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Iodine: Friend Or Foe? My Iodine Research And Log

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#1 borie88

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 09:57 AM

Hey all, this is my story and log. It's long but I hope it can help those that are still struggling even with a diet.

For about a year and a half I have been on what I thought was the "perfect acne diet." I eliminated anything I am allergic to (beans, nuts, fish, chicken, turkey) along with gluten and dairy. The first month after starting my diet was AMAZING. I became clear pretty quickly with only some inflamed acne left over. I thought, "Wow I look great! I should stay on this diet forever." Although my acne was gone for the time being, my body began to change.

A few months after this diet started I began to feel like shit. I had no energy, no motivation, no drive, and severe fatigue. My skin was always dry, I could take my dandruff and make a snow-globe (kidding.) I was MISERABLE. When I went to China last summer, I was exposed to many food allergens and broke out again. I wasn't able to have fun there because I felt and still feel like crap.

After coming home I began to go from doctor to doctor searching for my solution. My mom has a history of hypothyroidism and I had almost all the symptoms except for weight gain. My blood tests showed sub-clinical hypothyroidism and autoimmune thyroid antibodies. I basically have undiagnosed hypo.

I took almost every supplement I could that promised to help - b5, pantethine, vitamin d, hcl, probiotics, etc. While they are beneficial, I still felt like shit.

After thinking for a long time about what I was missing, I finally put two and two together. What plays a critical role in thyroid health? It was IODINE. Iodine is not only necessary for thyroid hormone formation and transport, but it also plays vital roles in other parts of the body, such as the skin and digestive system.

Yes, the element that lots of people here are scared of because it supposedly causes acne. I have been ignoring iodine for over a year and have paid the price for it. Cutting out anything processed and using non-iodized salt, while being allergic to fish did me in.

Why do people get acne when they take iodine? Research shows that iodine is pushed out of the system by competing halogens - chloride, fluoride, and bromide. What elements are all too common in western diets and drinking water? Chloride, fluoride, and bromide. Cl and F are in water, toothpaste and bromide is in bread and pesticides. Well then, where is the I? Iodine's recommended RDA is 150mcg a day. This was found to be enough in order to stop goiter and support the thyroid. When iodine is taken in, it pushes the other halogens out, particularly bromide. Bromide being pushed out of the system causes a toxicity, the side effects of which include ACNE! Iodine does not cause acne itself but pushes toxins out that do. How do we get rid of bromide you ask? SALT. Yes, good old NaCl. The chloride in salt will push bromide out. ***Research on your own time how to do it. It's called salt loading.***This is necessary before people start supplementing with iodine if they are getting acne, brain fog, etc., from it. Bromide can be flushed out of the system enough in a couple days IF all sources of it are cut out.

IODINE ALLERGY only effects 1% of the population. It is likely you do not have one.

Now if we have so many elements competing with iodine, 150mcg is most likely not enough. Dr. Brownstein and other doctors in this field have analyzed Japanese societies which have very low rates of breast cancer, thyroid problems, and live longer than Americans. Why? He found that the Japanese people eat on average ~12 Milligrams (mg) of iodine a day! They eat seaweed and other seafood like its their job. This is way more than our measly 150 micrograms. Brownstein's RDA is 12mg a day.

Research also shows that aside from the thyroid, iodine deficiency is present in PCOS and breast cancer. Brownstein also has a video about iodine here. I highly recommend watching this video even though it is long.

WITH THAT RESEARCH AND THINKING I have decided to start supplementing iodine in order to help my thyroid and skin. With iodine supplementation you must also take Selenium and Vitamin C. These help iodine get into cells. Yesterday I ordered an iodine supplement called Iodoral. Each tablet contains 12.5mg, made up of Potassium Iodide and Iodine. I am supposed to get it by Thursday, so I will document my progress from then. I realize that I did not test myself for iodine deficiency, but I also know for a fact that I have been depriving myself of it for a long time, while having classic hypothyroid symptoms and autoimmune antibodies THAT HAVE BEEN INCREASING. I have many autoimmune conditions that may be related to this problem.

Criticisms, praise, questions are all welcome here. I want everyone to realize they may be forgetting a crucial element in their diets as I have been.

#2 bobbi364

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 10:43 AM

Why supplement it? Just eat foods that have it in it. Cranberries are a great source of iodine. Sunflower seeds for selenium and a whole host of other things for vit. c.

