. I totally believe it is the water that is causing problems. And I'd rather see the blame go there, even it being a natural substance, it has become totally contaminated by man & desperately needs fixing.

    1. Yes sodium fluoride is what they add to water and calcium fluoride is what is naturally occurring in soil. However, they are both bad for you — both cause hormone disruption and bone loss.

      The problem with fluoride is it is cumulative and it is in multiple sources of the food and drinks we consume, from water to tea to kombucha to seafood and seaweed to Teflon cookware to non-organic fruits and vegetables (sprayed with cryolite) to wine and grapes and bones from animals that are not organic.

      Very hard to avoid.

  22. https://www.drweil.com/health-wellness/body-mind-spirit/dental-oral-health/is-the-fluoride-in-green-tea-harmful/

  23. Research into organic teas shows a much lowered amount of fluoride as fluoride is taken in through pesticides that have fluoride.

    Also, SCOBY is a filter and stores the fluoride thereby lowering the fluoride in the kombucha.. to the best of my knowledge.

    I just hate to see kombucha getting a bad rep when there is fluoride added directly to the water. yes yes everything is poison. measure the air quality and there's fluoride there because water has fluoride at this point and humidity put water in the air and we breathe air! soooo live a little and make healthier choices.

    diversification is a concept and im open to kefir.

    i do believe organic teas and decent water greatly reduce risk however! throwing it out of the kitchen and my life is drastic and dramatic in my humble opinion. relax <3

    1. Nope, I've done the research, organic tea is not lower in fluoride and the SCOBY does store the fluoride but there is no evidence that it sequesters it.

      I go into more detail in this post: https://www.cheeseslave.com/health-bloggers-kombucha-high-levels-of-fluoride/

  24. I am highly allergic to fluoride as it gives me an instant migraine. I have never had any issues drinking kombucha for the past 6 years , with getting migraines

  25. Are you eliminating or concerned about foods high in fluoride? Such as sunflower seeds, fresh fruits and vegetables like carrots, turnip and beet greens, dandelion,garlic,spinach, green leafy vegetables, and turnip greens?

  26. It seems to me that the problem is not really kombucha but the fact that governments are using our drinking water and irrigation water for disposal of toxic waste and it is getting through the entire environment.

  27. Wow really surprised with this. Is this true of the Synergy brand of Kombucha teas? I drink this daily and have for years. I never get any reaction but I react instantly to any kefir (with severe CFIDS exhaustion) and to sprirulina and chlorella which put me near comatose. (Googling I learned that they are toxic sea- weeds grown in sewage water! One sip of an organic drink that had chlorella and I was a goner for a week!)

  28. This article, like many things published online, contains the opinions and touted ‘research’ of one individual.

    This is absolutely no foundation to base fluoride and kombucha studies on.

    While I don’t doubt that there was some individual research, if you are researching online then your research is tainted. Unfortunately information online can come from any source and most of them are unreliable. I highly suggest that all of you go to your local library and speak with your chemist friends about the fermentation process.

    I personally find zero validity in this and do not believe the kombucha is harmful when brewed properly and taken in moderate quantities.

    Sorry, but one person’s research isn’t going to overturn 2000 years or more worth of health benefits on record!

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