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Mary Shomon

Thyroid Disorders Linked to Over-the-Counter Iodine Supplements

By March 5, 2012

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Researchers have evaluated an increasing popularity for patients to self-prescribe and treat with over-the-counter iodine supplements, and the potential of negative outcomes for some patients.

In one case, a 63-year old woman suffered from 15 hours of atrial fibrillation, and was found to have a high iodine levels from self-administration of iodine, along with a Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) level of less than .006 . After a week on a low-iodine diet, her heart rhythm returned to normal, and her thyroid normalized.

In another case, a 38-year old woman who was experiencing fatigue had a TSH measured at 3.6, and her Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies (TPOAb) were 1910. She started taking Iodoral iodine/iodide tablets for three months, and when rechecked, her TSH had increased to 94, her thyroid had enlarged -- going from from 30 grams to 50 grams -- and her antibodies had risen to 4670. After stopping Iodoral, the woman went on a low-iodine diet, and took thyroid hormone replacement medication, and her thyroid returned to normal.

In a third case evaluated, a 35-year old woman with Graves' disease was treated with the antithyroid drug propylthiouracil (PTU), as well as the beta blocker atenolol. She started taking over-the-counter iodine for three months, and returned to severe hyperthyroidism. After starting a low-iodine diet and increasing the doses of PTU and atenolol, her thyroid normalized.

According to the researchers, "iodine excess has multiple effects on the thyroid gland, including Jod-Basedow's and Wolff-Chaikoff effects." These iodine-induced thyroid dysfunctions can sometimes be completely reversed, but in some cases they are only partly reversible." The researchers conclude that all patients with thyroid disorders should be counseled on over the counter use of iodine.

The message for patients: While iodine is essential for proper thyroid function, too much can be a trigger for worsening thyroid conditions. Work with an experienced practitioner to evaluate your iodine levels, and don't supplement with iodine unless you know you need it.

More Information

Source: Hoang, T.D. "Thyroid Disorders Associated with Over-the-Counter Iodine Supplements: An Increasing Trend," Abstracts of the American Thyroid Association Annual Meeting, 2011

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Comments
March 6, 2012 at 8:58 am
(1) Miki Cutler says:

I was given Lugol’s liquid Iodine (and I take Levothyroxine) by a naturopath. After two weeks of increasing a drop every four days, by the time I got to the 5th drop, I knew something horrible had happened. Couldn’t hardly swallow, my voice became raspy, my throat felt like i WAS being strangled, and I was extremely fatigued. Stopped it, went back to my endo, and I’m okay now.

March 6, 2012 at 9:40 am
(2) cindy says:

I found out the hard way that iodine, did not agree with me. I had

swollen tounge and mouth. I had my thyroid removed years ago

because of a goiter!

March 6, 2012 at 12:24 pm
(3) Kay Bert says:

I was diagnosed 4 months ago with moderate hyperthyroidism and multinodular goiter and my endo recommended thyroid removal which I did NOT want. I started on 50mg Ioderal daily. After 3 weeks of taking Iodine, I went to a previously planned appointment with an endo surgeon. My goiter and nodules had diminished in size, my thyroid numbers were within normal range. I recommended iodine to other family members. Some have noticed nothing, 2 of them noticed feeling better overall. Who knows? Maybe at my next endo appt, things will have gone haywire and I will regret ever hearing about iodine but so far, it has worked well for me and my family.

March 6, 2012 at 1:02 pm
(4) AB says:

Iodoral changed my life for the better. I began with half a 12.5 mg tab and titrated upwards. I generally now take one and a half per day, sometimes less. Iodine kickstarted my metabolism in a way that years of exercise, low carb and T3 did not. I feel so much better with it.

March 6, 2012 at 2:44 pm
(5) Virginia@supplement says:

How interesting to see how Iodine can help some and hurt others. I take thyroid hormone replacement, but would have to do a great deal more research before adding Iodine.

March 6, 2012 at 6:08 pm
(6) Ann Hayes says:

I have tried five different top quality vitamins/minerals over a three year period In the beginning I feel well, much better than I usually feel, and for a couple if weeks everything’s great. But then I begin to feel overstimulated all the time, my heart often racing. When I quit the vitramins, it quickly goes away. I think it’s the iodine causing it, because I get the same thing if I use grey salt to cook pasta, making the water as salty as the Mediteranean sea. Two or three hours after eating it, again, my heart is racing. It has ti be the iodine, that’s what I think.
.

March 7, 2012 at 4:21 am
(7) Sue says:

Supplementing with iodine requires taking companion supplements to aid the detox process of removing halides (bromide, chloride, fluoride) from the body. Celtic salt or other unrefined salt is also used with iodine. There’s an easy to follow protocol. The article only mentions people using iodine & nothing about about how it was used. Before the baby is thrown out with the bath water, people need to review the procedure for taking iodine.

The Wolff-Chaikoff Effect was poorly designed research & incorrect. Yet somehow, this has set the stage for increased thyroid dysfunction by demonizing iodine. Iodine is needed by every cell & are diets are woefully iodine deficient. The RDA is ridiculously low.

I’ve recently started iodine supplementation after researching it thoroughly.

