This archived forum used to be called 'Peatarian' (in reference to Ray Peat).

Iodine Revisited, What Do We Know and Not Know?

I just read through most of the iodine relevant posts here. It seems to me that there are, like with so many other issues, lots of people who seem to indicate that they know more than they probably do. I prefer to think that we are vastly more ignorant than informed, especially when dealing with such a complex system as human physiology. It's hard to find anyone discussing iodine in any detail that doesn't sound like they are selling one extreme viewpoint or the other in a political way, simply steering around or dismissing contradictory evidence. Brownstein, dach, Flechas etc... read like propaganda minimizing and skimming over the negative stuff. Others concentrate only on the negative and insist that they know for sure that a little iodine is enough, or that basically any iodine is harmful. Peats treatment of iodine is cursory and doesn't address some important questions. To me the essence of the problem is this: There is no doubt that some people respond very well to iodine. Positive responses are improved energy, resolution of PCOS, fibroids, better dreams, improved libido, clearer thinking, better sleep, weight loss, hair and nail growth, cessation of skin issues, mood improvement... just the sorts of things that can improve with metabolic/thyroid improvements. BUT, There are also people who have complications. Some of the complications seem transient and some more serious. I've spent enough time reading iodine forums now to see that people drop in frequently reporting everything from swollen thyroid glands to pain, swollen salivary glands, aggravated hypothyroid symptoms and increased breast fibroids. Like almost all boards dealing with a specific issue, problems are generally answered with the same stuff- "you're detoxing/adjusting, take the companion supplements. More salt. Iodine cures that, it doesn't cause it."

I've seen comments here indicating that people think they know what they are talking about with iodine, but given what I've taken in over the past few months, I'd say if you aren't at least a little confused about it, then you need access to more information, or need to ditch an ideology, prejudice or faith-like attachment to being vested in one view, because clearly the controversy is well founded. We can accept Brownstein and Flecha's assertions that they almost never see hypothyroidism or hashimotos worsened or caused by iodine if you just follow their protocol and work with an experienced physician, but I can't accept that on anything but faith in their objectivity and intellectual honesty which I have no reason to possess. Faith in clinicians doesn't go far with me. One thing I've observed in 15 years of chronic illness is that health practicioners often have a very exaggerated view of their ability to help people and often dismiss information or patients that don't fit into what they have already decided is true.

My personal experience is that iodine has undoubtedly improved the quality and quantity of my dreams, decreased brain fog, increased the frequency and quality of morning erections from almost none, given me more energy, improved sleep a lot with less frequent wake ups and ability to fall back asleep after waking up... also sleep (and half sleep) feels more constructive and pleasant, kind of a drug like state, but from which I gain more benefit. It also seems to drop my blood sugar a lot, but without any feelings of what people call hypoglycemia. I experienced brief declines in mood the 2nd, 3rd and 4th time I took it, but those only lasted less than an hour, almost more like minutes. If I was less cautious, I would gush about it and I understand why there is so much enthusiasm from the people for whom it works... "if it works for me, it must be good for everyone". I've taken up to 60mg in a day. A dose of 25 mg seems to be effective and a dose of 6.25 mg (one drop of lugols 5%) doesn't have the same effect. This effect is commonly reported by users- that there is a dose at which it starts to give obvious positive effects for a given person. Other people don't seem to get anything out of it at all, good or bad. I've also tried nascent iodine, but am not yet sure whether it has the same effect.

So, am I risking my health? I take companion supplements and salt, but am unconvinced that protects everyone across the board. It occurs to me that the iodine may have a drug like effect at stimulating the thyroid to produce more hormone, but the effects do seem far reaching and some people seem to be able to taper off to a low dose and continue to do well. I'm taking progesterone and pregnenolone and DHEA experimentally as well, but I don't think they have the same radically positive effects as the iodine so far. And the effects really are remarkable. I don't think anything I've ever done has had this profound of an immediate effect in 15 years of chronic illness. I may slack off and start to experiment with thyroid instead, but that's a bandaid in comparison to iodine if iodine actually ends up fixing the problem instead of just supplementing something my body isn't making. That's a big difference. Ray Peat seems to accept taking supplemental thyroid as just sort of normal. I'm certainly not opposed to the idea if it's the best option, but given a choice I'd rather get my body producing it.

I'd say at this point that I accept as working assumptions that:

-supplementation of iodine can clearly improve the lives of some people a great deal.

-The many people require what would generally be considered radically high doses in order to achieve really positive effects.

-That some people suffer from serious complications from high dose iodine.

-That supplementing high doses of iodine without adequate selenium is dangerous.

-That iodine levels in the population have dropped over the past 30 years or so. (this comes from health surveys conducted I think about 30 years apart)

That leads to a whole lot more questions, which I think I'll refrain from posing here. Given the information that is out there, I am rather disturbed to see dismissiveness from either extreme. I've seen nothing like the level of detail supporting high dose iodine given for the counter argument. Any argument against high dose iodine supplementation needs to address the fact that it is life changing for some people and it also needs to address the argument that selenium is protective and synergistic and will prevent almost all of the problems one might encounter. Ray Peat doesn't attempt to answer those anywhere I've seen, and neither does anyone else. Please speak up if you know otherwise. Iwakura's argument for the protective effect of selenium is here . Some of the information seems compelling, but some of it seems like speculation or just stretching the available information a little thin.

As so often, we are left with radically conflicting view points and the choice of self experimentation. In the end, we often end up having to go with something like intuition to just see what happens. I'd like to hear from anyone that has had negative, positive or neutral experiences with iodine supplementation, or has useful non-dismissive input.

(P.S. I'm new here, but been reading and listening to a lot of Ray Peat lately and feel like he is closer to the roots of disease than anyone else I've run across. That doesn't mean I don't think he is wrong about stuff. Everyone is wrong, it's just a matter of what they are wrong about. Someone asked him who should be trust and he basically said "no one". Amen.)

asked Jan 12, 2015 by Steven e

"am I risking my health?"

Yes.

I tried taking about 2mg of iodine for a couple of months. At first it was clearly stimulating more thyroid hormone release, but eventually gave me severe insomnia and hypothyroid symptoms. For whatever reason even 2mg was too much for me long term.

There is no reason to supplement that high. At most 400mcg. Even then you need extra selenium.

If that doesn't improve metabolism your problem is not iodine, so don't increase it to temporarily force things. It will most likely eventually cause an unpleasant crash.

Your deficiencies that are causing low metabolism could be lots of other things. For me it was zinc, calories, and sun light. Maybe sulfur, which seems to take care of it self by eating enough calories to spare sulfur containing protein.

Eating dense calories is very helpful for me. Well steamed pealed potatoes mashed salted with a couple tablespoons of coconut oil keeps my pulse and temps high better than any supplement I've tried.

Looking back I have way underestimated the power of simply eating 4000 calories of dense calories that digest well and are sufficiently nutritious. My low metabolism was definitely brought on by nothing other than low calorie intake and too little sleep during college. The cure was doing the exact opposite. Not any high tech supplements or techniques, with the exception of zinc, because I was definitely low.

Thanks Brian for the input. The course of events when supplementing iodine seems highly variable. There are certainly people who seem to do fine on large doses for extended periods of time and others who react negatively to small doses... and then everything in between. Did you take selenium? If so, about how much?

I already went through Matt Stone's rest and re-feeding for a while, got my temp up to normal after well over a decade of low temps. I had some other improvements, the kind of stuff you expect with an increased metabolism, but most of the improvements didn't last and left me with fatigue, poor sleep etc... I hear you though, I'm constantly wanting to tell all these hypothyroid people who are living on green juice and bashing sugar to eat some damn food already! For whatever reason, calories aren't enough for me. I even force fed for a while after my appetite slacked off and gained an extra 10 pounds or more that I wouldn't have otherwise. I lost that as soon as I returned to eating to appetite, but am still lugging around more fat than I need to. I never restrict calories though (at least not on purpose). i think I may have wonky endocrine system from very young. I just started taking some desiccated thyroid and may try that for a while with mcg doses of iodine, but the larger doses definitely work better and it's hard not to take them because it makes me feel so much better while nothing else has worked like that. I'm also playing with some supplements and some Peaty diet stuff.

It may just be that different people will always respond differently to iodine dosing making it a gamble. It's hard to tell since the camps seem so divided and people are always arguing their side only and usually with great certainty.

I've applied tincture of iodine to a large mole on my upper leg a few years ago twice a day for a month. It gradually rose out from the underlying skin bed turned black and crusty and eventually fell off. This was a large strange looking mole with all the characteristics that it could turn cancerous. When the scab came off I was left with slighly pink skin that looked brand-new. Now five years later it looks like there was never a sign of it. I think I paid about $1.30 for it at the pharmacy and still have about 1/2 the bottle left. I estimate that I saved my health insurance company 10's of thousands of dollars by experimenting with iodine. This shits is for real for real. Best 75 cents I have ever spent. If it works any where near like what it does externally it would be extremely beneficial.

