Iodine is most often known to be essential for thyroid hormone production. Without iodine, the thyroid gland cannot make thyroid hormone. Iodine can be found in every single cell of the body and is critical for proper immune system function. It is a natural antiseptic, which has antibacterial, anti-parasitic, and antiviral capabilities.

What causes iodine deficiency? Most Americans are actually deficient in iodine because we do not eat enough ocean fish and sea vegetables. Iodized salt is low quality and man-made, which is not a good source of iodine. Underlying gut issues can also block the ability to absorb iodine and other minerals. We are also constantly exposed to heavy metals and chemicals in our environment, which hinders the use of iodine in the body. Eating a vegan diet and a diet high in bakery products can also cause iodine deficiency.

Iodine is a powerful antioxidant and has anticancer properties because it can induce apoptosis, or the death, of cancer cells. The use of synthetic thyroid hormone in those who have hypothyroid may worsen an iodine-deficient problem. There is a correlation between iodine deficiency and breast cancer. Toxic halides like fluoride and bromide inhibit the uptake of iodine by the cells. Fluoride is in our drinking water supply, toothpaste, and some prescription drugs (antidepressants). Bromide is found in bakery products, sodas, fire-retardants, pesticides, and some prescription productions (inhalers). Chlorine and perchlorate are chemical toxins that also affect healthy iodine metabolism in the body. Chlorine, used as a disinfectant, and perchlorate, used in rocket fuel, are both found abundantly in our water supply.

Some of the signs and symptoms of low thyroid function are brittle nails, cold hands and feet, constipation, depression, dry skin, elevated cholesterol, swelling, fatigue, hair loss, weight gain, poor memory, muscle weakness, infertility, irritability, ADHD, and muscle cramps.

Iodine is a very important mineral for our bodies, but if you have underlying health issues, you need to consult with a healthcare practitioner before supplementation. Check in with your CHI practitioner today to see how iodine can help you!

Yours in Health,

Dr. Calvin