March 7, 2012 at 1:00 pm
(8) Bella says:

Iodine, on his own, saved my sons life and brain. You need to read Dr. Brownstien’s book on iodine. Taking iodine helps leach the bromides from your body, and yes you will experience some symptoms while the bromides are being leached from your body, but that is a good thing. Your iodine meds will not work well while bromides and flourides dominate your body. Iodine helps get rid of them. To each his own though. Iodine is needed in EVERY cell of your body. Time to do your own research, folks.

March 8, 2012 at 9:28 pm
(9) annie says:

i also take iodoral. my naturopath knows that i take it — so, i meet the criteria of only taking iodine under the supervision of a doctor.

my thyroid is just barely off — accoring to my endocrinologist. so, for the moment, i am not on any thyroid medication like levothyroxine, which i’m totally allergic to anyway [it's the fillers that are the problem].

with the iodoral, what i have found that works for ME the best is 3/4 of one pill a day, and no more than that. i start to feel weird if i go over that dosage. i also take all the vitamins recommended for people who have thyroid disease. and i am on a gluten-free diet.

my tsh has dropped to the point where, if it continues to drop like it’s doing, i will NOT have to take thyroid medication at all.

so, for ME the iodine is working. all of us are different – what works for one person may not necessarily work for someone else. that is important to remember.

blessings to all.

March 9, 2012 at 11:19 am
(10) JP says:

Anyone researching iodine should read the work of Dr. Brownstein and Dr. Abraham (who explains very well why the supposed Wolff-Chaikoff effect is a fallacy).

I, too have done very well with iodine and companion nutrients, but I still need thyroid meds. That’s okay.

Lack of iodine is also related to cancer. Iodine is used by far more than your thyroid, but if you start to supplement, your thyroid may demand it first, which is why some get a high TSH and other results which are usually transient according to those who administer iodine.

March 14, 2012 at 1:57 pm
(11) kali balcerowiak says:

I treated my hashimoto by low iodine diet to the very best result. I became an activist in berlin/germany to promote my experience in 2006. since then I met several people ready for iodine control with equal results of increased health and stabilized thyroid function. I did not even take the highly recommended thyroid hormone substitute… please be aware of iodine overflow in your food!

March 16, 2012 at 11:20 am
(12) Misty says:

My husband and I both take Lugol’s Solution daily, dropped in our coffee. We each take approximately 30 mg each day–and it has done great things (we believe) for our health. I no longer have FBD and my husband says Lugol’s works better than saw palmetto. Read Dr. Brownstein’s book–and EHOW: please stop your iodine bashing. I

August 3, 2012 at 1:36 pm
(13) Cindy says:

I’ve read that you need to take selenium and iodide along with the iodine or you risk having the out-of-balance problems described here. Is anyone taking these other minerals too?

August 27, 2012 at 10:00 am
(14) Jann says:

Very detailed — technical — article about ‘iodine’ AND ‘selenium’ — apparently BOTH are needed in balance.

http://perfecthealthdiet.com/2011/05/iodine-and-hashimotos-thyroiditis-part-i/

[quote]

xcess iodine intake can cause an autoimmune thyroiditis that bears all the characteristics of Hashimoto’s. However, in animal studies this occurs only if selenium is deficient or in excess. Similarly, in animal studies very high iodine intake can exacerbate a pre-existing autoimmune thyroiditis, but only if selenium is deficient or in excess.

With optimal selenium status, thyroid follicles are healthy, goiter is eliminated, and autoimmune markers like Th1/Th2 ratio and CD4+/CD8+ ratio are normalized over a wide range of iodine intake. It seems that optimizing selenium intake provides powerful protection against autoimmune thyroid disease, and provides tolerance of a wide range of iodine intakes.

[/quote]

September 20, 2012 at 1:43 pm
(15) monarch59 says:

I wish people would stop bashing Iodine. I started using Sea Kelp, 150 mcg in 2011 for many uses and I’ve had complete success! I started using it to possibly DESTROY the Thyroid Peroxidase (TPO) anti-bodies. I have had NO bad side effects. I had to start out slowly taking 1 tablet & increaseing by 1/2 a tablet weekly along with Selenium, 200 mcg tablet, daily.

Iodine has improved my health:
Destroyed 1,266 TPO anti-bodies
removed the joint pain in my hands
removed scar tissue
removed surgery scar
removed cysts from fibrocystic breast disease
gave me back a concentration level

I stongly promote Iodine. I’ve had much success using it.
I read a lot of good Testimonies on Lugol’s and Iodoral but haven’t given it a try yet.

I’ve been trying to find Bladderwrack, a seaweed, contains Iodine but haven’t been able to find it.

October 18, 2012 at 10:32 pm
(16) Drewboy says:

I took sea kelp & selenium last May on the advice of a few thyroid books… I felt great the first 2 weeks, then I was exhausted the next half-year. I thought I had read a lot about the thyroid at the time, and none of what I had read mentioned the Wolff-Chaikoff effect and my doctors even SPECIALISTS didn’t tell me about it when I told them what happened. So stupid me, I kept taking the kelp until I finally decided to go supplement free for a while. It took me several months to have a full recovery, so it took over a year from start to finish. So with that in mind, I would warn people to be EXTREMELY CAREFUL in supplementing with iodine, until you know how YOUR BODY is going to react to it.

