Most Americans are deficient in iodine and unknowingly suffering for it. Every cell of the body needs iodine to function well. Iodine is vital for the thyroid, breasts, ovaries, prostate, adrenal glands, liver, lungs, and heart. It’s essential for fertility and pregnancy.
A lack of iodine leads to high and low thyroid conditions, fatigue, prostate cancer, breast cancer, fibrocystic breasts, ovarian cysts, uterine fibroids, atrial fibrillation, brain fog, ADHD, autism and more. (I’ve read accounts of total relief from fibrocystic breasts after two months of taking iodine.)
Beginning in about 1820, iodine was used to cure numerous ailments, from neurological issues to arthritis to lung disease. By 1924 we put iodine in our salt to prevent goiter. Up until the 1950s iodine was still an important medicine to treat a wide assortment of diseases.
But in 1948 a poorly conducted experiment postulated that iodine was harmful to the thyroid. (The timing coincided with an increased usage of other new pharmaceuticals. Perhaps a mere coincidence . . . ?)
Medical schools began to teach caution in using iodine. Mainstream doctors became convinced to steer clear of it. But this prejudice against iodine was an illusion. The body loves iodine and will release any excess of it naturally.
In the 1960s we had been adding iodine to our wheat flour as a conditioner. Unfortunately when the false fear of iodine arose, the flour industry removed iodine and put in bromine as a conditioner (1970s). We fell downhill from there.
Bromine is a toxic substance, one of the Halides. (Fluoride is another halide.) It cannot be used by our bodies, and it is a goitrogen (promotes goiters). Bromine sits on the iodine receptors in our body and inhibits us from holding iodine. No wonder we’re tired.
We’ve been eating bromine in our flour (bread, pasta, pastry, pie) since the 1970s. Bromine also goes into many other food additives, flame retardants, mattresses, pesticides, some medicines (Atrovent), and some sodas such as Mountain Dew and Fanta.
Only one flour was never bleached, never bromated: King Arthur. I bought a bag as soon as I heard, and I’m more than willing to pay five dollars instead of the usual three dollars for my bag of flour. (Bromated flour might make us eager to be gluten-free or on a paleo diet . . . )
Okay. In the year 2000 Dr. Guy Abraham MD began to research iodine deficiency and to spread the surprising news. Dr. David Brownstein found that 91% of the patients he tested had low levels of iodine, impairing their health to different degrees. Using iodine, he has successfully relieved not only every type of thyroid disease, but fibrocystic breast disease, breast cancer, ADHD hyperactive children, and other issues.
Brownstein advises lifelong iodine supplementation to counteract our environmental exposure to halides. (I’m wondering if, after a body gets stabilized, plenty of seaweed in the diet might fill the bill, but . . . ?)
Iodized table salt is not enough iodine, plus table salt is demineralized, chemicalized in processing, and not good for us.
So we’re starting to respect and value iodine because our body really needs it. It would take another whole page just to list the 40+ conditions that are helped by iodine: everything mentioned above plus skin trouble, psoriasis, diabetes, fertility, depression, infections, allergies and more. Iodine supports our immune system.
The first proponents of iodine supplementation were Dr. Abraham, Dr. David Brownstein, and Dr. Jorge Flechas. They’ve treated many thousands of patients successfully, including some seemingly hopeless cases. Dr. William Shevin is another well-known practitioner.
As we ingest supplemental iodine, we release the bromine and other toxins. We detoxify. Any excess iodine is excreted.
There is an iodine protocol which includes Iodoral pills or Lugol’s iodine solution, vitamin C, magnesium, selenium, B3 niacin, B2, sea salt.
It is best to see an iodine-aware practitioner before you jump into these things, because each body is unique and different. You may need lab work prior to treatment. (In the case of Hashimoto’s and elevated antibodies, iodine sometimes worsens the situation.)
Do not jump into this carelessly.
Different people may need different supplements and various amounts.
Zinc and Selenium are also essential minerals for good thyroid function.
Dr. Brownstein suggests 25 mg to 50 mg iodine per day (10 to 20 drops of Lugol’s 2% solution). In pill form, called Iodoral or Advanced Iodine Complete, each pill is 7.5 mg potassium iodide + 5 mg iodine, for a total 12.5 mg dose per pill. So 2 pills would be 25 mg. Lugol’s 2% solution has the same ingredients in the same proportion.
You can read about all this in the highly accessible book,
The Iodine Crisis, by Lynne Farrow. She includes clear information about iodine protocol and many resources to contact.
A national bestseller and more scientifically oriented book is
Dr. David Brownstein’s Iodine – why you need it, why you can’t live without it.
For myself I’ve been consulting a great health coach, Rachel Neumann, who is beyond knowledgeable in all of the above. You see, my thyroid sputtered out recently. Thank Heavens it’s on its way back to normalcy, with the help of the iodine protocol.
Isn’t it fascinating how the earth holds so many ingredients precious to us? Seaweed is rich in iodine. Try some at the sushi bar. I’m glad we have oceans of seaweed, and I hope we can keep those oceans healthy.
Wishing you good health always . . .
Diane Stallings RN does personal healing and/or EFT Tapping sessions by phone or video chat, Distance Biofield Tuning by phone or in-person, Chakra Balancing, and health coaching. She gives you practical ways to lift your wellbeing. Make an appointment here.