by Faith Christensen, ND
Iodine is a mineral utilized within every cell in the body. Iodine is necessary for proper thyroid hormone production and all other hormones. Iodine concentrates in the thyroid, ovaries, thymus, pituitary gland and hypothalamus, skin and adrenal glands. Adequate iodine levels are required for proper immune system functioning and iodine itself acts as an anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic, anti-viral, and anti-cancer properties. In the past, only significant deficiencies such as mental retardation, goiter, increased child and infant mortality, and infertility warranted iodine supplementation. Recent studies indicate that over 90% of the US population is deficient in iodine with pregnant women showing over 600% decline in iodine levels in the last 30 years. According to the World Health Organization 1.5 billion people, about 1/3 the earth’s population, live in areas of iodine deficiency.1
Springs Natural Medicine carries Iodine supplementation and offers phone consultations. Contact Springs Natural Medicine today!
Conditions Treated With Iodine:
Breast Disease and Breast Cancer (see iodine and cancer prevention/tx handout)
Excess Mucous Production
Headaches and Migraine Headaches
Ovarian Disease: Ovarian Cysts, etc.
Parotid Duct Stones
Thyroid Disorders: Hypothyroid, Hyperthyroid, Autoimmune, Thyroid cysts, Thyroid Cancer
Laboratory Measurement of Iodine and Associated Toxic Elements
Urinary Iodine: standard test MD would run but is not as accurate for total iodine levels
Iodine Patch Test: a drop of iodine is placed on skin. If it disappears within a specific time then it indicates a need for iodine;however, skin contains only 20% of total body iodine.
Urinary iodine loading test: Best way to measure iodine deficiency based on amount of iodine utilized by the body after ingesting a 50 mg tablet.
Urinary Bromine and Fluoride excretion: used with urinary iodine loading test to check for these toxic minerals related to low iodine levels and contribute to many of the diseases listed above.
Salivary/Serum Iodine ratio: measures defects with iodine uptake and utilization (NIS and pendrin symporters) Normal is 42 below 20 more investigation to defective symporters is indicated.
Why Are People Deficient In Iodine?
Diets without ocean fish or sea vegetables
Inadequate use of iodized salt including low-salt diets
High consumption of bakery products(bread and pasta) which contain bromine.
Vegan or vegetarian diets.
Drinking chlorinated and fluoridated water especially if contaminated with perchlorate(widespread and increasing).
Mineral deficient vegetables and fruit from mineral deficient soil(many areas naturally deficient).
Dosage of Iodine
12.5 mg needed for thyroid and breast health(daily recommended intake 14x the RDA)
50 mg-100 mg based on lab results.
Best utilized with iodine/iodide combination
Cofactors and Minerals Needed for Iodine Utilization
Riboflavin (B2) 100-200 mg a day
Niacin (B3) 500-1000 mg a day (non flushing will work)
Vitamin C 1000-3000 mg a day
Selenium(100-400 mg a day) and Vitamin E(gamma delta E(not d-alpha): iodine and thyroid hormone production
Unrefined salt: 1-1-5 gm a day(see salt handout)
Signs of Iodine Excess
Ingestion of iodine and/or iodide has been associated with certain complaints. If you experience any of the following or experience any unusual symptoms since starting iodine, stop ingesting iodine and contact your physician:
- acne-like skin lesions in certain areas of your body
- headache in the frontal sinus
- unpleasant brassy taste and/or increased salivation and sneezing