Steven,

I think I was taking 200mcg Selenium.

What low metabolism symptoms are you experiencing right now?

Whole food starches and coconut oil wasn't enough for me either long term. Zinc and more sunlight have been equally important for restoring my metabolism.

A mcg dose of iodine and selenium sounds reasonable.

When I'm not on iodine, I'm low energy almost all the time. Spurts of energy I do get are short lived. Very low exercise tolerance, shortness of breath and crappy breath holding time, poor sleep (typically wake up in the middle of the night, low libido, no morning erections, brain fog, digestive issues (frequent), and just not feeling well adjusted or up for being engaged with or by people. Weak nails, dry skin on forearms (have had since I was a kid), dry eyes at night and in the past couple of years recurring bouts of uveitis (basically autoimmune inflammation of the eye) for which I'm on steroid eye drops for the past 4 months or more. Temps are still a little wonky on and off. Much of the time since re-feeding I have pretty normal temps and am often running around in a sleevless T-shirt even when it's kind of chilly. But it does fluctuate and stay a little low for periods of time or just change during the day a lot. I also have never gotten my waking temps over about 97.7 I would say that 97.6 is my normal waking temp. I could probably count the times I've seen it 98 or above on one hand. I played with adding some aspirin, extra vitK and a few other things and my temps shot up into the 99's for two days with excessive energy- pacing eating like crazy, but in two days I collapsed again and had even lower morning temps. I don't know what to make of all that. It seems like I have a metabolic road block, and while I've given my body abundant resources and time to heal with absurd amounts of rest, ever time I start to progress, I hit a wall and stall or backslide. I eat nutritious food in general. I'm not interested in real junk food and I've had a garden for most of the past 20 years or more. I don't fit the S.A.D. couch potato profile at all and I have never suffered from any form of extreme orthorexia or calorie restriction, though there have been plenty of times in my life where I did not eat enough, or regularly enough. I think that has contributed to my problems, probably in the context of having a "weak" or stress susceptible physiology. I caught lyme disease a little over 15 years ago and that was game over basically. I don't think the infection, if it's active anymore, is the main problem, but it tipped me over into some kind of major dysfunction. I've taken Zinc on and off, but probably take it only about once a week now. I get sun when it's out, but could expose myself more. I just got the parts to make a 660nm LED light array. I'm on solar power so I can't pump out the watts to run big incandescents unless the sun is out, and then there's no point.

At this point I can't see that there is enough information to say conclusively that mcg doses of iodine are enough for everyone. Though it does seem odd that people have to take high doses of an essentially rare substance, it also doesn't seem outside the realm of possibility that high doses would be required for reasonably rapid replenishment or displacement of unwanted substances from the body. after all, there are a whole lot of chemicals and elements that it could be displacing or aiding in removal from cells. In thinking a lot about what might be happening to us to cause what really looks like an epidemic of endocrine disruption, toxicity has always been high on my list of suspects. According to Artour at Normalbreathing.com the rate of hyperventilation has increased drastically since the 80's, though it was already rising before that. that's about when iodine levels started to decline too according to the health surveys that Brownstein cites. When I started Iodine it increased my breath holding time overnight from a very poor 5 to 8 seconds with discomfort. That effect, like all iodine effects as far as I can tell, could be due to thyroid increase. But, I don't think it's safe to assume that since iodine causes a rise in thyroid hormone levels, that it's good for the thyroid gland. I'm really on the fence on this issue. There is information pulling strongly in both directions. I think supplementing thyroid with smallish doses of iodine, or maybe interspersed with occasional larger doses might be a more prudent approach to the whole thing. I have to admit though that the experimenter in me sort of wants to dose up on the stuff and see what happens!


Those are pretty strong symptoms. How long has it been since you upped your calories? If you have underlying deficiencies I would think it would take at least a year or two for your metabolism at a higher calorie intake to more fully heal.

My hunch on these things is that there are other major mineral deficiencies going on.

I only mentioned zinc, because I noticed that when I ate around a pound of beef per day that there were clear signs of zinc related activity increasing throughout my body. I also wondered if it was sulfur related because beef is also one of the highest sulfur containing foods and sulfur is one of the top minerals of the body.

What has your beef and egg consumption been like throughout the previous years? Mine had been pretty low along with sulfur containing vegetables and calories in general so taking in more has seemed to be restoring levels of zinc and sulfur to better levels.

I could probably speed things up by supplementing both zinc and sulfur, but I don't mind a slower healing route by just eating more eggs, beef, and calories. I can't eat much without inhibiting my metabolism probably only 2 eggs and 8 oz beef per day, but over time I think in combination with high calories it will do the job.

I don't mean to suggest that you also have these deficiencies, I'm just thinking out loud for you.

I like this discussion at selfhacked.com on the various causes of low T3. It's the most comprehensive viewpoint I've found so far.

http://selfhacked.com/2014/11/28/low-thyroid-hormones-low-t3-syndrome/

I don't necessarily agree with his ideas of treatment, but I think he shows low T3 can have many causes and iodine is not a likely major one.

Also, I think most people's low thyroid and sex hormone production is due to estrogen dominance rather than an issue with the thyroid itself, such as a large iodine deficiency.

Estrogen dominance is a tricky hole to dig yourself out of. Most things that increase testosterone will also increase its conversion to estrogen when you are already in an estrogen dominant state. I would say the most simple route with the fewest supplements would be to eat a high calorie whole food starch diet (potatoes, rice) with moderate amounts of beef, eggs, and a little dairy, while doing some strength training of large muscle groups to encourage testosterone production.

If you aren't in good enough health for weight lifting then you can try a few supplements that have had good results over at raypeatforum.com.

1 drop of Progest E + 5 mg DHEA three times a day.

1 400mg of Vitamin E (Sun-E or Unique E)

This should help lower estrogen and prolactin while increasing testosterone. Obviously, some strength training and being on your feet more will help as well as long as you keep your calories high.

I did the full on re-feeding about two years ago I think, or coming up on two years anyway. I have a pretty good sense for what generally spikes my temps if anything is going to, but it doesn't always work and it's just not always what I want to eat, which I put a lot of stake in.

I've been trying to up my protein intake some just that seemed like a common recommendation of Ray Peats. I was shooting for 80 to 100 grams a day, but I often don't make it to 80. I have chickens, fully free range and very little grain, so I eat tons of eggs of excellent quality most of the year. Other meats are usually raised by friends or hunted, some beef. Lately I've been taking progesterone, but only for about two weeks. Also pregnenolone about 50 to 70 mg day and about 5 mg DHEA per day. I haven't done those for long though, only 2 weeks or less. Plenty of vitamin E in the progest-E I think. I took a sort of loading dose of that, 3 drops 5 times a day for 10 days to allegedly prevent estrogen dominance. Now I do about three to 6 drops a day (not that you can actually measure a drop of it anyway). I also now have breast tissue, more on one side and a slightly painful lump in that side as well. Maybe all signs of high estrogen/low thyroid. Pre-refeeding I was very lean, now I've got about 30 pounds of fat that I don't need to store, but I'm fairly stable fat wise, and have been for more than a year regardless of diet, though I do fluctuate with water retention these past months. I have not been able to do any kind of real exercise for a while, so no strength training,but it's on the agenda as soon as I'm up for it. The past few days I've been able to work so I've been doing that because I have so much to catch up on... and it's so fun to get off my ass and get shit done! I eat pretty starch heavy diet with quite a bit of saturated fat, but have been experimenting with higher sugar intake lately, again ala Peat, which is going okay so far. But I never eat anything that I really don't want to eat, and I can only do so much sugar. I think higher protein is helping me want to eat more sugars.

I kind of doubt that correcting iodine deficiency is the only thing responsible for the sometimes dramatic effects of iodine, but who knows. Maybe it does bump off a lot of toxic stuff increasing gland and binding site efficiency. Maybe it just stimulates the thyroid by raising TSH.

I quit iodine two days ago and immediately lost my good sleep, again waking up at 3:00 am as usual. I've switched to desiccated thyroid, NutriMeds Bovine. I really noticed the last couple of days how much clearer my head is. I feel so much more present and sharp. I saw a friend and he was like "I'll tell you my phone number if you can remember it" and I was like, yeah, actually I can remember it! and I did, without even trying hard. My creativity and ability to use logic is much increased too. I had really been feeling pretty dumb and uninspired, which is very unlike me. Energy has remained pretty good, but I expect to crash if the thyroid doesn't take over and do the same thing the iodine is doing. I think observing similarities or differences might be very telling for diagnostic purposes.