December 2, 2012 at 2:02 pm
(17) Brynn says:

@ Drewboy
I have heard that sea vegetable iodine receptors – much like human ones – will pick up bromine instead; so while you think you’re getting iodine in the kelp you may be getting toxins instead. I’m no expert, it’s just something I heard Drs Mercola and Brownstein talking about on youtube.

January 15, 2013 at 10:48 pm
(18) Sean says:

In response to Drewboy, the Wolff-Chaikoff effect is temporary and would not last half a year. Whatever issue you had was not the Wolff-Chaikoff effect.

January 20, 2013 at 11:59 am
(19) Orecul says:

Because we all have varying chemical composition, we will react differently and need to strike balance. After 6 years of trying to find this balance for myself, I cannot thank the makers of Iodoral enough. I am more geared towards homeopath remdedies, I shunned what my internist did to me back in 2007. She placed me on Synthroid and it destroyed my life. Being an avid runner and participating in amy races, I gained weight, I delveloped brain fog, and many other defunct side effects. I cannot believe the FDA creates such garbage for the masses but of course, that’s what keeps them in business. From someone who has always lead a healthy lifestyle and will continue, I refuse to be a zombie on medications. I combine and alternate Lugol’s with Iodoral (1 tablet) daily and I am back to myself. It was a long ugly road and I thought my life was being taken away. The power lies in our hands to find balance and not rely on Pharma pu$hers!

February 15, 2013 at 6:00 pm
(20) Grant says:

Maybe you should also post an article about the case studies where Iodine has HELPED. Sure there will be cases where a patient’s doctor gives poor advice or there are negative reactions, but there are thousands of cases where Iodine supplementation has helped. Fibromyalgia, cystic breasts, goiters, etc.

March 11, 2013 at 11:31 am
(21) hank says:

This is all about balance.

Depending what is is going on, a little iodine with iodide could do wonders or push you over.

And it it not just about you. Some time ago, like in the 80s, I read about the goiter problem in Germany. The problem was that no one was getting enough iodine from foods. The soils were deficient, and the rates of goiter increased as the defidiency increase.

So where your food is grown make a difference, not just with iodide (my limited chemistry and biology make me wonder how any free idodine could be in orgainics, unless it is a wield orgainic compound) but also Selenium, manganese, etc. All those things come into play.

And the balance might require some trial and error.

March 11, 2013 at 11:33 am
(22) hank says:

This is all about balance.

Depending what is is going on, a little iodine with iodide could do wonders or push you over.

And it it not just about you. Some time ago, like in the 80s, I read about the goiter problem in Germany. The problem was that no one was getting enough iodine from foods. The soils were deficient in idodine/iodide so the crops couldn’t absorb enough. The rates of goiter increased as the defidiency increased.

So where your food is grown makes a difference, not just with iodide (my limited chemistry and biology make me wonder how any free idodine could be in orgainics, unless it is a wierd orgainic compound) but also Selenium, manganese, etc. All those things come into play.

And the balance might require some trial and error.

March 14, 2013 at 2:05 pm
(23) Jenn says:

I really relate to Orecul…that is what happened to me…6 weeks ago, my dr. put me on 150 mcg Synthroid (which I’ve never been on before) because she thought the 88 mcg of Levothyroxine wasn’t getting my levels up to normal. I am a runner and very fit typically, but by the 2nd week, I started having chest pain, PVCs, and shooting pain down my left arm, and shortness of breath…like even getting out of bed wore me out. WHAT???? I got off of Synthroid after being on it for 2 weeks. Its been 4 weeks since I quit, and I am still experiencing all the cardiac effects, easily winded, chest pain, and hyper-anxiety, in fact getting worse. I’m afraid Synthroid may have caused permanent heart damage. So angry and scared. It seems no regular dr takes thyroid disease seriously. Because of everyone’s comments here, I will be seeking out an naturopath bc I will do anything to get my health back.

March 27, 2013 at 1:54 pm
(24) ram says:

Jenn,

Sorry to hear. Sounds like your doctor jumped the gun a bit in doubling your dose. What the Dr should have done was to go from 88 mcg to 100mcg. Slowly building up the Levo. By coming off it your going from one extreme to another. I would go back to your original dose and build it up after 6 weeks to 100 mcg.

March 29, 2013 at 10:20 am
(25) ElcyIL says:

I tried supplementing with a low dose of Lugol’s, I ended up in an anxiety crisis and had to go on Xanax for a few weeks until my body righted itself.

Iodine can be damaging to people, I wish people would stop blindly touting it’s “benefits” and encouraging supplementation without doctor guidance.

April 17, 2013 at 8:00 pm
(26) brustvergrößerung says:

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The entire look of your web site is wonderful, let alone the
content material!

April 18, 2013 at 8:55 pm
(27) Helen says:

I was diagnosed with a low thyroid two years ago. My naturopath put me on iodine supplements (Iodoral) for 6 months/no soy products/increased exercise. I continued to take my other nutritional supplements. It took 3 months for my thyroid to returned to normal.

May 15, 2013 at 12:02 am
(28) Susan says:

I got iodine from my old naturopath. My thyroid levels have been off and on for 20 yrs. I take it sparingly with water as they are drops. If I do this for a few days I don’t have to use it for months sometimes. This passed week I was tired, dragging, had no concentration and joints hurt. I started it again and already feeling better, even BP is lower.

