It's About Your Health

This is not a post related to our ministry, it is for those who have asked me to share what I know about natural fertility help and or Iodine supplementation.  I have been researching Iodine now for over 5 years and have witnessed it helping or curing many problems in my life and the lives of my personal friends. Even though I've been actively researching it on and off for a long time I have only begun to scratch the surface of what is out there. I am generally someone who is fascinated by nutrition and the way our bodies can heal themselves when given the right nutrients, but of all the things I've tried personally, Iodine stands out as the one that's shown the most results. I think Iodine supplementation (as well as other trace mineral supplements) can GREATLY impact and improve YOUR health.

(I'm not selling the stuff or receiving any gain from promoting it. All it is is a mineral, no concoction of weird ingredients that nobody knows of and it's not some patented new miracle drug or supplement! It's just iodine. Just as God created it.  I am not a doctor of any kind, but the research I've done comes from doctors and nutritionists and throughout this post you'll find quotes and links to some sources for more reading. I would highly recommend reading this post by Dr. Michael Donaldson which I found after writing all of the below, he does a better job explaining the major rolls iodine plays in the body.)

"There is growing evidence that Americans would have better health and a lower incidence of cancer and fibrocystic disease of the breast if they consumed more iodine. A decrease in iodine intake coupled with an increased consumption of competing halogens, fluoride and bromide, has created an epidemic of iodine deficiency in America." -Doctor Donald Miller, Jr.

Listed below are just some of the many ways Iodine is being used to improve and or cure/heal health conditions and symptoms. Since I have used Iodine for my hormonal issues, and to carry my pregnancies to term, that is what this post is centered around.

* Fibrocystic Breast Disease, breast cancer and related cancers (it actually causes cancer cell death. Cancer is a    result of mutated cells. Iodine is absolutely critical for something called the P53 gene which is known as the "keeper of the    genetic code". Without iodine and selenium it will not function correctly to eliminate abnormal cells from the body such as    cancer.)
* Polycistic Ovarian Syndrome and related cancers
* Uterus fibroids, cysts, endometriosis and related cancers
* Prostate problems and cancer
* Heavy Metal Detoxification (aluminum, mercury..)
* Protection from radiation
* Parkinsons Disease
* MS
* Thyroid problems
* Goiter
* Fibromyalgia
Diabetes, Insulin and blood sugar issues
* Brain Fog, feeling stupid
* Headaches and migraines
* Hormonal imbalance
* Weight gain (many have found iodine to help them get over the common weight loss plateau) 
* Other cancers, including of the breast, colon, lung, ovaries, pancreas, stomach and thyroid.
* Adrenal Fatigue
* Heart Disease
* Cortisol Levels
* High blood pressure
* High cholesterol
* Hypoglycemia
* Hypothyroidism
* Low Body Temperature
* Lump in throat
* Thyroid disease
* Hair loss
* Dry eyes
* Dry Mouth
* Thyroid storm
* Hashimotos 
* Cherry Angiomas
* Bromine Poisoning
* Depression
* Low energy
* Sexual dysfunction
* Infertility and failure to ovulate regularly
* Muscle cramps and joint pain
* Irregular menstruation 
* Bowel problems
* Neck swelling / enlargement
* Hoarse or weak voice
* Carpel Tunnel / tendonitis
* Dry skin and brittle fingernails
* Tingling hands or feet

Iodine deficiency is a world wide epidemic that contributes to countless diseases and their cures. It is not just in poverty stricken countries that we find this, but right at home in the United States and other developed countries as well. The human body is filled with iodine receptors especially in the hormone-producing organs (breast tissue, ovaries, uterus, prostate and thyroid), but it is also necessary for every cell in the body.  We are seeing so much deficiency in iodine because it is a mineral once commonly found in our soils, but has now largely been depleted. It can be found now in only certain areas of the world as well as some seafoods, kelps and some dark green veggies. This is true for many minerals, and so the food we eat does not always give us what it once did. Most of us don’t eat a ton of kelp either, so we really have to supplement to get what we need. We are also deficient because there are common toxic ingredients in our environment, cleaning supplies and food (bromine, fluoride, and chlorine derivatives) that fill our iodine receptors and wreak havoc on our bodies.  It is pretty safe to say that everyone could use some supplementation with many needing drastically high dosages.

