Category Archives: Iodine

Iodine Therapy

31May/17

Podcasts are here! Podbean: Iodine in an Instant

It’s time to bring the iodine message to the next level.   PODCASTS!

Today I produced my first podcast on the topic of iodine.  My goal is to give you iodine information in 5 minutes or less so that you can have the chance to absorb the information.  The first few episodes will be free to everyone.  As I begin to go deeper in teaching, the future podcasts will be by subscription.

I hope you enjoy this introduction.

If you have and topics you would like to have me discuss, please send me a message to:
contact@steppingstonesliving.com

Enjoy!

 

26Jan/17

Iodine and Graves Disease

 

Iodine and Graves Disease is not a topic that I deal with too often.  In many cases hyperthyroidism is only a temporary swing in thyroid hormones due to a Hashimotos condition.  In Hashimotos the thyroid gland may go from hypothyroid to hyperthyroid and back until it finally burns out.

This post is for those who are truly hyperthyroid or have Graves Disease which is an autoimmune thyroid condition where they body attacks its own gland.

There is a common theme that you will find on the internet that iodine and Graves / Hyperthyroidism are incompatible.  This however, is not the case.  Prior to anti-thyroid medications, Lugol’s formula was a common antidote to a thyroid storm. This Merck manual describes the dosing of potassium iodide for the reduction in thyroid hormone creation.  I know that I have read about Lugol’s in this manual as well but have been unable to find a link for you.  The current manual is a subscription service.  If I am able to track down a link I will update this blog with the information.  The following is quoted from an older version.

Iodine: Iodine in pharmacologic doses inhibits the release of T3 and T4 within hours and inhibits the organification of iodine, a transitory effect lasting from a few days to a week, after which inhibition usually ceases. Iodine is used for emergency management of thyroid storm, for hyperthyroid patients undergoing emergency nonthyroid surgery, and (because it also decreases the vascularity of the thyroid) for preoperative preparation of hyperthyroid patients undergoing subtotal thyroidectomy. Iodine generally is not used for routine treatment of hyperthyroidism. The usual dosage is 2 to 3 drops (100 to 150 mg) of a saturated K iodide solution po tid or qid or 0.5 to 1 g Na iodide in 1 L 0.9% saline solution given IV slowly q 12 h.

The naysayers for iodine with hyperthyroidism will point out that iodine is needed for the formation of thyroid hormones.  Very true!  As I have discussed in other blogs, the number in the thyroid hormones (T4 and T3) represents the number of iodine molecules on the hormone.  It is rare to have hyperthyroidism without an autoimmune condition.  This condition is called Graves disease.  When this disease is present, one of the antibodies that may be present is against the TSH receptors (TSH Ab) which causes the body to attack them.  This results in the over production of thyroid hormones.  Iodine in this case will not result in an increase in thyroid hormone creation.

If you are attempting to do the iodine protocol using Lugol’s formula and you have a hyperthyroid condition you will still follow the basic iodine protocol.  I won’t repeat it again here.  You can refer to the blog that I wrote previously about the importance of the components of the protocol.

There are two additional nutrients that should be considered as part of the basic iodine protocol to support the thyroid in a hyperthyroid condition.  These nutrients are described below with their benefits.

L-Carnatine (2,000 – 4,000 mgs / day) – Inhibits T4 / T3 entry into the cell nucleus.

Lithium (300 mgs / 3x per day) – Decreases thyroid hormone synthesis and release and reduces the peripheral deiodination of T4 (conversion of T4 to T3 – the active hormone).

The next question always asked is “How much do I start with?”  Unfortunately there are no absolutes or one size fits all.  We know that 15 mgs is the dosage where we have seen in research that iodolipids are created which assist in managing the proper hormone creation.  In practice however, many of the group members on the Facebook Iodine group have found that 50 mgs or more is where they find the greatest level of health.  It is something that you will need to experiment with and monitor your lab values to find what is appropriate for your condition.

 

16Sep/16

Here Comes the “Pinktober” Celebration

 

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We are just two weeks away from the “Pinktober” event.  For the entire month of October we will be bombarded with pink trinkets and reminders to become aware of breast cancer.  Who isn’t aware of it?  It has claimed a life from most of us – be it family or a friend.  The fact of the matter is that the Susan B Komen program is a scam.  The money they use from what they raise is minuscule and doesn’t fund any meaningful research to stop breast cancer.  Breast cancer is a huge money making industry.  I doubt they want to find a cure.

