Scientific reasoning: Dose makes the poison

Scientific Reasoning

Dose Makes the Poison Omission

Dose makes the poison is a subspecies of slanting by omission. Every chemical compound or element be it oxygen, water, or salt is toxic at some dose and safe or beneficial at some other dose. A characteristic strategy by pseudoscientists and alt-med bloggers is to write articles with (all-caps) headlines along the lines of MAJOR SCIENTIFIC JOURNAL ADMITS CHEMICAL X IS A TOXIN!!!!!!111!!!!11!! (sub-headline: Eliminate the toxin with this one weird trick—available through our online store). On the rare occasions where they link to the original article reading the abstract will usually reveal that the article itself refers to toxicity at a certain concentration, usually orders of magnitude greater than what people would encounter in their everyday lives. Although the dose makes the poison omission is a fan-favorite among all pseudoscience and alt-med writers it's most often found in the anti-fluoridation, anti-vax, and anti-GMO movement.

The dose makes the poison omission is the meat and potatoes of the anti-fluoridation movement. Here's a typical example.
Article on fluoride toxicity]
(a) "Documented risks of fluoride…" but no mention of the dosage at which at which those risks occur.
(b) “Untested chemicals should not be presumed to be safe to brain development, and chemicals in existing use and all new chemicals must therefore be tested for developmental neurotoxicity.” Notice that this is a decontexualized quote. The original quote refers to those industrial chemicals for which there isn't much data. Fluoride is well-tested.
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