May 18, 2013 at 12:39 pm
(29) Healing_Ways says:

Instead of ‘Thyroid Disorders Linked to Over-the-Counter Iodine Supplements’, that should say ‘.Thyroid Disorders Linked to use of Over-the-Counter Iodine supplements without adequate research and understanding before use.

I bet one of the biggest mistakes with Iodine supplementation aside from starting on a dosage too high is not taking the companionship vitamins and minerals along with it. Vitamin C, Selenium, Magnesium, unrefined salt, vitamin B2, B3. I would also suggest looking into overall deficiencies, particularly vitamin D3. When Iodine is used responsibly, perhaps it is a big threat to pharmaceutical treatments that make lots of money.

Fact is, if Doctors empowered their patients, they would have very few left and if big Pharma recommended cheap treatments that couldn’t be patented, they’d have nothing left either.

If you want to know how to take Iodine safely and responsibly, take a look at the link under my name.

May 18, 2013 at 8:44 pm
(30) GardenGirl says:

I have been doing research on iodine supplementation, and Healing-Ways is right. You have to take it with the associated vitamins, or you WILL get sick. So many people just hear about it, then go buy some tablets and take them. There is a right and wrong way to do everything, and taking iodine without the companion supplements is wrong. Also, you start with 1 drop a day of 2% Lugol’s iodine — NOT the kind you buy in the drug store first aid department.

With anything new, you have to build up slowly. People read that you need so many mg of iodine a day, and go right out and start taking Iodoral without knowing how to use it properly. Of course they are going to have problems.

I got up to 3 drops a day and started getting headaches, so I went back to 1 drop and now I’m fine. Some people have to start at a drop a week at first. It’s all individual. Iodine has shrunk my goiter and given me a ton more energy — and I have lupus. Or do I? Maybe I just needed iodine.

May 20, 2013 at 7:20 pm
(31) Chan says:

I have been taking iosol iodine which is 1830 mcg per drop and I have been doing 2 drops for the last 2 years and have been fine but just since April I have been feeling a constriction on my throat and feel the same way when I have raw broccoli, kale, collards and all the cruciferous vegetables. I was told that raw cruciferous veges can be goitrogenic.
What is going on?

May 21, 2013 at 2:01 pm
(32) Linda says:

I have been tested for thyroid problems for so many years, and I was always told the numbers were fine by my doctors. It wasn’t until I went to a specialist that I was told I have Graves disease and a goiter with nodules, and yet my thyroid numbers are borderline, so doctors dismiss it. I suffer from all the symtoms, but because my numbers were low, they just ignored the problem. I was always wondering what was wrong with me, I knew it wasn’t normal.. A couple of years ago, I decided to try iodine supplements, and within the first week or so, I felt like I finally had something that worked; my nails grew in strong, beautiful and straight, my hair thickened and didn’t fall out as much, my energy came back, I felt reborn…unfortunately after a relatively short time, I noticed my hair coming out again, my nails thinned and curled, I had absolutely no energy and the depression set in again. I tried upping my dosage, but still nothing worked. I have stopped buying them, but I would rather spend the money to feel good again.

As far as greens go, I just read that kale, broccoli, etc were not good for someone with thyroid disease, I was shocked, I thought they were good for everything..especially kale, seems to be heralded as a super food everywhere.

I am so tired and frustrated of trying to get healthy

June 11, 2013 at 4:25 pm
(33) Pamela says:

I have been on Synthroid for 15 years and have struggled the entire time with weight, low energy, brain fog, memory loss and much more. I foolishly listened to doctors, including specialists, and took the meds as prescribed believing “this is normal” if you have thyroid disease. But no more. When my doctor explained to me that synthroid is given to basically shut your thyroid off since it isn’t working completely, my jaw fell open. What kind of thinking is that? Shouldn’t we ask “WHY isn’t the thyroid working? Not just hand out drugs and say see you in 6 weeks to do more blood work and we will monitor for the rest of your life. BTW- don’t go off it or you will die. I am in the process of trying to find a doctor who will work with me to go a more natural way which I am sure will include iodine. I want my thyroid to work normally so I can feel normal. I am very angry that doctors and pharmaceutical companies only care about their pockets and not how the patients are feeling. As long as they are alive, that’s all that matters because it’s surely not the quality of life.

June 25, 2013 at 11:44 am
(34) Mari says:

I’m a nurse who has been going to my doctor for several yrs because I have a goiter. Unfortunately, I’ve been told that even though my ultrasound showed my thyroid is enlarged since my TSH levels are still within normal the doctor chose to do nothing.
Finally, I had an antibody test that showed I have Hashimoto’s, but my doctor still does nothing. He want’s to wait until my TSH levels are out of normal range.
I have been on a quest looking for something that would help me. I have been taking 150mcg of Potassium iodide for a couple of weeks now. One thing I’ve noticed is I have more energy and it looks like my goiter is shrinking. My body temperature is now 98.4 when previously it had been 97.4 always low.
I think when you’re trying something new it is better to start off slow and remember more is not always better. It takes time for your body to adjust and flooding it with nutrients is has been lacking may be overwhelming to your bodily systems.