"Over 95 percent of my patient population is deficient in iodine. Iodine is crucial for proper thyroid functioning and formation of all glandular tissue, including the breasts, ovaries, prostate, and uterus." -Doctor David Brownstein MD

"Iodine has anti-bacterial, anti-parastic, anti-viral, and anti-cancer properties. Without it, you are at risk for cancer of the breast, prostate, ovaries, thyroid, and uterus." -Doctor Al Sears MD

Iodine is used by naturopathic doctors to treat Goiter and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome as well as other hormonal problems. It was originally added to table salt in 1924 to help reduce the incidents of Goiter that were on the rise throughout the US. It did reduce Goiter all around, but because Iodine is essential for our brains, as a "side effect" the average IQ rose 3.5 points after it’s addition.  The iodization of salt was hailed as the first public health miracle. Even though refined salt can prevent goiter in the vast majority of people, the minuscule amount of iodine found in it falls far short of the amount necessary for promoting optimal thyroid function. And so, we are still left quite deficient. It is absolutely essential for our brains, and often when we are deficient we feel like we have brain fog. I think this is often why new mothers feel in a brain fog (and also we're tired) because our iodine reserves have been depleted for the well-being of the baby. It is SO important to have during pregnancy for both the health of the mother and baby. Insufficient iodine during pregnancy and infancy may impair babies neurological development and set them on a course for hormonal problems immediately and in the future. It is also helpful for milk production and keeps mom healthy while baby uses her iodine stores. When I remember, I add iodine to my children's drinks, since my older girls are no longer breastfed.  There is research that says iodine babies end up being smarter, less hyper active and doing better in school because of how much it does for the brain..etc.

"The mother's body is apparently programmed to put all its iodine reserves into nourishing the child and does not keep sufficient reserves for itself"

But anyway, if you are someone struggling with infertility or any of the above mentioned side effects of iodine deficiency, have your doctor test your iodine levels. Even better, try to locate a doctor in your area that might be aware of this epidemic problem who will know how to test your levels correctly. Maybe you don't have the time or money to get tested, there are common symptoms of iodine deficiency and home tests you can do. In my opinion, we should all be taking iodine just for general well-being. It will serve to support and heal your whole body whether you have a big health problem or not.  I am not trying to suggest this is a cure all or a miracle worker, but God created this stuff with a purpose in the body and I have seen it used as a means to resolve health problems for many.  It is not a substitute for trusting the Lord, sometimes the Lord may be teaching us something through our sickness and we need to rely on Him even when all avenues we try may fail. I thank the Lord for the way He created our bodies intricately and for me, learning all of this has caused me to stand more in awe at our Saviour and His awesome design. 

Why not just do hormone replacement therapy, progesterone pills or creams?  These are very valid options for certain situations, and I would never judge someone for going that route. For me, as much as I wanted to have a baby, it was more important to figure out what was wrong with my body, and WHY I was unable to make it past the first few weeks of pregnancy. I believe our bodies are intricately designed and if I am struggling with poor health hormonally, it will eventually affect other areas of my life, body and health. I like to take a holistic approach at healing. When you take a hormone pill it signals to your body that you have what you need. It does not encourage your body to heal itself and in many cases stops your hormone production even more because your body can tell you are getting it from some other source. This makes it difficult to wean off of hormone replacement drugs, and doesn't actually fix the underlying problem. Iodine encourages your body's hormone production, instead of overriding it. There is also not very much known about the long term side effects of using hormone replacement drugs. The hormones in them are the same found in your birth control pills and when the pill originally was created and tested, there were many failures in their trials as well as ignored evidence of very dangerous side effects. It made it onto shelves anyway and now some 60 years later we are realizing some of the effects with the rise in cancers and so many other diseases and sicknesses. So for me, I was very wary of taking artificial hormones. Although I do think that at times, hopefully not long term and depending on the issue, they may be necessary.

"When you add synthetic thyroid hormone to the body the thyroid could stop the production of its natural hormones, and as a result, the thyroid gland will shut down its own hormone production. The problem is this treatment does NOTHING to address the cause. Instead, the autoimmune disease continues to progress and leads to more and more health problems."