I did the full on re-feeding about two years ago I think, or coming up on two years anyway. I have a pretty good sense for what generally spikes my temps if anything is going to, but it doesn't always work and it's just not always what I want to eat, which I put a lot of stake in.

I've been trying to up my protein intake some just that seemed like a common recommendation of Ray Peats. I was shooting for 80 to 100 grams a day, but I often don't make it to 80. I have chickens, fully free range and very little grain, so I eat tons of eggs of excellent quality most of the year. Other meats are usually raised by friends or hunted, some beef. Lately I've been taking progesterone, but only for about two weeks. Also pregnenolone about 50 to 70 mg day and about 5 mg DHEA per day. I haven't done those for long though, only 2 weeks or less. Plenty of vitamin E in the progest-E I think. I took a sort of loading dose of that, 3 drops 5 times a day for 10 days to allegedly prevent estrogen dominance. Now I do about three to 6 drops a day (not that you can actually measure a drop of it anyway). I also now have breast tissue, more on one side and a slightly painful lump in that side as well. Maybe all signs of high estrogen/low thyroid. Pre-refeeding I was very lean, now I've got about 30 pounds of fat that I don't need to store, but I'm fairly stable fat wise, and have been for more than a year regardless of diet, though I do fluctuate with water retention these past months. I have not been able to do any kind of real exercise for a while, so no strength training,but it's on the agenda as soon as I'm up for it. The past few days I've been able to work so I've been doing that because I have so much to catch up on... and it's so fun to get off my ass and get shit done! I eat pretty starch heavy diet with quite a bit of saturated fat, but have been experimenting with higher sugar intake lately, again ala Peat, which is going okay so far. But I never eat anything that I really don't want to eat, and I can only do so much sugar. I think higher protein is helping me want to eat more sugars.

I kind of doubt that correcting iodine deficiency is the only thing responsible for the sometimes dramatic effects of iodine, but who knows. Maybe it does bump off a lot of toxic stuff increasing gland and binding site efficiency. Maybe it just stimulates the thyroid somehow.

I quit iodine two days ago and immediately lost my good sleep, again waking up at 3:00 am as usual. I've switched to desiccated thyroid, NutriMeds Bovine. I really noticed the last couple of days how much clearer my head is. I feel so much more present and sharp. I saw a friend and he was like "I'll tell you my phone number if you can remember it" and I was like, yeah, actually I can remember it! and I did, without even trying hard. My creativity and ability to use logic is much increased too. I had really been feeling pretty dumb and uninspired, which is very unlike me. Energy has remained pretty good, but I expect to crash if the thyroid doesn't take over and do the same thing the iodine is doing. I think observing similarities or differences might be very telling for diagnostic purposes.

So, this is interesting. I went to get an eye exam for glasses today and my eye doctor checked my eye pressure because I'm taking these steroid drops for the last 4 months or so, which can cause gluacoma. My pressures had been really good so far, but today both were much elevated to 28 in both eyes. I tried to get him to explain what goes wrong physically in glaucoma and it has something to do with the lack of movement or draining of fluid in the eye. Of course first he had to tell me it was genetic, which was priceless. His body language and tone and everything were basically, "you're helpless, it's GENETIC, there's nothing you can do!" I wish I could have video taped him. I was very amused. Of course I'm thinking, this sudden elevation is related to something else I'm doing and my eyes feel funny today,not painful, just not right. Anyway, I googled >Ray Peat Glaucoma< when I got home and found this thing on elevated TSH and hypothyroidism causing bulging eyes and thickening of fluids and there is mention of this basic process of thickened mucous secretions happening in various parts of the body, including in the eyes in glaucoma.

So that may be my first real negative side effect from the Iodine. Hard to say for sure, but I will be chilling on it just in case. I also have had oddly protruding eye balls for most of my adult life. I always read that is seen in hyperthyroidism, which never made sense to me, since I'm clearly not and have never been. They seem to me to have improved some over the past couple of years.

And I'm referring to the fact that Iodine often causes extremely high increases of TSH for a while.

"In eastern Europe, the cabbage and turnip staple diets were major causes of cretinism and chronic goiter and myxedema. Myxedema is the name for one type of hypothyroidism that develops in adults, in which mucousy material forms in the tissues, makes the tongue thicken, the skin gets coarse and inelastic — but variations of myxedema can cause a lot of strange diseases that are put down to genetic causes more often than hypothyroidism, but you can cure them, in sometimes a week or two, with the right dose of thyroid.

For example, certain types of mitral valve prolapses are just from an accumulation of a mucous-like material in the valve, making it thick and inefficient. Glaucoma in low thyroid involves a swelling and overproduction and increased thickness of the fluids in the eyeball. Some types of Graves’ disease, which most doctors think of as hyperthyroidism — but hypothyroidism, which causes the pituitary to become overactive — hypothyroidism very predictably tends to cause bulging eyes, because the thyroid stimulating hormone from the pituitary causes a mucousy material to form in the area behind the eyeball, causing a protrusion of the eyeball.

The mucousy materials that are overproduced can also cause blood vessel inefficiency and rigidity, and contributes to things like varicose veins. When this material gets in the joints, it causes cartilage deformities. The old textbooks used to show teenagers with deformed joints that caused the same deviation of the bones — at the elbow joint especially, and the knee joint especially, with knock knees for example — but in old people you see the fingers deviating to one side, because the cartilage is getting deformed.
The right balance of thyroid and the youth associated hormones — progesterone and pregnenolone, and to some extent, DHEA — will rebalance the production of these mucous-like molecules — the glycoproteins and mucopolysaccharides, they’re called — and in just a week or two, you can often correct the deformity in a permanent way, so that the joint functions without pain or distortion.

All of the chronic diseases, to the extent that they involve this false adaptation, in which the thyroid tries to put you into a sort of hibernation state — all of the chronic diseases tend to benefit from the right supplement of these youth associated hormones. And the history of medical thyroid treatment is necessary before a person can understand what the doctor is doing with the tests. Typically, a doctor will diagnose normal thyroid function on the basis of a test of the thyroxine in the blood, and sometimes backs that up with a normal range TSH, or thyroid stimulating hormone.

The TSH usually is somewhere in the range between .5 and 6 units, and a person will be called normal when it’s anywhere in that range. But when it’s above 1 unit, in other words when it’s just anywhere above the lowest normal range, the TSH is already causing excess production of the mucopolysaccharides that tend to load up the various tissues.

Ray Peat: Interview by Gary Null

The resetting of body temperature to 37C is fully described by Steve Richfield on his webpage http://www.fixlowbodytemp.com/papers/LowTemp.htm
I reset my temperature in April 2014 from an average of 36C to my new average of 36.9C using one long hot shower. The method and explanations are really interesting, I fully recommend his approach. Since my reset I have also used a small amount of Nascent Iodine, plenty of Real Salt TM, plenty of vitamin C from food and carbonated water. The Buteyko breath control pause suggests that you have a quite severe hyperventilation problem. Your unstable temps could be the result of poor adrenal function. The body temp reset deals with the hypothalamus primarily which is the master gland in the hypothalamus/pituitary/thyroid/adrenal axis feedback loop system. IMO Nascent Iodine is superior to Lugol's or any other iodine formulation which contains potassium iodide. Nascent Iodine is potassium free.

The Steve Richfield site looks really interesting, thanks. I have nascent iodine, but not sure I've ever taken it up to 25 mg. I hear reports both ways on effectiveness. My control pause sucks, but I haven't been able to improve it with breathing exercises yet. Trying to just breath less doesn't work and using a breathing device like the Frolov seemed to make me worse and cause a small crisis for a couple days. There is something wrong metabolically that is holding me back. I'm about ready to try the breathing device, or some light bag breathing again now that I'm feeling a little better. Artour Rhamikov talks about something called CO2 resistance, that happens to some people which prevents them from progressing, but he doesn't explain the mechanism. I have a feeling he doesn't know what it is. It's become clear that CO2 is a major issue for me, given my history and short breath holding time. Like I said, Iodine improved it, but I still haven't been over 15 sec, and that's exceptional. I'm usually still only about 10 to 12 seconds.