June 28, 2013 at 8:56 am
(35) likesiodine says:

Yes, we need vitamins with iodine – but be careful using C at the same time as Iodine. Vitamin C makes iodine powerless – it literally counteracts it. Wait a few hours between supplementing the two. Another instance of needing to research before you do something.

July 13, 2013 at 5:02 pm
(36) Farida says:

I have hypothyroidism and for years the Doctors couldn’t get me on the right dose, i didn’t sweat, I couldn’t lose weight, I didn’t have a period. So I started taking an Iodine drop, 3 drops a day, I stopped taking the meds the Dr. had me on with in 1 week I started sweating, losing weight, and have had a normal cycle every month like clock work. I love the fact it worked for me. I wouldn’t advise anyone to do it the way I did, but to talk to your Dr. about it and be tested to see if you are Iodine deficient first.

August 15, 2013 at 2:40 pm
(37) Alicia says:

Wow! It’s great to read soooo many differing opinions and comments from all of you. In September of 2011, my OBGYN discovered a large mass on my thyroid and referred me to a radiologist who did an ultrasound. He said it was a 3 cm adenoma. He also said sometimes they can go away on their own; however my OBGYN wanted me to see an ENT and get a biopsy, which I did. The ENT said I had hurthle cells, and the only way to determine if the mass was cancerous was to remove half my thyroid. I was surprised to learn that they couldn’t tell immediately during the operation but had to have a pathologist examine the specimen and in a few days report the outcome. If it was cancerous, then I would have to go back for a second surgery to have the rest of my thyroid removed. I did not want to do that, so beforehand I asked that they get a second opinion if the diagnosis was cancer. As it turned out, the original pathologist at UCLA got a second opinion which confirmed it was a follicular variant of papillary carcinoma. Then my surgeon had him send the slides to the head pathologist at Johns Hopkins on the east coast. He disputed the first two diagnoses and said it was completely encapsulated, and the cells although irregular had not turned into cancer. Although I was happy to avoid the second surgery and subsequent nuclear radiation that was initially recommended, I have since done more reading and have wondered if it might have simply gone away if I had waited and changed my life style and taken iodine and other supplements. I am now taking 25 mg. of levothyroxine every day, am having major hair loss, have been losing weight (10 pounds already), feel a bit hyper, and am not sleeping very much. Any comments about this would be welcomed.

August 16, 2013 at 12:08 am
(38) Juanita says:

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August 18, 2013 at 5:36 pm
(39) Edward J says:

Reading all these experiences should tell us one thing.
COMMON SENSE SHOULD ALWAYS PREVAIL!
I know the fact that iodine cannot be patented and would not be profitable to the pharmaceutical profiteers whom largely run the Medical world. Are we getting the common sense feelings here?
I made my own Lugol’s Solution. Took Selenium and L-Tyrosine along with it. Can’t say enough about it. (ALL GOOD)
Should everyone/anyone do this…?
Common sense folks… NO, of course not.
I do feel sorry for those who have a doctor with his/her head up the you-know-what because now what do you do? If you follow their advice, you’re stuck with typical medical gambles. I gambled on my own and won. NOTHING but good came from my iodine experience.
But please… COMMON SENSE FIRST, do the research, go with the gut feeling, talk to a doc if you’re having pre-existing problems.
Anything for health is a gamble, trust doctors? or trust yourself?

August 26, 2013 at 4:31 pm
(40) Raymond says:

How many people get sick from drugs prescribed by lets say specialists who we call doctors?

Authorities have decided to put iodine in salt that we eat everyday. I kind of wonder why supplement would then be bad just because the patient himself decides to take it..

I understand though that you have to verify how much is a normal dose of it in order to not take too much of it..

August 27, 2013 at 1:35 am
(41) Beth says:

I love how this thread is still going.

Last year I was exposed to toxic mold for 8 months in the apartment I was renting. The landlords should have to go through what I went through in hell if there is such a thing. Anyways, even after vacating I was having classic symptoms of mold illness for months – anxiety, breathing issues, weight gain – just to name a few. The last one was what emotionally killed me. I am a fitness fanatic, and my body just wasn’t responding to my intense exercise and diet.

I wrote more, but had to cut this short because of limited characters.

During this whole ordeal, my tummy was constantly bloated. After much research about the connection between cysts and iodine deficiency, I took a risk and went back up to 12.5 mg a week ago. I started to have better energy again. The next day, I went up a half a dose, and eureka… I started smiling for no reason. I even had two doses the next day with no trouble. And then – perfect bowel movements! I was floored. They were a mess for weeks. I went back to a dose and a half for a couple days and that is where I will stay for a little while. I now look at my body and can’t believe what I see – I look almost as fit as before moving into that wretched apartment. My lower tummy is almost flat again. Also, my sleep is finally refreshing – vital if you want to heal from an illness.

I didn’t intend on writing so much, but I hope this helps someone. Please keep in mind that I supplement with selenium, l-tyrosine, and many other nutrients. I don’t drink or do drugs, so that is obviously helping as well. I will continue to take Iodoral indefinitely, but will stop or decrease use if I feel my body needs a break. If you are in tune with your intuition then use it! If I had gone to a regular doctor I would be on ten different meds and might have committed suicide by now. I am angry that I got sick, but so thankful to find something that let’s me live life to the fullest again.

