How to Remove Fluoride from Drinking Water

Easy Ways To Remove Fluoride from Tap Water

Reverse osmosis
A reverse osmosis filter will remove fluoride from drinking water. Lebazele / Getty Images

Most people are aware that there is a controversy surrounding public fluoridation of drinking water. Here is a list of ways to obtain drinking water without fluoride. In addition, I've listed water purification methods which do not remove fluoride from water.

Ways to Remove Fluoride from Water

  • Reverse Osmosis Filtration
    This is used to purify several types of bottled water (not all), so some bottled waters are unfluoridated. Reverse osmosis systems are generally unaffordable for personal use.
  • Activated Alumina Defluoridation Filter
    These filters are used in locales where fluorosis is prevalent. They are relatively expensive (lowest price I saw was $30/filter) and require frequent replacement, but do offer an option for home water filtration.
  • Distillation Filtration
    There are commercially available distillation filters that can be purchased to remove fluoride from water. On a related note: When looking at bottled water, keep in mind that 'distilled water' does not imply that a product is suitable for drinking water and other undesirable impurities may be present.​

These Do NOT Remove Fluoride

  • Brita, Pur, and most other filters.
    Most water filters do not remove fluoride. Some websites about fluoride removal state otherwise, but I checked the product descriptions on the companies' websites to confirm that fluoride is left in the water.
  • Boiling Water
    This will concentrate the fluoride rather than reduce it.
  • Freezing Water
    Freezing water does not affect the concentration of fluoride.

Simple Steps to Reduce Fluoride Exposure

  • Don't take fluoride supplements.
  • Avoid using non-stick cookware.
    Teflon and certain other coatings contain fluorine, which may be released during cooking.
  • Read labels on bottled beverages.
    Unless they are made using distilled or reverse-osmosis water, they are probably made with fluoridated public water.
  • Consider using unfluoridated toothpaste.
  • Avoid drinking black or red tea.
    There are many health benefits associated with chemical compounds found in tea, but this may be a beverage to avoid if you need to reduce your fluorine intake. Black and red tea come from two different types of plants, but both leaves naturally contain high amounts of fluorine.
  • Be wary of tinned fish and canned food items.
    Fluoride may be used as a preservative.
  • Avoid black or red rock salt or items containing black or red rock salt.
  • Avoid using chewing tobacco.
  • Avoid long term use of medication that contains fluorine.
    Certain antidepressants and medications for osteoporosis contain fluorine.
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Your Citation
Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "How to Remove Fluoride from Drinking Water." ThoughtCo, Apr. 12, 2017, Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2017, April 12). How to Remove Fluoride from Drinking Water. Retrieved from Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "How to Remove Fluoride from Drinking Water." ThoughtCo. (accessed November 22, 2017).