Hi Steven e
"There is something wrong metabolically that is holding me back."
Have you considered ridding yourself of most of the harmful bio-film located in the intestines and also freeing up your lymph system. The other possibility is that you have vaccine damage if of course you have had any vaccines. Experts on these ideas are Patrick Jordan and Dr. Rebecca Carley.
www vaccinefraud.com and drcarley.com . If you open these websites it can have an effect of opening a can of worms, reality is cruel. Another possible solution would be to find out if you are harbouring parasites and yeasts. All of the above can effect you metabolically. Some people are also carbon dioxide sensitive and don't retain enough in the bloodstream and lungs. If iodine is overburdening the liver to detox then the biofilm and lymph stasis can only make it worse. Addressing the biofilm first followed by freeing of the lymph should you need it is the correct sequence.The liver sounds to me to be not functioning optimally. Flukes can also affect the liver enormously. Gruesome stuff I know.

"Have you considered ridding yourself of most of the harmful bio-film located in the intestines "

Yes, to the point of buying bromelain and Nattokinase, taking them on and off and researching other biofilm busters. It turns out the iodine is a very powerful biofilm breaking agent, but I have no idea if an adequate concentration ever makes it into the digestive tract where needed. My gut is definitely a major contributor to my problems. I took antibiotics for Lyme for 2.5 years, most of the time taking two at a time, but I think my gut was already hammered even before I started that.

I've also spent considerable time researching fecal microbial transplants and would have already done it if I could find an acceptable donor. I've found that if you ask people to undergo a bunch of blood tests, answer questions about their sexual history and then shit in a tupperware for you, most of them will find excuses not to call you back! Imagine that. And I was all set to make them a little "I Gave Poop" badge. Their loss. The ones who have been really game all had some issue that was a deal killer. It's very hard to find extremely healthy people. The only thing that ever did anything for my digestion, no more bloating, reduced frequency etc... was the strict GAPS intro diet. I don't doubt it can work for some people who are strong enough to survive it, but it's a rather crude starve your self to starve the bugs approach that I wouldn't recommend to anyone. There was major collateral damage to my metabolic rate and body temp, major ensuing food neurosis, lost the will to live for a short time, etc... As soon as I added any fiber back, I just reverted to my usual irritable and unhappy digestion. I'm still really interested in trying FMT, but I thought I would combine some preparations, including biofilm degraders and probably tetracycline in preparation. So, Endotoxin? I've probably got plenty and it's on the list to deal with that when I can figure it out. I still have some hope that if I can get other things working well that it will eventually sort itself out, or that I may at least begin to respond better to some more basic interventions.

As far as the liver goes otherwise, I don't really know how to proceed. There is so much random liver cleanse and support info out there it's hard to know what to put any stock in. I did think about doing a liver flush with the whole olive oil, grapefruit juice and magnesium sulfate thing, not because I believe all the stuff that's out there about it, but just because many people report that they feel much better afterwards, and thats really what it's all about.

I recently did a bunch of parasite killing stuff for a few days in a row. I didn't pass anything visible and it was a little too hard on my system at the time. I have skinned, eaten and otherwise handled a lot of wild animals, so who knows what I may have contracted over the years. My guess is that it's not a major issue, but I will probably still do multiple parasite cleanses just to be sure. I just want to be on more stable ground first. All of that kind of stuff can be at least somewhat stress inducing.

And yes, I got vaccines when I was a kid, now 47.

Thanks for the links.

If I read him correctly, according to Patrick Jordan lyme's is a biological weapon in vaccines. A colon cleanse which I have performed is 1 tablespoon of psyllium husk powder mixed with half a teaspoon of activated charcoal mixed with half a teaspoon of slippery elm powder. Add water and stir into a paste and drink once daily well before breakfast. The psyllium adds a gel like bulk, the charcoal absorbs toxins and the slippery elm speeds the transit time. I took it daily for 2.5 months, 5 days/week, Saturdays and Sundays off. However it will also reduce absorption of nutrients so that continual usage is harmful. I lost 6lbs of weight from my abdomen using this regime. Freeing lymph can be accomplished after the gut cleanse. I used a combination of Nascent Iodine TM, pineapple, selected inverted Yoga postures and rebounding on a mini trampoline. A high body temperature also helps.

6 Answers

Here are the Peat references on iodine:

The Myth of Iodine Deficiency - Interview with Dr. Ray Peat

Is iodine supplementation safe and, if not, is there a safe amount of supplemental iodine?

Dr. Peat: “A dosage of 150 mcg (micrograms, not milligrams, e.g. ug not mg) is a safe amount of iodine. My current newsletter has some references describing the effect of even moderate iodine excess (even below a milligram per day) on the thyroid. An iodine deficiency can cause hypothyroidism (rare now), but so can an excess. Most goiters now are from estrogen-like effects, but they used to be from iodine deficiency. Chronic excess iodine tends to cause thyroiditis, regardless of the gland's size.
The amounts used by Abraham and Flechas are much larger than this – very toxic doses, enough to cause severe thyroid problems. “

Is the Iodine Test Kit (from Dr. Abraham) valid and does it reveal thyroid deficiency?

“Guy Abraham and his followers are iodine cultists; some of them claim that an iodine deficiency can be shown by the quick disappearance of a spot of iodine painted on the skin. Iodine is converted to colorless iodide by reductants, including vitamin C, glutathione, and thiosulphate.

The skin test of iodine deficiency is just completely brainless. Iodine is converted to colorless iodide by reductants, including vitamin C, glutathione, and thiosulphate. My current newsletter has some references describing the effect of even moderate iodine excess (even below a milligram per day) on the thyroid. An iodine deficiency can cause hypothyroidism, but so can an excess.

The Iodine Test Kit is just a way to sell more of (G. Abraham’s) iodine overdose pills. Those, malic acid, and gold are products of Optimox/Abraham. The test is completely irrational. It implies that the body should be saturated with iodine.

Is there a rational test for iodine overdose/deficiency?

Dr. Peat: “It could be done, but it isn't considered to have any health significance, since goiter is the only generally recognized effect of a deficiency. Hypothyroidism is strongly associated with breast disease, including cancer. John Myers probably started the talk about iodine receptors, which has led people to confuse oxidative damage with a physiological effect. As a general principle, it's good to figure that everything they say about iodine is false. Hypothyroid people get cancer, but iodine deficiency is an unusual cause of hypothyroidism, except in a few places, like the mountains of Mexico and China, and the Andes. John Myers seems to be the one that started the idea of an iodine receptor, thinking about the ability of sulfhydryl compounds (such as cysteine or glutathione) to reduce molecular iodine to iodide, but there's really no particular meaning to the idea of an iodine receptor. John Myers wasn't quite as flaky as the current crop of iodine crazies, but he didn't have any clear ideas, either. High iodine intake can suppress TSH, and since high TSH is pro-inflammatory, the iodine can have some protective anti-inflammatory actions, but in the long run, the thyroid suppression becomes a problem.”

Iodine toxicity References
Re the urinary iodine test, it’s one of the big cults going around lately, telling people they should be saturated with iodine. Iodine reacts easily with toxic PUFA (omega-3 and -6 oils) to make antithyroid molecules.

Science 1985 Oct 18;230(4723):325-7
Induction of autoimmune thyroiditis in chickens by dietary iodine.
Bagchi N, Brown TR, Urdanivia E, Sundick RS.
Clinical studies have suggested that excess dietary iodine promotes autoimmune thyroiditis; however, the lack of a suitable animal model has hampered investigation of the phenomenon. In this study, different amounts of potassium iodide were added to the diets of chicken strains known to be genetically susceptible to autoimmune thyroiditis. Administration of iodine during the first 10 weeks of life increased the incidence of the disease, as determined by histology and the measurement of autoantibodies to triiodothyronine, thyroxine, and thyroglobulin. Further support for the relation between iodine and
autoimmune thyroiditis was provided by an experiment in which iodine-deficient regimens decreased the incidence of thyroid autoantibodies in a highly susceptible strain. These results suggest that excessive consumption of iodine in the United States may be responsible for the increased incidence of autoimmune thyroiditis.