August 29, 2013 at 12:58 pm
(42) Diana says:

I was on 1/2 of a tablet of Iodoral for one month. The first week I felt wonderful…flat stomach, weight loss, increased energy. By the end of the month, I had over a dozen symptoms of being hypothyroid including sleeping all day and hair loss. Never again.

August 29, 2013 at 6:17 pm
(43) Joy says:

You mention “researchers”. Who are these researchers, what are their qualifications and where did they conduct this research? Where are the results of the research published and who funded the research? Where did you get the information about the research?

September 3, 2013 at 5:52 pm
(44) BornWithOut says:

I am a 32yr old female and I was born without a thyroid at all. I have been taking Synthroid since I was about 2 weeks old, or so. For most of my life I was a good weight, until a few years ago. For instance, I am 5’3″ tall and when I met my bf 3 yrs ago I weighed 110… Now it fluctuates from 129-135, depending on the time of the month. I have tried many things to get back but nothing seems to work. I just recently started reading up on Synthroid and thyroid problems in general. I have noticed that I am not the only one having problems… Im really not sure what to say to my doctor because he seems to think my weight is normal but its not just that… Its noticing that my hair is thinning and I feel exhausted all the time, can barely get out of bed in the morning. Im sort of lost on all this. I have always thought that taking the synthroid was just the right thing to do and everything would be ok… I just don’t know what to do… Any ideas or any help???

September 5, 2013 at 12:19 pm
(45) vinoth says:

My wife is suffering from thyroid, we know having thyroid is last 6 to 7 month’s . In thyroid TSH level is more other’s T4 & T3 is normal.
From last 7 month we taking treatment with endocrinologist specialist from starting stage of treatment blood report TSH is 41.18 ulU/ml in that time tablet taking started daily thyronorm 100mcg. After 3 month once we checked blood report TSH in that 0.10 ulU/ml, after that doctor told us take same tablet weekly 6 days. present TSH is normal 1.36 ulU/ml checked in last week.
Last two days back i went to my family doctor he saw our all report and he is telling to take 50mcg per day.
I am married last two year back till now my wife not conceived for that only we went to my family doctor. We both already tested all medical test in that time only we come to know thyroid.

Please help us as soon as possible which doctor is correct how to take treatment.

Thanks in Advance
vinoth Kumar

September 10, 2013 at 8:05 pm
(46) Liam Gallant says:

Is there anyone answering the questions asked on this blog? I am in Baguio City Philippines and my Filipina wife has at least 18 of the symptoms present in a victim of thyroid illness described by Dr Brownstein whom I discovered in researching the Internet. She is exhausted and sleeps long hours, is always cold (96.5 temp), swollen tongue, skin problems, painful periods, irritable disposition (is very sweet person), no energy, acid reflux with some vomiting, terrible stomach pain and cramps, inconsistent bowels from constipated to diarrhea, etc… I am trying to find a source here in Philippines to purchase Iodoral so we can experiment with her a little at a time. We had her tested for thyroid and she tests low but her Dr. was going to prescribe a synthetic drug and Fedy (my wife) will not take it. Can anyone tell me where I can find Iodoral here in the Philippines? The drug companies rule here as they do in the States and it difficult to find natural compounds. Of course I’m relatively new here and don’t know the good sources. I am determined to nurse my beautiful wife back to health. She has been enduring this since her early teens and she is now 30yo. I may have to take her back to the States if I cannot find help here.

September 25, 2013 at 2:40 am
(47) ali says:

I am patient of hyperthyroidism since two years,but the result is zero.Dr recommend me the medicine ,in the first diagnosis the test result was Tsh <0.05 and T4 39.04.
After using the medicine of procorbizole and deltacortril of one month the value was Tsh was still <0.05 and T4 24.1.
Then Dr recommend me to continue the medicine for one month more.And after one month the test result was Tsh 54.23 increases from its normal value 0.25 – 5.0 and T4 decreased <1.00 from its normal value.then Dr recommend me to continue procorbizole and decreased the deltacortril for two months more…
so i am very confused what to do and now i change my Dr and he recommend me neumarcazole for one month.and after one month he again he gave me thyroxyn also.
.now i feel the pain in the front of throat.similarly my left eye is big in size now t he right side is going to effect.
so plz tell me what to do and tell me about the Diet

September 28, 2013 at 12:33 pm
(48) stewey says:

To Ali,

If you’re in the Philippines you can probably just get your local pharmacist to mix up some Lugol’s solution; it’s the same thing as Iodoral but in liquid form.

If you aren’t sure how much to take, you need to know the percentage the solution is medicine (usually 5%, could be 2%) and then look online for some dosage recommendations.

Be sure to start doses low, and use correct supplements.