Dosing and the Iodine Protocol: I began taking 3 drops (7.5mg) of iodine daily in a flavored drink (because it has a very mild taste which is easily disguised in juice). That was an extremely low dose, but a good place to start. You can take much much more than that safely.  One of the nutritionists I follow was able to cure herself of thyroid cancer by taking 125-150mg a day along with supporting nutrients. Even though 3 drops (7.5 mg) is a low dose it immediately worked for my problem which I will explain later, as well as helped many of my friends resolve some of their problems. 

(You should know that iodine in many will initiate a detox. Symptoms of the detox could be extreme depending on the level of toxicity in the body. More commonly these symptoms would just be headaches, but it varies depending on the person. I never had detox symptoms.  This does not mean the iodine is bad or isn’t working, it means it IS working.  But this is why it might be good to start with a low dose to see if the detox hits you hard or not. After trying 3 drops for a few weeks, notice if there are any detox symptoms or obvious improvements and decide whether to up the dosage from there. At the bottom of this article is information on helping to detox and quickening the detox process. It is actually good to move up to a higher dose to try to initiate a detox because the more you can detox your body of halogens the better your body will be able to absorb and utilize the iodine.)

"Iodine intake immediately increases the excretion of bromide, fluoride,  and some heavy metals including mercury and lead. Bromide and fluoride are not removed by any other chelator or detoxifying technique."

The leading iodine doctors recommend taking a few supporting nutrients along with the iodine. 
They are: 
Magnesium (200-400mg a day),  
Selenium (200-400mg a day), 
Vitamin C (2,000-5,000mg a day), 
Celtic sea salt (because it supports adrenals, binds to bromide, assists in removing toxins and aids mineral absorption),

It is harder to give an exact amount for the iodine since each person seems to need a different amount depending on age, health issues, weight, and if they are pregnant or nursing. Dosages range from 12.5mgs-300mgs for adults.

If you are taking synthetic hormones and want to begin taking iodine as well you may want to find a good endocrinologist that is knowledgeable about iodine and the iodine protocol because it becomes a more exact science as you try to back off the synthetic hormones your body has been accustomed to. I have read of many people having success weaning themselves off the synthetic hormones and regaining their bodies ability to produce their own hormones. 

My story:
I had suspected that I had hormonal problems for years but didn't begin looking into it seriously until I had several early miscarriages. Miscarriages are super common these days and I know they are caused by lots of different things. At the time I did not have enough money to get properly tested and so I jumped into researching on my own. I read two big books and countless articles, as well as information I found online. I had always charted my cycles and so I had a lot of helpful information about how my body works and years of my own cycles printed out which helped me discover what I believe my problems are.  I began taking more vitamins and eating healthier foods that would just encourage my overall health, focusing on foods and supplements that would supposedly help my hormone production. I didn't really notice any differences.  Eventually, I stumbled on some information on Iodine.

From my self-diagnosis, I suspected that I had low progesterone among other things. 
-Low temperature upon waking (classic sign of iodine deficiency and low progesterone), 
-Always cold, 
-Temperature not staying high after ovulation (when it is supposed to spike at ovulation and remain high until your period starts) (This is also a sign of low progesterone since progesterone is what causes the temperature to remain stable and supports the baby's life for the first several weeks), 
-Chronic migraines, 
-PMS and cramping (requiring medication), etc.. 

After lots of research, I discovered all that I just tried to explain about iodine and began taking those 3 little drops daily. I saw almost immediate results.

Within 3 months of taking Iodine I had hardly any migraines, cramping and PMS were almost gone, temperature remaining stable after ovulation and generally warmer temperatures upon waking. The next time we tried to get pregnant and I was able to carry to term! Praise the Lord for Iodine. It really was amazing. I continued taking iodine and when I started my cycle again after Lily was born it went right back to normal and I ovulate monthly. After my second c section, the doctor informed me that I only have one functioning ovary!!  He says the other one never developed and is just a shriveled little thing.  I am very curious if this is the root of my hormonal issues, but it is amazing that my body even ovulates monthly and that I have had no problem getting pregnant since taking iodine even with only one good ovary. I believe the iodine has helped my one ovary do it’s job. ;) 

This is a section I hope to begin updating with testimonies from my personal friends who have experienced benefits from the iodine protocol.. but of course I have to get their permission first and have it written out. Currently I think there are about 10 babies that were born since this article was published as well as friends who have healed hypothyroidism, infertility, migraines, lost weight, having regular periods for the first time in ages, getting off hormone replacement drugs, solving depression problems and postpartum depression... and more!