Endocrinology. 2008 Jan;149(1):424-33. Epub 2007 Sep 20.
Oxidative stress in the thyroid gland: from harmlessness to hazard depending on the iodine content.
Poncin S, Gérard AC, Boucquey M, Senou M, Calderon PB, Knoops B, Lengelé B, Many
MC, Colin IM.
Unité de Morphologie Expérimentale (MOEX), Université catholique de Louvain,
UCL-5251, B-1200 Brussels, Belgium.
In basal conditions, thyroid epithelial cells produce moderate amounts of reactive oxygen species (ROS) that are physiologically required for thyroid hormone synthesis. They are not necessarily toxic because they are continuously detoxified either in the process of hormone synthesis or by endogenous antioxidant systems. Using a rat model of goiter formation and iodine-induced involution, we found that compared with control thyroids, the oxidative stress, assessed by the detection of 4-hydroxynonenal, was strongly enhanced both in hyperplastic and involuting glands. The level of antioxidant defenses (glutathione peroxidases and peroxiredoxins) was also up-regulated in both groups, although somewhat less in the latter. Of note, increased oxidative stress came along with an inflammatory reaction, but only in involuting glands, suggesting that although antioxidant systems can adequately buffer a heavy load of ROS in goiter, it is not necessarily the case in involuting glands. The effects of 15-deoxy-Delta(12,14)-prostaglandin J2 (15dPGJ2), an endogenous ligand of peroxisome proliferated-activated receptor gamma (PPARgamma) with antiinflammatory properties, were then investigated in involuting glands. This drug strongly reduced both 4-hydroxynonenal staining and the inflammatory reaction, indicating that it can block iodine-induced cytotoxicity. When experiments were carried out with the PPARgamma antagonist, bisphenol A diglycidyl ether, 15dPGJ2-induced effects remained unchanged, suggesting that these effects were not mediated by PPARgamma. In conclusion, thyroid epithelial cells are well adapted to endogenously produced ROS in basal and goitrous conditions. In iodine-induced goiter involution, the increased oxidative stress is accompanied by inflammation that can be blocked by 15dPGJ2 through PPARgamma-independent protective effects.

Hokkaido Igaku Zasshi 1994 May;69(3):614-26
[Screening for thyroid dysfunction in adults residing in Hokkaido Japan: in
relation to urinary iodide concentration and thyroid autoantibodies]
[Article in Japanese]
Konno N, Iizuka N, Kawasaki K, Taguchi H, Miura K, Taguchi S, Murakami S, Hagiwara K, Noda Y, Ukawa S.
Department of Internal Medicine, Hokkaido Central Hospital for Social Health Insurance, Sapporo, Japan.
The prevalence of thyroid dysfunction and its relation to thyroid autoantibodies (TAA) and urinary iodide concentration (UI) was studied in apparently healthy adults in Sapporo (n = 4110) (Sapporo group), and in five coastal areas of Hokkaido (n = 1061) (coastal group) which produce iodine-rich seaweed (kelp). The frequency of above normal urinary iodine (high UI) in the morning urinary samples of coastal group was 10.8%, significantly higher than that of Sapporo group (6.4%) (p < 0.001). Frequency of positive TAA in both groups were similar. In Sapporo group TAA was positive in 6.4% of males and 13.8% of females with an age-related increase. The overall prevalence of hyperthyroidism (TSH < 0.15 mU/L) in coastal group (0.6%) was similar to that in Sapporo group (1.1%), while that of hypothyroidism (TSH > 5.0 mU/L) in coastal group (3.8%) was significantly higher than that in Sapporo group (1.3%) (P < 0.001). The frequency of high UI correlated significantly with that of hypothyroidism with negative TAA (r = 0.829, P < 0.05), but not with positive TAA, or with that of hyperthyroidism. Hypothyroidism was more prevalent in TAA negative subjects with high UI than with normal UI. Moreover, serum TSH and thyroglobulin levels were higher and free T4 level was lower in former than in latter group. These results indicate that 1) the prevalence of TAA negative hypothyroidism in iodine sufficient areas may be associated with the amount of iodine ingested, 2) this hypothyroidism is more prevalent and marked in subjects consuming further excess amounts of iodine, and 3) excessive intake of iodine should be considered an etiology of hypothyroidism in addition to chronic thyroiditis in these areas.

Clin Endocrinol (Oxf) 1989 Oct;31(4):453-65
Thyroid autoimmunity in endemic goitre caused by excessive iodine intake.
Boyages SC, Bloot AM, Maberly GF, Eastman CJ, Li M, Qian QD, Liu DR, van der Gaag RD, Drexhage HA.
Department of Medicine, Westmead Hospital, Sydney, Australia.
The pathophysiology of endemic goitre caused by excessive iodine intake is not well defined. By interacting with the immune system, iodine excess may trigger the development of autoimmune thyroid disease such as lymphocytic Hashimoto's thyroiditis (LT). In an attempt to examine this further, we compared the presence of thyroid autoantibodies in 29 goitrous children, from an iodine excess area, and in 26 healthy children, from an iodine sufficient area, of north central China. Serum was tested for antimicrosomal (MAb), anti-thyroglobulin (TgAb), second colloid antigen antibodies (CA2-Ab) and TSH
binding inhibitory immunoglobulins (TBII). Affinity chromatographically purified IgG was tested for thyroid growth-stimulating activity (TGI) by two different methods: a sensitive cytochemical bioassay (CBA) using guinea-pig thyroid explants and a mitotic arrest assay (MAA) employing a continuous rat thyroid cell line (FRTL-5). We found no increased prevalence of LT in patients with endemic iodine goitre. The levels of MAb, TgAb and CA2-Ab did not differ significantly between the two groups of children. Further, TBII were not present in either group. Thyroid growth-stimulating immunoglobulins (TGI) were the major autoantibodies found in children with goitres caused by iodine excess. In the CBA, 12 of 20 (60%) goitrous children and 0 of 12 (0% P less than 0.05) healthy children were positive for TGI. Similar results were found in the MAA, and a good correlation between results of the CBA and MAA was found (P = 0.003). Maximal TGI activity in dose-response CBA showed a good relation with clinical goitre size (r = 0.63; P less than 0.05) indicating a possible pathophysiological role for these antibodies. We conclude that endemic iodine goitre is not associated with Hashimoto's lymphocytic thyroiditis. Nevertheless,
autoimmune growth factors such as TGI may play a primary role in the pathogenesis of thyroid growth in this condition.

Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am 1987 Jun;16(2):327-42
Environmental factors affecting autoimmune thyroid disease.
Safran M, Paul TL, Roti E, Braverman LE.
Department of Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Worcester.
A number of environmental factors affect the incidence and progression of autoimmune thyroid disease. Exposure to excess iodine, certain drugs, infectious agents and pollutants, and stress have all been implicated.

Acta Endocrinol (Copenh) 1978 Aug;88(4):703-12
A case of Hashimoto's thyroiditis with thyroid immunological abnormality manifested after habitual ingestion of seaweed.
Okamura K, Inoue K, Omae T.
An interesting case of iodide induced goitre with immunological abnormalities is described. The patient who was sensitive to synthetic penicillin had previously been treated for exudative pleuritis, congestive heart failure and acute renal failure. Following recovery, he began to ingest large amounts of seaweed after which he developed goitrous hypothyroidism. It was of interest that the serum level of gamma-globulin increased, and subsequently the antithyroid microsomal antibody became strongly positive, suggesting that thyroidal autoimmune processes had been precipitated. Biopsy of the thyroid gland revealed chronic thyroiditis, with evidence suggesting extreme stimulation by TSH. Hight thyroidal uptake of 131I, positive perchlorate discharge test and biochemical analysis of the thyroidal soluble protein showed severe impairment of hormone synthesis following continuous accumulation of excess iodide. While there is evidence suggesting that increased iodide may be an important factor in the initiation of Hashimoto's thyroiditis, this may result from the marked increased sensitivity of Hashimoto's gland to the effects of iodine. Thus an occult lesion could be unmasked in this manner. The mechanism by which iodide mediates this effect is not clear.

Presse Med 2002 Oct 26;31(35):1670-5
[Hypothyroidism related to excess iodine]
[Article in French]
Wemeau JL.
Clinique endocrinologique Marc Linquette CHRU de Lille USNA, 59037 Lille. jl-wemeau@chru-lille.fr
WOLFF-CHAIKOFF'S EFFECT: The thyroid gland has a capacity to reduce thyroid hormone production in the presence of excess iodine by reducing the organification of the iodine. This Wolff-Chaikoff effect is observed after 48 hours and protects the organism from excessive synthesis of the thyroid hormones. This effect is usually temporary and within a few days thyroid hormone synthesis returns to normal through the so-called 'escape' phenomenon. However in a few normal individuals and in some susceptible patients, the escape does not occur. THE CONTEXT OF OCCURRENCE: Iodine-induced hypothyroidism is observed in fetuses, newborn, adults and in the elderly. It is observed in individuals without underlying overt thyroid disorder, and especially in patients with autoimmune thyroiditis or those previously treated for thyroid diseases (Graves' disease, subacute or pospartum thyroiditis, iatrogenic thyroid dysfunction...). FROM A CLINICAL AND PROGRESSIVE POINT OF VIEW: The hormone deficiency is of obvious clinical expression, or sometimes discreet and revealed by hormone exploration. It is usually temporary, regressing with a few days or weeks after iodine withdrawal. Nevertheless, some patients require transient hormone replacement therapy.

