Orthomolecular research is focused on preventing and treating disease by determining how much of a certain natural substance the body needs and then determining the best way to provide it. Lugol’s Iodine (LI) is a substance that can be of tremendous benefit to us when we ensure that we have the right amount in our bodies. We can suffer from a wide range of illnesses simply because our bodies are deficient in this miraculous iodine.
Here are some of the benefits of Lugol’s Iodine for the body:
- Essential for proper thyroid health.
- Useful anti-oxidant.
- Efficient anti-pathogen-kills most forms of bacteria, viruses and fungi quickly.
- Effectively works to reverse hypo- and hyperthyroid conditions.
- Has anti-biofilm surfactant properties.
- Acts as an anti-histamine at larger dosages.
- Detoxes cadmium, aluminum, lead, mercury, arsenic and other poisons.
- Detoxes fluorine and bromine.
- Helps to balance the body’s hormone system.
- Essential for all hormone receptor activity and health (not just the thyroid gland).
- Raises metabolism, making it more efficient.
- Essential for proper immune system health.
- Essential immune system component of mucus glands throughout the body.
- Essential for bone health.
- Promotes skin, hair and nail health.
- Promotes healthy digestion.
- Reduces excessive mucus production.
- Helps properly regulate estrogen in the ovaries.
- Decreases insulin needs/helps diabetes.
- Iodine has mucolytic action (clears excess mucus in the lungs, nose etc.).
- Increases energy (increases ATP production).
- Essential for early brain development.
- Lowers cholesterol and reduces arterial plaque build-up.
- Radiation protection.
Please note that many of the above benefits from supplementing Lugol’s Iodine have nothing whatsoever to do with the thyroid gland. Our thyroid gland is not the only part of our body that needs iodine. We should also ask: What other diseases and problems can (and will) arise if there is insufficient iodine/iodide for our brain, stomach, intestines, ears, hormone receptors, breasts, eyes, skin, uterus, prostate, salivary glands, lungs and immune system These are all iodine user/storage sites
Why should we supplement Lugol’s Iodine? Why not just supplement Potassium Iodide(I-) or Nascent Iodine(I3-) instead?
The reason why Lugol’s Iodine is perhaps a better supplement is because it has all three forms of beneficial elemental iodine — Lugol’s Iodine contains molecular Iodine(I2), Iodide(I-) and Tri-iodide (I3-) according to this equilibrium reaction in solution:
I2 + I- I3-
Furthermore, when used on its own, Nascent Iodine (I3-) is not a heavy metal chelator. Lugol’s Iodine is a heavy metal chelator and remover (due to the iodide content), removing mercury, lead, cadmium, aluminum and arsenic from the body’s cells. Similarly, the Iodide form is only absorbed by the thyroid gland, skin and salivary glands, whereas the elemental iodine storage sites in the breasts, prostate and intestines can only absorb the molecular iodine form (I2). Furthermore, many other iodine storage sites need elemental iodine – such as the brain, stomach and salivary glands – and these sites need higher dosages in order to be absorbed in sufficient and proper amounts.
So the reason I use and prefer orthomolecular dosages of Lugol’s Iodine (2 to 8 drops or 12.5mgs to 50 mgs of 5% Lugol’s Iodine per day for maintenance) is because of LI’s huge all-round benefit for the whole body – not just for the benefit of the thyroid gland.
Why do some people have such severe problems – heart palpitations, anxiety, skin problems etc — supplementing even one drop of Lugol’s Iodine?
The cause of the above adverse reactions to Lugol’s Iodine is simply due to a poor processed-food diet that lacks both vital antioxidants and contains excess heavy metals and poisons.
You Need To Replace What Is Missing From Your Food
I recently helped a lady with candida problems in the UK. She also expressed that she was fearful and apprehensive about using Lugol’s Iodine within the protocol because it gave her heart palpitations and anxiety. So I advised her to always supplement Lugol’s Iodine with its companion nutrients every day – consisting of Selenium,Magnesium, Vitamin C, higher dose Niacin, B Vitamins and Zinc. Most of these essential nutrients are deficient in our processed-food diets today.
Only a month and a half later, after including the Lugol’s Iodine protocol with the companion nutrients, this woman sent me an email and she was ecstatic. Not only had her candida greatly improved and abated but her brain fog had disappeared and she had much more energy. She was also overweight and so she was over the moon at having lost 22 lbs over such a short period of time. When she took the companion nutrients with Lugol’s Iodine, she had no further problems or adverse reactions to Lugol’s Iodine supplementation.
How Lugol’s Iodine Went to War (and other places…)
Digging a bit deeper into the historical research, I also found that in the pre-World War II period, medical doctors regularly used what can only be described as huge dosages of Lugol’s Iodine for a host of chronic diseases such as emphysema, bronchitis, asthma and syphilis. Dosages of 2,000mgs of Lugol’s Iodine per day (320 drops of 5% LI per day) were not unusual and seemed to cause minimal side-effects for their patients.
Similarly, in my own experience of helping people who had serious candida issues in the Philippines, Indonesia, Pakistan and Africa, I found out that people from these primitive areas could easily supplement 30 drops or more (>187.5 mgs) of Lugol’s Iodine without problems.
How is this possible when so many people in the West get such adverse reactions from just one or two drops of LI?