September 29, 2013 at 2:39 am
(49) email Archive appliance says:

I don’t know whether it’s just me or if everybody else experiencing issues with your website.
It appears as if some of the written text within your posts are
running off the screen. Can someone else please provide feedback and let me know if this is
happening to them as well? This could be a problem with my internet browser because I’ve had
this happen previously. Appreciate it

October 22, 2013 at 11:37 pm
(50) Susan says:

After 30 years of suffering debilitating health problems, I started taking iodine a year ago and it would be difficult to overstate the radical difference it has made in my life. Polycystic breasts, PCOS (including the loss of an ovary from cysts in addition to the entire constellation of symptoms PCOS produces) severe IBS, numerous bouts with pneumonia and other secondary respiratory infections, chronic fatigue for years, widespread eczema, chronic heart arrythmias (PACs — benign but uncomfortable when you have them all the time), all culminating in breast cancer five years ago, resulting in a mastectomy. I could go on — I have been around the block, believe me. Iodine supplementation has improved or eliminated literally ALL of my issues, including the IBS and chronic fatigue, which is like a miracle for me. I hoped to improve my health with iodine, but I could never have dreamed that such a recovery was possible. The difference is so dramatic that it is unmistakable, and all of this began occurring within about four weeks of starting iodine, and still continues. I have my life back, after 30+ years of suffering, and I will never look back. I love Mary Shomon, and during all the years I was convinced I had a thyroid problem, when it never showed in the bloodwork, I have come many, many times to About.com for information. I’m sad to see her discouraging the use of iodine when I know it could help so many women like me. I have my answers, no thanks to any doctors — I found it myself online, and I hope others will find it, too. There may be some for whom iodine is not beneficial, but I believe far more people would benefit, or would feel no difference.

November 1, 2013 at 3:39 pm
(51) Stephy says:

Hello!

I m really wondering about ur doses. Here in germany the daily amount is 200 micrograms for adults per day. HOw come some of you r taking like 34 milligrams ?????????????????????? It seems SOOOO much. And it seems that some of you are taking such high doses over a long period of time.

We r selling those iodine pills here which r meant to be taken if a nuclear-accident happends. And they have like 100 mg iodine/iodide per pill. To load ur thyroid so it cant store “bad iodine” ….

How can some of you take 35 milligramm and more every single day ????

And whats up with this iodide and iodine issue?

I have only found Potassiumiodide here … thats whats usually used in pills to treat or prevent goiter etc. Highest dosage seems to be 500 micrograms to “treat goiter”.

November 13, 2013 at 12:34 pm
(52) Deborah says:

The best informed experts on this are in the paleo community. Look for people like Chris Kresser and Loren Cordain, their books and posts. They are recommend iodine supplements but warn about the dosage being monitored carefully. Take your health into your own hands-but be properly informed!

December 17, 2013 at 3:33 pm
(53) Chris says:

Dr David Brownstein says that the thyroid gland can store 50 mg of iodine just by itself, and that entire body stores 1.5 to 2 grams of iodine in total.

The daily iodine uptake of the thyroid is around ~600 mcg/day, so it would take 90 days to get the thyroid to full capacity. To achieve that the blood serum levels must be high, and that is achieved by taking 50 mg/day.

In the early part of the 20th century it was quite normal for doctors to routinely prescribe 300 to 900 mg/day of iodine with no ill effects.

January 21, 2014 at 10:54 pm
(54) Annabanana says:

My doc said that I was slightly hypothyroid and recommended iodine supplements. I had a bottle of Iosal, so went on the lowest dosage: one drop per day. By day 4 or 5, I got crazy dizzy, lightheaded. That was my last day on the stuff, and that was four days ago. I had heart palpitations, panicky feelings, dizziness, wierd ear-popping noises, and it’s been scary. An herbalist I know said that the iodine has to take time to leave my system. She said that I was probably at the saturation point, and I know that I’d far more be hypothyroid than feel like I do with this stuff! I know that iodine can bless many, but supplementing has only made me really sick. I

January 22, 2014 at 4:28 pm
(55) George says:

Have battled Hashimoto’s for years. A few years ago it became next to impossible to stabilize my levels with thyroid supplementation. I started with Iodoral (50 mg) and selenium, and took tests on my levels using Hakala labs. (Hakala labs is great.) Long story short: I needed to stay at 50 mg for more than a year. The result has been that I no longer need thyroid supplementation. Clearly the Iodoral helped, and I believe that taking 5000 units of vitamin D2 also helped.
I went down to 6 mg of Iodoral and stopped the vitamin D for 6 months and my thyroid problems returned, and so I’m back up to 25 mg of Iodoral and my thyroid numbers are improving.
As noted elsewhere, when you take Iodoral your TSH levels will jump up. You need to measure T4 levels to know what’s your thyroid is doing.

February 1, 2014 at 10:38 am
(56) kjohn says:

taken without selenium, iodine will cause problems. Been there, done that! First attempt at iodine supplementation my TSH rose to 35….needless to say, I stopped it. In my quest to find my perfect balance, I researched some more online and found that selenium works synergistically with iodine and must be taken along with it, especially if you are selenium deficient. Tried it again on 12.5mg of iodine and selenium for 5 months, feel better that I have in 20 years, and my TPO antibodies are within normal range although I have Hashimoto;s. I wouldn’t poo-poo iodine just because someone doesn’t follow the right protocol.