Thyroid 2001 May;11(5):427-36
Iodine and thyroid autoimmune disease in animal models.
Ruwhof C, Drexhage HA.
Department of Immunology, Erasmus University, Rotterdam.
Thyroid autoimmune diseases are complex, polygenic afflictions the penetrance of which is heavily dependent on various environmental influences. In their pathogenesis, an afferent stage (enhanced autoantigen presentation), a central stage (excessive expansion and maturation of autoreactive T and B cells), and an efferent stage (effects of autoreactive T cells and B cells on their targets) can be discerned. At each stage, a plethora of inborn, endogenous or exogenous factors is able to elicit the abnormalities characteristic of that stage, thus opening the gateway to thyroid autoimmunity. Iodine is an important exogenous modulating factor of the process. In general, iodine deficiency attenuates, while iodine excess accelerates autoimmune thyroiditis in autoimmune prone individuals. In nonautoimmune prone individuals, the effects of iodine are different. Here iodine deficiency precipitates a mild (physiological) form of thyroid autoimmune reactivity. Iodine excess stimulates thymus development. Iodine probably exerts these effects via interference in the various stages of the autoimmune process. In the afferent and efferent stage, iodine-induced alterations in thyrocyte metabolism and even necrosis most likely play a role.
By contrast, in the central phase, iodine has direct effects on thymus development, the development and function of various immune cells (T cells, B cells macrophages and dendritic cells) and the antigenicity of thyroglobulin.

Clin Immunol Immunopathol 1996 Dec;81(3):287-92
Iodine-induced autoimmune thyroiditis in NOD-H-2h4 mice.
Rasooly L, Burek CL, Rose NR.
Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, School of Hygiene and Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA.
Excess iodine ingestion has been implicated in induction and exacerbation of autoimmune thyroiditis in human populations and animal models. We studied the time course and sex-related differences in iodine-induced autoimmune thyroiditis in NOD-H-2h4 mice. This strain, derived from a cross of NOD with B10.A(4R), spontaneously develops autoimmune thyroiditis but not diabetes. NOD-H-2h4 mice were given either plain water or water with 0.05% iodine for 8 weeks. Approximately 54% of female and 70% of male iodine-treated mice developed thyroid lesions, whereas only 1 of 20 control animals had thyroiditis at this
time. Levels of serum thyroxin (T4) were similar in the treatment and control groups. Thyroglobulin-specific antibodies were present in the iodine-treated group after 8 weeks of treatment but antibodies to thyroid peroxidase were not apparent in the serum of any of the animals. Levels of thyroglobulin antibodies
increased throughout the 8-week iodine ingestion period; however, no correlation was seen between the levels of total thyroglobulin antibodies and the degree of thyroid infiltration at the time of autopsy. The thyroglobulin antibodies consisted primarily of IgG2a, IgG2b, and IgM antibodies with no detectable IgA,
IgG1, or IgG3 thyroglobulin-specific antibodies. The presence of IgG2b thyroglobulin-specific antibodies correlated well with the presence of thyroid lesions.

Verh Dtsch Ges Pathol 1996;80:297-301
[Spontaneous Hashimoto-like thyroiditis in cats]
[Article in German]
Schumm-Draeger PM, Langer F, Caspar G, Rippegather K, Herrmann G, Fortmeyer HP, Usadel KH, Hubner K.
Medizinische Klinik I, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universitat, Frankfurt/M.
A breeding line of domestic cats spontaneously developing symptoms of hypothyroidism between the 40th and 60th day of life (fur changes, loss of appetite, growth retardation), elevated levels of antibodies against microsomal structures and thyroglobulin, and lymphocytic thyroid infiltration has been recently established at our facility. Aim of our studies was to examine the effect of high iodine ingestion or prophylactic thyroid hormone therapy on functional and morphological characteristics of this Hashimoto-like thyroiditis in cat. From birth to day 80 of life cats were treated with iodine (n = 9; 0.1 mg/l) or thyroxin (n = 13; 2.0 micrograms/ kg/d) respectively. Untreated animals served as controls (n = 12). Cat-serum was tested for thyroid function (TT3, TT4). After 8 weeks the thyroid tissue was submitted to routine histological processing (H&E) and the inflammatory activity was scored. Additionally immunohistological staining was performed for MIB-1, IgG, IgM and MHCII expression. Both untreated hypothyroid (UHC) as well as iodine-treated (IC) cats revealed a significantly higher degree of thyroid inflammation and higher levels of IgM as the thyroxin-substituted animals (TC). Epithelial proliferation decreased significantly in the IC and TC groups as compared to the untreated controls. No significant differences regarding IgG production and HLAII expression were detectable. Early thyroid hormone therapy significantly
decreases both incidence and activity of autoimmune thyroiditis in cats as measured by inflammatory infiltration, IgM production and epithelial proliferation. Animals with excess iodide intake, however, show an aggravation of the autoimmune inflammatory activity.

Autoimmunity 1995;20(3):201-6
Excess iodine induces the expression of thyroid solid cell nests in lymphocytic thyroiditis-prone BB/W rats.
Zhu YP, Bilous M, Boyages SC.
Department of Clinical Endocrinology, Westmead Hospital, Sydney, Australia. Previous epidemiological studies have suggested that lymphocytic thyroiditis and/or an increased iodine intake may be risk factors for the development of thyroid cancer. We previously reported that excess iodine accelerated the development of thyroid lymphocytic infiltration (LI) in the autoimmune BB/W rat model. We also found that excess iodine increased thyroid cell proliferation in a disordered manner. The present study was designed to further explore these observations and to address the question as to whether excess iodine under certain conditions predisposes the thyroid gland to neoplasia. To test this hypothesis, the lymphocytic thyroiditis-prone BB/W rat was exposed to excess iodine in drinking water. Ten BB/W rats at 4 weeks of age were given iodine water (NaI 0.05%) for 10 weeks, whilst another 10 BB/W rats were given tap water and served as controls. Eighteen normal Wistar rats were also divided into excess iodine and control groups, served as a comparison to the BB/W rats. We found that an excess iodine intake accelerated the development of LI in the BB/W rat. Severe LI was usually accompanied by prominent thyroid cell proliferation, evident as numerous microfollicles and cell masses, not forming normal thyroid follicles. Numerous lymphocytes and plasma cells often encroached on these areas of increased cellular proliferation. The surprising feature, and a possible indicator of activated thyroid cell proliferation, was the high incidence of thyroid solid cell nest-like lesions (SCN) in the iodine treated BB/W rats.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
-------------**

answered Feb 6, 2015 by visionofstrength

Well, the studies referenced are widely known, and far less scary than Peat's hint at iodine induced 'degenerative changes' in an earlier interview. Abraham addressed the association between increased iodine intake and thyroid lesions as well as thyroiditis. Abraham argues that increased thyroid peroxydase activity leads to high concentrations of hydrogen peroxide, which subsequently causes damage to thyroid cells by ROS. A high iodide concentration hower seems to prevent the damage done by oxygen species. That might be why some people experience less side effects when they increase their dosage.

Newer research also highlights the importance of selenium when supplementing with high doses of iodine. High dose iodine in fact appears to improve thyroiditis when there is sufficient selenium.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17828501?dopt=AbstractPlus
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20517655?dopt=AbstractPlus
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21035537?dopt=AbstractPlus

However, I can see where the controversy stems from. Iodine supplementation is definitely something you want to do right. But I think Ray Peat generally overstates the dangers of iodine supplementation. Newer researchs appears to vindicate Abraham. In my opinion experimentation with iodine is definitely warranted, especially for those who didn't get the expected results with an orthodox Peatarian approach.

Thanks visions for the info!! Highly appreciated.

Still, not very detailed refutations.

Agree 100% with Marko about the selenium though.

There are studies that show how a daily supplementation of selenomethionine greatly reduced autoimmune thyroiditis. (They're cited on Jeffrey Dach's webpage).

Btw, I also experienced the sensation of "this is too good to be true. Where's the catch?"

The claims that Abraham wants to make money with iodine are absurd. He has promoted a non-patentable, basic substance that can be found and bought at every pharmacy or chemical supplier around the world. Elemental Iodine + Potassium Iodide + Water. The plain old Lugol solution (more than 100 years old). Plus it solves a wide range of problems.

Agree that the test might be useless though. That is a very different thing.

I cite the "Discussion" section of one of the papers you mentioned :

The selenium concentration in feedstuff is 0.1 µg/L.
In this study, a group of 6000 µg/L iodine+0.3 mg/L se-
lenium (group V) was set up and selenium (0.3 mg/L)
was utilized to suppress the damage caused by 6000 µg/L
iodine. The results revealed that there was no significant
difference in the immunotoxicity between interventional
group (group V) and control group (group I),
indicating
that adequate selenium has a favorable interventional
effect on excessive iodine intake.

A ratio of iodine/selenium as 6mg/0.3mg (20 times) appears to be safe... for rats.