The answer, again, is a healthier, more nutrient-dense diet. Most people who live in less developed countries still buy their everyday food fresh and unprocessed from wet markets. Similarly, in the pre-World War II diet, there was much less processed food around, more fresh food, and far less agri-poisons, preservatives, GMO, halides(chlorine, bromine, fluorine) and other poisons in the diet than occurs today. These more healthy, primitive and historic diets also contained sufficient amounts of selenium, niacin, magnesium, Vitamin C, B vitamins and zinc because their food was more nutrient dense. And that’s why people from earlier medical history and from these less developed regions of the world had little or no problems with higher orthomolecular dosages of Lugol’s Iodine.
To give people a better idea why the companion nutrients should always be taken with Lugol’s Iodine supplementation, here are some of the reasons, in brief summary:
* Selenium is required for proper glutathione peroxidase levels in the thyroid gland. If these levels are too low, then hydrogen peroxide waste builds up to dangerous levels within the thyroid cells, which eventually tend to corrupt the host Thyroglubulin protein and changes it into a foreign protein that the immune system regards as “The Enemy”. Hence the anti-bodies attack the thyroid cell, causing nodule formation..
* Selenium, as glutathione, as well as Zinc are also essential for the conversion of T4(thyroxin) to the more active form of T3 (triiodothyronin) within the thyroid gland. This helps to maintain more appropriate levels of T3(the more active thyroid hormone). Zinc is also required to maintain healthy thyroid receptors throughout the body. Zinc also stimulates the immune system.
* Both mercury and fluoride, whenever they are in excess in the body, cause significant damage to both the hypothalamus(in the brain) and the pituitary gland. Iodine is essential to displace and remove excess fluoride from the body and both iodine and selenium are needed to remove mercury. Build up of mercury or fluoride in these glands will cause corrupt mis-regulation of the TRH(Thyroid Releasing Hormone) and TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) which is also bound to adversely affect the production of thyroid hormones in the body.
* Vitamin C is necessary to help clear the NIS (Sodium-Iodide Symporters) of bromine corruption. When bromine is absorbed by the NIS network, iodine absorption is strongly inhibited and impeded. Vitamin C acts to quickly clear bromine from the intestinal and cellular NIS pathways to allow the proper uninhibited absorption of iodine throughout the body.
* Magnesium (as well as tyrosine, an amino acid) are needed to convert the iodide in the blood so it can be stored in the thyroid gland as iodine. Lack of proper daily amounts of magnesium in the body will therefore greatly contribute to low thyroid or hypothyroid conditions. Most people lack proper amounts of magnesium in their diets today.
* Niacin and the B Vitamins. Higher dose niacin is required to stimulate energy production in the body. Niacin acts to lift depression and also helps to thin the blood safely. From recent research it was found that niacin/niacinamide increased immune system strength by a factor of 2000. Supplementing the full range of B vitamins also acts synergistically to increase the beneficial effects of niacin.
* The Sea Salt Loading Protocol may also be needed to more quickly remove excess bromine from the body and from the blood. Bromine tends to inhibit iodine absorption as well as cause many side-effects and symptoms. See References below for more details.
If Selenium is Missing From the Soil, It’s Missing From Your Food
I also completed some demographic research recently and discovered some interesting facts. I found that UK is a selenium deficient area – there is insufficient selenium in the soil. Therefore it follows that there will be insufficient dietary selenium in the grains, vegetables and food crops grown in UK for consumption. I also discovered that the east coast and eastern plains of America are also selenium deficient areas. Selenium deficiency causes serious thyroid problems.
Furthermore, the huge prehistoric glacial basin area around The Great Lakes (extending well into the south) in America is heavily iodine deficient in the soil. That means that any food crop that is grown in these soils will also be iodine and nutrient deficient. That’s why so many people in this glacial region have low thyroid problems – due to lack of iodine and other nutrients in their diets from locally grown food (caused by the heavy mineral leeching effect of the giant glacier on the soil from the prehistoric past).
Important! What to do if You Have Side Effects…
So if you have adverse reactions to supplementing Lugol’s Iodine then I would always advise taking the companion nutrients as well. Taking the Iodine companion nutrients will help you to avoid symptoms like heart palpitations, anxiety, insomnia etc. caused by excessive heavy metal detox from LI use and will also help you to avoid auto-immune thyroiditis (nodule formation) which is caused by a lack of glutathione peroxidase in the body. Selenium is the central metallic atom for glutathione peroxidase – a major anti-oxidant and strong detoxer and protector for both the thyroid and liver — which is why you need selenium in the LI protocol.
This Dose Works For Me
For years, I’ve been taking between 6 to 8 drops of Lugol’s Iodine a day (37.5 mgs to 50 mgs) in split dosages as maintenance and I have never had any side-effects or problems. You can simply take LI with a glass of water or you can add the LI dose to a solution of Ascorbic acid or Ascorbate (Vitamin C). I also take LI drops mixed with Humic Acid granules in water (add a small amount of Humic Acid to the water until it turns golden brown and not black) and then add a tablespoon of ACV – this makes it a strong anti-viral. There are many ways to supplement Lugol’s Iodine.
Please don’t forget to always take all the companion nutrients whenever you supplement orthomolecular dosages of Lugol’s Iodine.
The Iodine Protocol with Companion Nutrients – Dosages
Selenium and Thyroid Function
Soil Selenium Deficiency Map(US/Canada)
Sea Salt for Skin Problems Caused by Bromide Dominance in the Body
About the Author
Bill Thompson entered the Earth Clinic community years ago as one of the walking unwell but has emerged not only wholly well but furthermore as an expert in alternative therapies. In particular, Mr. Thompson has established an eager following for his advice on alkalizing techniques and the treatment of systemic candida-two areas of complementary healthcare he has studied extensively and in successful application to his own health. Bill is the author of Candida: Killing So Sweetly and co-author of pH-Balanced for Life!