February 13, 2014 at 1:52 pm
(57) MLB says:

My naturopath put me on 50mg of Iodoral (the dose started low and increased to 50mg over several weeks). My thyroid tests were normal but he thought I was iodine deficient. At first I felt great, more energetic, my hair grew like crazy, my eyes weren’t so dry etc. Then things shifted – I developed severe eye pain and facial neuralgia and a killer headache that lasted 2 weeks. He kept telling me it wasn’t the iodine so I kept taking it and then I decided to just get off of it and see what happens. The pain disappeared with a couple days. BUT within a week I started retaining several pounds of water. I tried going back on the iodine, my eyes hurt again, I gradually decreased it this time over the course of a week or two but still retained water. He gave me a different kind of iodine to try which made me feel like I had overdosed on speed or something. I stopped for 3 weeks then tried taking just half a 12mg pill per day, I started packing on more water even while taking the iodine so I stopped completely again and retained even more water. I am still carrying about 5 lbs of water (and I have a tiny frame – normally 113lbs so this is a lot for me). I drink and I don’t eliminate what I take in. I feel fine otherwise, not fatigued, no other subclinical hypothyroid symptoms. I’ve had my thyroid tested – no antibodies to speak of, TSH went way down (it was on the high end of normal when I was on the iodine) but why am I retaining tons of water?? I’m afraid my thyroid and/or pituitary (which regulates water) are damaged now. I think people need to be extremely careful taking this stuff. If you’re going to supplement take small doses and work closely with someone who knows what they’re doing because the idiot I went to obviously didn’t and now I am completely screwed up! I wish I had never done it!!

February 26, 2014 at 11:36 pm
(58) Penny says:

I am a 47 yr. old woman. I have suffered migraine headaches, anxiety and depression all my life. 5 yrs. ago I had a hysterectomy. Two years ago, I started taking synthetic estrogen-testosterone. So far, so good. About a yr. ago I started gaining weight, and no matter what I couldn’t get rid of it. Iwanted to cry this last time I was weighed… I’m now 184 lbs., only 5 ft. 1 in. tall. I have been experiencing fatigue, am cold all the time, and have a lot of joint pain. My hair is thinning badly, and feels terrible. My doctor has ordered blood tests to check for Thyroid disease. I have been doing a lot of research, and think I probably have hypothyroid. I have all the symptoms. Sitting fully clothed and a heavy robe on, right next to a heater. I bought a bottle of Thyro-max Support at GNC tonight. Will take as directed with a selenium tablet in the morning. I’m so sick and tired of feeling sick and tired…… I don’t wanna wait for the doctor!

February 27, 2014 at 8:22 am
(59) sky says:

i don’t understand… you tout dr.david brownstein over and over yet this article –is in complete contrast to his book–iodine why you need it etc.etc..even explains why ones tsh goes up for a while till one levels out to an optimum dosage, perhaps read his book again–as he is the authority–full stop

February 27, 2014 at 11:34 am
(60) Bonnie says:

Taking 150mcg in an iodine supplement is not even similar at all to taking 20mg (20,000 mcg). There is a heart medication out there called Amiodarone, which contains only 2000 mcg iodine — but it is WELL documented that 40% of the patients who take this high iodine product will end up with a severely inflammed thyroid gland, and either hypO or hypER.
This happened to my own mother and aunt — both who had to start taking Amiodarone, and who soon after, began to have full thyroid dysfunction.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11294826
“Amiodarone thyroid disease is primarily related to excess iodine-induced thyroid hormone synthesis in an abnormal thyroid gland (type I AIT) or to amiodarone-related destructive thyroiditis (type II AIT), but mixed forms frequently exist.”
And it doesn’t matter if you are taking those other supplements; iodine goes straight to your thyroid — it’s what your gland uses to make T3 and T4. PTU and Methimazole ATD therapy perform by blocking iodine from reaching the cells of the gland. That’s their function.
Which means, if you are taking iodine WHILE taking ATD, you are simply making sure the ATD meds won’t work.
And about Dr Brownstein — I sincerely hope that he is not telling people that the Wolf Chaikoff effect is a hoax. Emergency Rooms have been using Lugols and SSKI for 100 years as a way to shut down a toxic gland – and they often only use 2-4mg. They also use it before thyroid surgery, to cause a thyroid to fully shut down, to avoid hormone release during heavy thyroid manipulation.

March 8, 2014 at 2:28 pm
(61) Denise says:

I’ll add my two sense I here. Taking high doses of iodine is like playing Russian roulette. You may feel great, but you may also wreak havoc with your body. If you have an underlying thyroid condition not associated with iodine deficiency, you could REALLY do some damage. I speak specifically to those with autoimmune thyroid disease. The problem is, as you can see in many of these posts, the medical community is still in the sand about properly diagnosing thyroid dysfunction, that’s why so many sick people are flocking the internet for help with what they believe is a thyroid problem. The advent of the TSH, which is classified as the “gold standard” for diagnosing thyroid issues, has really removed doctors from look at “symptoms” and if warranted, starting a patient out on small trial doses of thyroid medication to see if the patient’s symptoms start to resolve. Iodine, taken by those with unknown autoimmune thyroid disease can be very scary. I’m one of them, although my doctor was well aware of my hashimotos, but thought it would be a great idea. I nearly had a heart attack and broke out in hives. TREAD VERY CAREFULLY when taking iodine. If anything, start with low doses and slowly move up. This will let you know if you and iodine are contradicted before you end up with a heart arrhythmia or even permanent thyroid issues.

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