It is commonly believed that in human orthoiodosupplementation (as per Brownstein, Flechas, etc.) one has to take around 200-400 mcg selenomethionine for up to 50mg of Iodine.

That is a ratio of 125 times more iodine than selenium. However they've been using it clinically for many years and patients with success. The common belief (forums, mail lists, informal doctor statements, etc. hence not proved) is that once you have enough selenomethionine (between 200-600mcg) you can take as much iodine as you want. It's not a direct relationship.

Food for thought. It needs further research.

I know next to nothing about iodine, but I find it really off-putting to see Peat dismissing people with terms like "cultists" and "crazies".

For all you people that Iodine has worked for you : Marko, steven, sbs ...

Do you have an history of fluorinated drug use ? Ie. Paxil, Prozac, etc.
http://www.slweb.org/ftrcfluorinatedpharm.html

I do.

I mean, more than a few months treatment. Just curious about it.

Just one takeaway here I think is important: Iodine combines with toxic PUFAs to make anti-thyroid molecules.

In the context of a population that has an epidemic of PUFA contamination and is selenium deficient you could see why Peat would consider proponents of high-dose iodine to be both dangerous and crazy.

The iodine test is especially reckless, since it leads to even greater iodine consumption when it gives false results.

That said, context is everything. If you somehow know that you have low PUFAs, and are not selenium deficient, then iodine may not be dangerous for you.

The problem is, how would you know this? PUFAs are everywhere and take a long time to cycle out, and selenium is a micronutrient that may or may not be improved with supplementation, especially if you are hypothyroid and wasting minerals.

Peat (I think safely) recommends liver, oysters, shellfish and squid to provide balanced, digestible amounts of iodine and selenium.

Yes, I know that this is what Peat believes, but in reality the opposite appears to be the case - Iodolactones inhibit thyroid and breast cancer cell growth, and prevent goiter:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20825298
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20363723

PUFA then doesn't appear to be problem with regards to iodine supplementation. If there isn't good evidence that iodolocatones are toxic to the thyroid - and I haven't seen any - I'd say that iodine could be considered the only substance that not only prevents the toxicity of PUFA by peroxidation, but also makes it do something positive.


@Makrosky:
I didn't use any of those drugs, but I took fluoride tablets when I was a young kid, upon recommendation of my dentist.

Marko,

I too stopped iodine because I thought it was too good to be true and feared unknown long-term side-effects.

Anyway, I once thought to do a blood every 6 weeks for tsh,ft3,ft4,antiTPO,antiTgbA, and selenium. That costs around 90 euros (around 100 US$) to see if something gets out of whack. Have you thought about that ? Like restart supplementing iodine protocol and checking quite closely the thyroid values to foresee any problem ?

I hate the conspiranoia stuff but I too as a kid got fluoride tablets IN THE SCHOOL. All kids in class got fluorinated on a weekly basis for I can't remember how long. What the fuck was that!!! Difficult to not fall into conspiranoia stuff...!

Makrosky,

in fact this is exactly what I have done when I supplemented with iodine, bar the selenium test. I expected my TSH to rise quite a bit, yet it was below 0.5 all the time. The only change I noticed was a slight increase in free t4.

The last couple of days I've been taking iodine, and I'm having the same benefits again. This is all quite strange, and makes me doubt that it is really the improved thyroid function that makes such a big difference in how I feel, as thyroid hormones did not do the trick for me.

There is some evidence that iodine acts against certain pathogens, but this is all quite vague. Still, maybe my health problems stem from a a deeper, underlying problem that can't be rectified by simply improving my metabolism, as unpeatarian as it sounds.

Hey Marko,

Some things come to my mind:

  • You were indeed very iodine deficient in the first place, that's why it works so good on you.
  • Iodine indeed kills pathogens of many kind. Some even claim it kills candida in the gut as well.
  • Iodine helps LOTS of other organs in the body, not only thyroid. Adrenals, gonads, stomach, pancreas, etc.
  • Apparently, a single dose of iodine can "flush" RT3 in the body that might be slowing your metabolism. This is one good explanation of why it acts so quickly. It's not that creates more t3/t4 or whatever, it's that it just releases the "brake pedal" (RT3).
  • I've read Dr. Brownstein saying many times that taking NDT won't help you if you're still iodine deficient.

Sorry I can't cite you where I got this from. Sometimes in scientific papers, sometimes on boards, sometimes on Dr B's website, other random websites ... There's lot of speculation, and this isn't necesarly bad. It's just because there's not much research done on it. The iodophobia which even a smart mind as Ray Peat has. You're not the only one wondering what the hell iodine does that it does it so good. Take it with a grain of salt.

Good luck! Let us know how it goes.

I did take Ciproflaxacin for Lyme treatment. I don't recall how much, but it may have been for a long time. Maybe other antibiotics I took also have flouride, zithromax, flagyl... not sure. Other than that, it's been a while since I drank much tap water, but I was exposed regularly in school as a kid. Every six months we had to brush our teeth in the cafeteria with a horrible paste that was like sand mixed with something horrid. we were given a small cup to rinse with which was totally insufficient to remove the stuff and weren't allowed to rinse after. total insanity. I have to wonder if the emphasis on flouride and bromine toxicity is not mostly an attempt to find an explanation for the observed phenomenon of positive responses to iodine. I doubt it's hurting anyone to get rid of the stuff, but it seems like there is an over reliance on that as an explanation for positive and negative (detox symptoms) effects. It also seems to liberate or result in the flushing out of other toxins.

Like I said when I started this thread, I think we need to recognize that there is probably vastly more ignorance regarding the effects of iodine, both positive and negative, than there is true understanding. I think that's okay and pretty normal when it comes to human physiology. One thing that gives me pause about Ray Peat is that very rarely does he express hesitation, recognition of doubt or lack of understanding on subjects. There is often a simple answer to questions, often quoting a study that seems to show definitively that substance x does this in rats or people etc.... That's a big red flag for me, and as humble as he is in some ways, that still shows a sort of arrogance or false confidence. We hear the positive stories plenty (person X had miraculous recovery on two days of substance Y) but never the failures or unexplained paradoxical reactions which these forums are full of. I have the same problem with Brownstein and almost everyone else. I want to hear people expressing ignorance on a regular basis, because that is just reality. All the health seeking (and many failing) veterans on here must know what I'm talking about when I say that it is easy to be indoctrinated into a seemingly rock solid health dogma, only to find that it isn't solid fact after all, but rather hypothetical and it just doesn't work for us, or even has the opposite of the desired effect. Don't get me wrong, there are lots of things I like about Ray Peat and I think he's at least trying to look at the problem of human physiology from the very base. But I too find his position and attitude on iodine dismissive and frankly rude. I still think his view is valuable and the questions it raises important, but it seems too rigid and sure of itself. The iodine docs are also very rude and dismissive, a tone that I think was set by Abraham. I am very wary of Abrahams stuff given that he seems to be some species of fundamentalist Christian which from my view is a yardstick by which to measure his capacity for self delusion and ability to operate on faith. His theory of iodine insufficiency in soils is something along the lines of god put X amount in the soil and as the planet ages, there is less and less? I don't remember for sure, but something like that. It's not my intention to offend any religious sorts out there, but from my view, Abrahams religious views are very relevant in understanding his basic attitude around iodine as a substance that apparently can do no harm. If he's capable of the degree of self delusion required to embrace the bible as a source of irrefutable truth, I can only take him so seriously on anything else. I think his attitude, and his whole satirical iodophobia-as-a-disease thing, has largely carried down through to the current batch of iodine docs. That may be part of the reason Peat is so reactionary. That mocking attitude is pretty offensive to people who may think they have very good reason to be cautious about iodine. I think it's time for them all to step off the play ground and grow the fuck up.

After having Kidney pain on two days of 100 mg of Lugols, I chilled out for a while and didn't take any. I have been taking T3 for about a week, starting with 25 mcg and working up pretty quickly to 50 mcg (cynomel). I thought maybe it was helping for a few days, but nothing miraculous, and yesterday it just didn't seem to do anything good for sure. That has been my experience with any thyroid I've taken... not much of anything. If anything, my temps have crashed out. They are very unstable as it is, but they feel low and slow the last half a week or more. "normally" I am running around in a tee shirt even after dark and I frequently drive the 8 miles or so to a job I do twice a week in a tee shirt with the window down, almost regardless of the weather, but not lately. Even when they are up, those temps are not consistent at all, but I'll usually get an evening rise near or above 99.