I won’t bother to go into details about all the issues with this organization but will link the the Truth About Cancer’s post.

The biggest thing that is promoted this time of year is the Mammogram.  However, this method of screening is not effective nor is it safe for determining the risk of breast cancer.  In the NEJM we find a research article that discusses the risk of false positives.

Ten-Year Risk of False Positive Screening Mammograms and Clinical Breast Examinations

If a woman undergoes annual screening beginning at the age of 40, she will have had 60 opportunities for a false positive result by the age of 70, with 30 mammograms and 30 clinical breast examinations. The cumulative lifetime risk of her having a result from a screening test that requires further workup, even though no breast cancer is present, is not known. An estimate of 25 percent has been given for the cumulative risk of a false positive result after 10 mammograms and 10 clinical breast examinations. It is important to determine the cumulative risk of false positive tests, because women are advised to have breast-cancer screening every one to two years over several decades of their lifetimes, and false positive results can provoke anxiety, increase costs, and cause morbidity.

The American Cancer Society has now modified the screening requirements to begin at age 45 with annual checks until 54 at which point it is recommended biennially.

So what are your options if you don’t wish to be smashed and radiated?  There is another test that has been used safely and effectively in Europe and can detect a high risk of cancer up to 10 years prior to it being detected by a mammogram.  This test is called Thermography and measures the vascular changes within the breast.

What else can you do to keep your breasts healthy?

Iodine – If you have been following me for a while you know that I am a strong proponent of supplementing.  It is not just beneficial for the thyroid gland but also the breast.  The breasts are the 2nd largest storage site of iodine in the body.  A deficiency in iodine puts the woman at a higher risk for fibrocystic breast disease [1] as well as breast cancer. [2]

Iodine works as an antioxidant in the breast.[3]  Lipid oxidation can be a contributor to breast disease.  Without adequate levels, the breasts are also subject to excess estrogenic stimulation.  In studies performed on the breast, when iodine deficiency is induced, a fibrocystic condition can be obtained.

Sebatiano Venturi reports on the importance of iodine in the ducts of the breast in his “Is there a role for Iodine in Breast Disease?” 

It is hypothesized that dietary iodine deficiency is associated with the development of mammary pathology and cancer. A review of the literature on this correlation and of the author’s own work on the antioxidant function of iodide in iodide-concentrating extrathyroidal cells is reported. Mammary gland is embryogenetically derived from primitive iodide-concentrating ectoderm, and alveolar and ductular cells of the breast specialize in uptake and secretion of iodine in milk in order to supply offsprings with this important trace-element. Breast and thyroid share an important iodide-concentrating ability and an efficient peroxidase activity, which transfers electrons from iodide to the oxygen of hydrogen peroxide, forming iodoproteins and iodolipids, and so protects the cells from peroxidative damage. The mammary gland has only a temporary ability to concentrate iodides, almost exclusively during pregnancy and lactation, which are considered protective conditions against breast cancer.

If you are breast feeding your need for iodine increases.  Within the breast tissue exists two “iodine pumps” that pull iodine into the cells.  One of the vehicles of transportation is the  NIS or Sodium Iodine Symporter and is how iodine is pulled into the cells.  The other method of transporting iodine into the breast is through Pendrin.  The baby requires iodine for proper neurological and endocrine development and will take what it needs leaving the mother depleted.   How much is enough?  The iodine doctors based their recommendation of 12.5 mgs / day on the Japanese women who experience less breast issues and lower rates of thyroid disease.  This amount is also the amount where the least amount of detoxing may occur from toxic halides that can be passed through to the baby via the breast milk.  There is a protocol that should be followed when supplementing.  The specifics can be found in The Guide to Supplementing.  I wrote this guide to assist those new to supplementing with the basics.  It can be downloaded for free here.  I also run a Facebook support group where additional questions can be asked.  Many women there have experienced the amazing benefits in obtaining optimum breast health through supplementing with iodine.

 

  1. Ghent WR, Eskin BA, Low DA, Hill LP. Iodine replacement in fibrocystic disease of the breast. Can J Surg. 1993 Oct;36(5):453-60.
  2. Lynn C. Hartmann, M.D., Thomas A. Sellers, Ph.D., Marlene H. Frost, Ph.D.,et al Benign Breast Disease and the Risk of Breast Cancer. N Engl J Med 2005; 353:229-237 July 21, 2005 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa044383.
  3. PP Smyth, Role of Iodine in Antioxidant Defense in Thyroid and Breast Disease, Biofactors 2003; 19:3-4.