#3 borie88

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:12 AM

I plan on eating foods like that and seaweed once I correct my deficiency. I should have said I only plan on taking this supplement for a couple months. Right now supplementation is necessary for me in order to saturate my thyroid and other areas that need iodine. The thyroid alone is said to contain over *edit 50mg* of iodine. The body can hold 1.5g total. 4oz of cranberries have 400mcg. They don't sell fresh cranberries here anyways. The supplement is more cost-effective right now. Seaweed has bromide in it along with possible toxins from pollution. I want to stay away from that for now as well.

I agree that nutrients are best found in foods, but sometimes it is more feasible to supplement.

Edited by borie88, 29 April 2012 - 02:36 PM.


#4 dejaclairevoyant

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:21 AM

You can't get anywhere near enough iodine from foods. The environment is far too loaded with the bad halogens, and they prevent iodine from being absorbed into the body. The miniscule amounts from food never even come close to being absorbed unless you are living in an ultra pure jungle somewhere drinking or touching only rainwater. You have to detox from the bad halogens first before you can really start getting the benefits of iodine. It takes a lot of work. I did iodine detox for almost 2 years straight. Now I take a few drops a couple times a week to make sure I get some, and I still detox if I take a lot because the environment is always loaded with bromides... it's in the air, a lot of it comes from pollution, furniture (*fire retardants they put on couches) and what not, even if you eat right you are still exposed.

Unfortunately that's the world we live in. Everyone who cares about health needs to eat and follow a lifestyle that allows them to always be detoxing this stuff.

#5 Tunnelvisionary

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:22 AM

I think thyroid health is an important point you bring up, and I'm glad you did. Most people here are concerned with healing their guts. That is definitely a very good thing, but the method of doing that can overlook some of the other factors in health. Eating primarily chicken and vegetables to try to heal the gut lining and avoid your acne triggers overlooks other critical components of your body. Plus, with your body being extremely interconnected, you need to make sure you're eating in a way that is beneficial to as much of your body as possible. Instead of targeting something specific, make sure you're targeting EVERYTHING to make EVERYTHING work better. Thyroid affects digestive health too, but it also makes you more resistant to stress and damage.

I'm sure you've seen how some people on this forum say they become more sensitive once they go on a 'healthier diet'. The explanation that you become more sensitive as you remove crap from your diet is something I don't buy. If a diet isn't building robustness and increasing your ability to handle crap (maybe not immediately, but in the future) then I don't believe that it is being done correctly.

Adding salt (whole foods diets tend to reduce salt intake ALOT) and lots of fruits to my diet helped me tooooonnssss. So make sure you're treating the whole body, as everything works in synergy.

#6 dejaclairevoyant

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:23 AM

I plan on eating foods like that and seaweed once I correct my deficiency. I should have said I only plan on taking this supplement for a couple months. Right now supplementation is necessary for me in order to saturate my thyroid and other areas that need iodine. The thyroid alone is said to contain over 20mg of iodine. 4oz of cranberries have 400mcg. They don't sell fresh cranberries here anyways. The supplement is more cost-effective right now. Seaweed has bromide in it along with possible toxins from pollution. I want to stay away from that for now as well.

I agree that nutrients are best found in foods, but sometimes it is more feasible to supplement.


From what I read, you have to take at least 50mgs for a year or more to get most of it out. I doubt a couple months would do much, but better than nothing I'm sure. Good luck, my detox was brutal. Although I was probably more toxic than most people.

#7 borie88

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:45 AM

Tunnelvisionary: You are right. It is best to target everything, not just select things. I believe that my diet has incorporated everything except iodine. I use nutritiondata.com in order to make sure I get everything over RDA. I use salt in nearly every meal. I will continue my diet along with the iodine. Maybe I will be able to cheat for once though.

Deja: I have read the same things but hopefully I do not have as many bad halogens in my system. Aside from the environmental sources of them, I have been drinking spring water, (hopefully real spring water) cut out fluoride in toothpaste, and bought organic veggies when I can. Have been doing this for over a year although a lack of iodine could make it easier for them to get in. While you were doing your detox did you remove halogen sources and were you exposed to them in high amounts just before?

#8 dejaclairevoyant

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 01:09 PM

Yeah I had removed everything probably for about 6 months before. But I was raised on heavily fluoridated water, fluoridated toothpaste, I was medicated with toxic pharmacuticals all through my teens, I had a crack cocaine addiction (which was probably cut with god knows what) in my early twenties, I was an alcoholic also through age 25 or so, and I ate terribly also up to age 25 AND I was a chain smoker from age 19 to 26.