*One of my favorite stories is about my friend who struggles with PCOS and her body does not even release an egg without artificial hormones. She had tried to get pregnant for years (I think 6 years), and finally succeeded with a hormone. The second time she tried to get pregnant the hormone wasn’t even working so I told her about Iodine and she began ovulating right away and got pregnant that first month! Immediate results for her!  Two years later she wanted to start taking iodine again to try to handle her PCOS better, not necessarily wanting to get pregnant. But again she immediately got pregnant! 

*Here is a great Iodine testimony from a retired radiologist 
"As an interventional radiologist for 30 years, my job was to read the mammograms and perform the procedures, the breast biopsies and needle aspirations. Some women had multiple cysts and nodules and returned to the department every year for repeat aspirations and biopsy procedures. After their procedure, these women would ask me, "Doctor, what can I do to make these cysts and nodules in my breast go away"? And for 30 years I would throw up my hands and say "We just don't know".

After I retired from radiology and returned to clinical medicine in 2004, I attended medical meetings and there was David Brownstein MD and George Flechas MD addressing the doctor audience about the Iodine project and the health benefits of Iodine supplementation. Iodine is the answer to fibrocystic breast disease. Iodine is the answer for breast cancer prevention. Iodine is the answer I should have been giving to all the women over the years I worked in the hospital X-ray department, but didn't. So I am making up for it now. We routinely test for Iodine level, and give Iodine supplements to every woman in my clinic." -Jeffrey Dach MD

There is just endless information on Iodine out there and the ways in which it is used and needed in the body. I am constantly learning more and could continue on and on.. but I am attempting to keep this fairly concise and simple.

Now, having said all that I have to admit that sometimes I remind myself of Lucy's during her shpeel here, except that I actually do believe in this stuff! :P

Here are some extra helpful links for more information:

This website is one of my favorite for Iodine information. 

In this link the doctor talks about how we are deficient in iodine, but he doesn’t really mention how much that can effect our hormones and fertility. It is a good video though. 

Here the same doctor gives more compelling reasons for why we need iodine supplementation. 

What I take and it seems to be one of the most recommended. 

Magnesium and Selenium Supplements (There are a lot of great brands out there): 

****There is a Dr. David Brownstein who is one of the leading experts on Iodine and I am planning on reading his book soon. Much of the research I have done points back to his studies, but I haven't gotten my hands on his book yet. But the Amazon reviews on Dr. Brownsteins book about Iodine speak for themselves and show more amazing testimonials for why this stuff is needed by everyone!

***If you begin taking Iodine and experience detox symptoms, you can do something called 'salt loading' to quicken the detox to get through it faster. Some people don't experience detox and only feel immediate benefits from the iodine, other people feel like the iodine doesn't do anything for them at all, good or bad. If this is true for you, it may be because your body is so filled with halides that you cannot even begin to absorb the iodine. Salt loading may help with this as well. I encourage you to stick it out and see how iodine may benefit your health in the long run. Most people who have detox symptoms will only have temporary mild symptoms like headaches, increased acne, increased perspiration, possibly some fatigue and irritability. Those who are extremely toxic may have intense detox symptoms like sluggishness, rash, impaired concentration, abnormal pigmentation, cherry angiomas, hair loss, anxiety, metallic taste, runny nose, dream changes, diarrhea or constipation, twitching eyelids, dry mouth or increased salivation, kidney pain, etc.. These are the extreme cases, and would only be temporary. IF you detox in these manners, I would recommend getting a copy of Dr. Brownstein's book and following his protocol to a T.  But again, even though these symptoms may feel extreme, it is actually a good sign of detox.  

  1. How to aid your body in the detox by salt loading:
    1. **Note- You should not need to do this for more than 3 days. If your symptoms persist then you need to consider reducing your dose of iodine. 
    1/2 tsp celtic (or other unrefined) salt in 1/2 cup of warm water 
    Follow the above with a glass of 12oz filtered water.
  2. **Repeat every 30-45 minutes as needed until urination begins.
          Why does this help? Salt (containing chloride) binds to bromide in the blood stream and carries            it out through the kidneys. 

** There is a Facebook group about Iodine supplementation that I became a member of.  Lots of good information on there, moderated by a nutritionist specializing in Iodine therapy. Iodine Group

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