So yeah, I was about as toxic as a person could be, lol. I wouldn't think most people would have the detox I did.

About the salt, I'm sure you know this but for others... just to be clear, while doing iodine detox you need to "salt push" or "salt load" by drinking the salt water mixture. It's not just the salt in your diet. You need to ingest salt water in a specific way in order to help your kidneys with the detox. So even if you eat a lot of salty meals you need to salt load as well.

Oh and I wanted to add, taking the route of detoxing bromides is NOT the path to take if your only goal is clear skin. During iodine detox I get a LOT of breakouts. I got them for months and months and months and I still have scars from some of them even though this was years ago. Like I said above I realize I was more toxic than most people would be, but I wouldn't want anyone to start this journey and think they are going to have clear skin instantly. After six months to a year of some pretty nasty detox symptoms I began getting clear skin again and enjoying the benefits of an iodine sufficient body. But this was not an easy journey. Aside from the breakouts, symptoms of bromide detox can include depression, cold and flu symptoms, etc. When I started detoxing the fluoride my hair was falling out in chunks and my mouth tasted like bleach or something... it was pretty horrible.

I'm not trying to scare anyone off, just saying that detox can be rough and this is definitely not a path for those seeking instant gratification. That said, NOT detoxing this stuff isn't good either.

And on a more positive note, here are some things I began experiencing when iodine began finally saturating my system:

-glowing skin and eyes
-my mind felt super powered
-sleeping deeper and very vivid dreams
-endless energy at the gym

and the weirdest thing of all... I began getting checked out/hit on a lot. Noticeably more than normal. I'm not sure if it does something to your hormones or pheramones or what, but I still have this happen. On days I take iodine, guys will just come up and talk to me. It rarely happens on days I don't take it. No clue what exactly is happening but it's cool. Not just guys either, it seems people notice me more in general when I've got iodine flowing through my blood. I get a lot of compliments.

It's probably just that I have more energy and feel better so I tend to smile more and look people in the eye.

Edited by dejaclairevoyant, 29 April 2012 - 01:00 PM.


#9 borie88

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 02:26 PM

Great post! Did you take Vitamin C and Selenium with your Iodine?

I have read that if you begin to experience these bromide detox symptoms you should stop taking iodine and only salt push. The chloride in salt kicks out the bromide from your body faster. People have reported that the detox symptoms go away and they are able to resume iodine. It is said that only 5% of patients have detox symptoms. I'm not about to power through the iodine if it starts to make me break out a lot. A little is fine but i will stop for a little if anything crazy happens.

I've been taking a bunch of kelp pills (1-2mg KI) for the past couple days and it has given me a couple small pimples but I feel better in general.

#10 dejaclairevoyant

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 03:35 PM

I take selenium. I don't take C because it's hard to find a pill I'm not intolerant to (most vitamin C is made from corn, and I'm allergic). I also don't worry about it because I eat a mostly raw diet with tons of pineapple and oranges and lemon and other fruits and veggies so I figure I'm getting my C.

And yeah I probably took too much without letting my body catch up with the detox. I did everything backwards as I was learning. I hadn't yet corrected my diet or food intolerances so was breaking out from that then I added ridiculous amounts of iodine on top of it without any breaks.

If one has their diet figured out prior I doubt they'd have anywhere near as hard a time as I did.

#11 FSAS

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 09:25 PM

im curious about this. is any salt acceptable (sea salt/table salt). i've always heard how bad salt is and that americans are getting far far too much salt. surely that means there are health risks to purposely ingesting so much salt? would one not get bloated etc and retain water also?
i kinda wanna try this although again a bit worried about possible negative affects. although i also started oil pulling 2 weeks ago and have noticed nothing as with everything else i do so id not get my hopes up but is an iodine deficiany accuate in a blood test if thats even possible?

#12 Thehoper

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 10:36 PM

Good luck bro. I thought the same thing before and took these supplements that were sea vegetables that had a bunch of iodine in it. After about two weeks of takin em I broke out like crazy couldn't believe it, had to stop . Bummer too because the supplements were giving me so much energy, I could feel the difference. And after I stopped taking them the acne went away. But- could have been from the other ingredients in the supplements, pure iodine may be different. Very interested in seeing what happens for you

#13 borie88

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 05:13 AM

Hoper - Did you not read the other posts? The breakout is a detox reaction. You use salt for a few days to clear it out and restart the iodine. If it was giving you energy, you must need it!

FSAS - Everything in moderation. I don't believe salt is as bad as they say. Real, unrefined sea salt is fine.

#14 SamIman

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 08:04 AM

Currently I'm taking iodide and iodine, as well as boron. This was meant to clean the fluoride out of me (i agree fluoride is bad). I didn't look into any acne connection, I guess I can keep you posted on my acne to see if anything changes.

#15 alternativista

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 08:21 AM

im curious about this. is any salt acceptable (sea salt/table salt). i've always heard how bad salt is and that americans are getting far far too much salt.


That's just one many examples of our medical (and any other) establishment focusing on the wrong things and recommending the wrong solutions. Some people are more sensitive to salt and it elevates their blood pressure, but the main issue with it is the ratio of potassium to salt. Most people don't get enough potassium because they live on substandard meat products and white flour.

#16 dejaclairevoyant

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 09:00 AM

Good luck bro. I thought the same thing before and took these supplements that were sea vegetables that had a bunch of iodine in it. After about two weeks of takin em I broke out like crazy couldn't believe it, had to stop . Bummer too because the supplements were giving me so much energy, I could feel the difference. And after I stopped taking them the acne went away. But- could have been from the other ingredients in the supplements, pure iodine may be different. Very interested in seeing what happens for you


That's the detox, it is to be expected.

About the salt, it's not really very much salt that is needed to help with detox at all.

Edited by dejaclairevoyant, 30 April 2012 - 09:00 AM.


#17 borie88

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 09:27 AM

From http://www.breastcan...g/drshevin.html


Dr. William Shevin presented his* Salt Loading
Protocol at the February '07 Iodine conference:
  • 1/4 teaspoon* salt dissolved in 1/2 cup warm water, then
    followed immediately with 12-16 oz pure water.
  • Repeat in 30-45 minutes if needed. May repeat

again until copious urination begins.

.
  • Observe subjective response (usually within

several hours).

*Unprocessed sea salt is preferred. Be sure to ask your doctor
before implementing this or any medical strategy.

*Iodine Investigation Project participants have found 1/2 teaspoon
salt dissolved in water works faster than the 1/4 teaspoon dosage.


#18 Thehoper

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 11:36 AM

"Detox".. right lol. Ya know how many things on here have been blamed to detox reactions? In all reality acne from "detox" can be just a false theory, and the detox acne may never stop coming until you stop whatever is causing it. I've been through all this for years now and have realized most things that cause "detox" reactions, are just going to cause more acne in the future.

Deja said herself she got some severe cysts or what not that wouldn't go away for months and months, and lefts scars, that's what happened to me lol. I was never one to get cysts, and for the first time I was getting cysts on my left jaw, two which left scarring.

It's a scary path to go down, being hopeful that the "die off" reactions go away.. oh and heres the other thing. There should be absolutely no reason for my body to need to detox haha.. seriously I've been as healthy as a human being can be now for quite some time, when I did that it should have just helped.. seriously though not trying to scare you off because again it was not pure iodine. I read a ton about it all and it seems like iodine really might play a big role in acne, i totally believe in the thyroid being messed up in acne people, I fit a lot of the symptoms myself.

#19 dejaclairevoyant

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 12:00 PM

"Detox".. right lol. Ya know how many things on here have been blamed to detox reactions? In all reality acne from "detox" can be just a false theory, and the detox acne may never stop coming until you stop whatever is causing it.


Well these skin eruptions have been well documented by people studying iodine therapy. Check out the iodine forums on curezone.

There should be absolutely no reason for my body to need to detox haha


If we lived in a perfect world that would be so, but unfortunately the air is polluted, the waters are polluted, and as I said earlier unless you were lucky enough to have been raised in a pristine jungle somewhere all your life, you need to detox.

Whether you want to is a different story. But I guarantee what you were experiencing is detox. I totally don't blame anyone if they can't face going down this road... it's rough.

#20 Thehoper

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 02:48 PM

Ok so yeah they have made a connection to iodine treatment and skin eruptions. Doesn't mean its detox, how long can eruptions keep coming for them to be associated to detox? A week. a month.. a year.. years.. ya know so thats where I get skeptical. Because everything that I have taken that a doctor or someone said "it will get worse before it gets better" usually means it will never get better lol. And what I meant by my body shouldnt needing detox is because ive been on such a healthy lifestyle for years now, when I first started being very healthy I did have several "detox" symptoms, and went through all that, but after having a clean body for so long, you shouldn't have detox symptoms are at least nothing severe, but at the same time what do I know Im not scientist these are just logical thoughts in my head.




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