Last night (3:00 am) I took 25 mg of Lugols. No results so far. My body is so chaotic that I really haven't got much of a baseline to compare too. I'm also doing various other things, including some chinese herbs for kidney support/cleaning/healing. I am feeling pretty sure that iodine increases my uveitis and may have increased my eye pressure (think glaucoma) This is a difficult place for me to be. At once iodine is very promising and has delivered unprecedented, if short lived and inconsistent, results, but seems to worsen what is possibly my most acutely serious problem which results in increased steroid use, which will eventually leading to cataract and glaucoma. I was inclined to push through the eye stuff a few weeks ago, hoping it was just temporary, but then the kidney thing got in the way. Dudes, whatever, I mean seriously, where the hell to start....?

I'm really enjoying this conversation and the many substantial and thoughful comments, and I think it's a conversation that needs to happen. I continue monitoring the Iodine group I'm on, but it's constantly being steered back toward "the protocol" in which many seem to have unwavering faith. Still there is a steady stream of people with seemingly serious issues when taking iodine, or who are just not seeing the promised results. Recently someone on there was pushing the idea that simply taking more would result in antioxidant effect and adrenal support that would obviate "detox" or other negative symptoms. A number of people reported good results and a number came back with negative results (me being one). Of interest though, is that some of the people that responded well to high doses reported having lots of negative symptoms on a lower dose. Mostly that just adds to the confusion, but what doesn't with iodine?

last week's metabolic panel showed almost identical BUN/creatinine results to last spring. liver looks okay. TSH was nice and low, under .4 BTW, my original iodine sufficiency test (24 hour urine with 50 mg iodine tablet) didn't show much insufficiency, if that is to be believed at all. Of course the Iodine guys say that if you excrete most of it, you may just have defective absorption and need to address that. Maybe they're right, but it sort of reeks of building your theories around your already accepted beliefs that iodine sufficiency is the main problem and rectification of it is the primary mechanism at work. Am I right to think that Ray Peat would basically dismiss the symporter theory of iodine transport into the cell, since he rejects the cell membrane/transporter theory altogether?

I'll probably continue to toy with Iodine ingestion, but if there is a pattern to my chaos, it might be that everything I do that has any positive effect quickly results in a crash. If I can figure out what that is about, I might make some progress. If the problem is primarily hormonal regulation or insufficiency, I think my options are to pursue basal causative stuff to try to get it all working ala peat or something like Iodine which some claim to actually fix the problem and create balance, or I commit to hormone supplementation and tweaking. I really don't want to go the latter route, and my interest in iodine is largely based in the idea that it may lead to this sort of auto-balancing effect at least to some extent, or maybe to the extent that I can get some momentum in the right direction. I'm inclined to think that detoxification may be a major mechanism by which iodine works and I plan to continue to pursue that as well in other ways if I can figure out how to keep it productive and not stir up too much of a shit storm. I'm willing to take chances at this point since my life as it is simply isn't worth that much to me and at 48 I only have so much time to figure this problem out and still become a high functioning individual who can realize my high creative and productive potential. That doesn't mean I'll just do any old stupid thing (edging in an orgone box with a crystal up my ass... which honestly sounds a lot funner than some of the stuff I've tried ;), but iodine still looks promising at this point.

Agree with you Steven (again!).

Please follow my advice : Buy some SSKI (potassium iodide) and try something like this for no less than a week :

  • 90 mg SSKI + no lugol/iodoral
    or
  • 90 mg SSKI + 12,5mg Lugol/Iodoral
    or
  • 120 mg SSKI + 25mg Lugol/Iodoral
    or
  • 300 mg SSKI + 50mg Lugol/Iodoral

Whatever option you feel more comfortable with. All the options with at least 200mcg selenomethionine OF COURSE.

Please try it. I think the KI/I2 ratio in Lugol/Iodoral is what causes many of the problems we normally experience or see on the internet. Including yours.

I found 120mg SSKI + 25mg Iodoral was giving me the best results and I didn't experience ANY bad symptom, whereas before 25mg iodoral would smash my liver very bad.

If you, as you say, are going to continue experimenting with it, you won't regret the decision of experimenting with SSKI. I guarantee you that.

Thank you Makrosky. I will try that. I remembered you suggesting that before, but lately I'm always in a kind of information overwhelm. Thanks for laying it out plainly enough for me to just try it. I might start with a little lower SSKI to start, just for cautions sake, but I'll more or less give that a try.

Does anyone have an opinion on topically applying lugol's? I am pretty risk averse when it comes to iodine (because I have no clue whether I need it), and I thought topical application might be safer. My main health-related issues at the moment are extreme insomnia, intermittent exhaustion (which might be caused primarily by the insomnia) and extreme social phobia/anxiety. Thanks.

kapow I don't recommend anyone to start using iodine before having read about it. It can work extremely well but only if you learn how to use it. You can start with this (just a beginning) : http://jeffreydachmd.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/The-Guide-to-Supplementing-with-Iodine-Stephanie-Burst-ND.pdf

Regarding topical use... Yes I've read about it. Can't give you more info but yes I know there's people who use it.

I really liked your write up. It shows a keen insight into the trap that many of the natural health people fall into. I loved this line: "One thing I've observed in 15 years of chronic illness is that health practitioners often have a very exaggerated view of their ability to help people and often dismiss information or patients that don't fit into what they have already decided is true." What a great line!

I have found that most ideologies around this subject start from the premise that whatever they are supporting is good for you objectively, independent of context. With Iodine, it is good for you because we do not get much of it in our diets and are exposed to all these other halogens that are terrible, and by God you just can't get enough of that brown, chemical tasting, stuff.

Same with the magnesium advocates, the B12 advocates, the Methylfolate groups, etc.

They almost all have some premise that is logical and supports the idea that whatever they are into is good for you, period. Then, like you said, when people do not experience ascension to paradise, the favorite "you're detoxing" gets thrown out there.

My experience with Iodine was different then yours. I took one drop of lugols for a few weeks. At first it was great; I felt more aware, more tuned in, and emotionally I felt like I was waking up to patterns I was stuck in. Then the adrenal fatigue set in, and I could not sleep. Or when I did sleep, I was waking up every hour to go pee (aldosterone issues). I was exhausted and wired at the same time, and yes I was taking the supporting nutrients blah blah blah. It did not work for me. I guess I could not get over the "detox" hump.

I don't have an answer to this question except to reiterate what Ray Peat says about Context, and how important that is. If I were in your shoes, and very interested in this iodine issue, I would go to the source of the high iodine diets: The Japanese and other peoples who consume lots of sea veggies. Delve into their lifestyle (context), and think outside the box. Are they angry, are they fearful of things that do not make sense culturally to us, do they have certain sleeping patterns, do they eat lots of spicy foods, do they avoid spicy foods? A lot of times, things that look unrelated are actually connected in some way. Maybe they do have all those iodine benefits, but they have problems with alcoholics? Look at everything. Then come let us know!

answered Jan 12, 2015 by Tarmander

Yes, context. It's so easy to forget it and fall into a mechanistic non-dynamic view of health and physiology. I still find myself falling into the mechanistic trap, but I certainly "know" better. I'm not sure if that is because of human nature or maybe a penchant of western thinking. It is definitely central to medicine and that has probably seeped into the culture at large as an influence. It is very tempting to put faith in a substance whether it's iodine or B12 or coconut oil to fix everything, but nothing works for everyone. Matt Stone has helped to get me thinking in context more. I think a lot of his ideas are Peat recycled into something that can be applied to the real world. The most valuable thing he has to offer is probably the idea of monitoring some basic biofeedback to monitor progress or regression and to put more weight into that than into faith is some idea that "makes sense" when it's laced with enough science, logic (or rationalization) and testimonials. I feel like I'm on good grounds for experimenting with taking that attitude, being cynical about the effectiveness or relevance of "health" practices and interventions. And obviously I'm skeptical enough ;)

I have definitely thought about launching a serious investigation into iodine supplementation to bring some sanity and relative objectivity to the discussion. Health pursuits are not a passion of mine though and I have lots of other things I'd rather be doing. Also, I hate reading and trying to analyze scientific studies.

Have you tried quitting sugar, eating organic, adding more coconut oil, quitting gluten, eating more raw food, drinking more kale, meditation, EFT, adding liver and grass fed butter, cod liver oil, grounding, removing mercury fillings, B12, iodine, magnesium, silica, diatomaceous earth, shitting three times a day, sleeping and taking coffee enemas while quitting porn? that will definitely make you super amazingly healthy.

Hahaha, oh man I love that last paragraph. I think I have actually done every one of those things at some point in my life to "get healthy."

Any substance can have those effects, Vitamin A can have the same effect, so does Vitamin D, Magnesium, Thyroid, Progesterone, Coffee, salt and several others but, that doesn't mean they are the missing piece in the puzzle, you are just restoring some balance and you can fuck up that balance if you take too much of any given substance.

If something I have learned through my health journey is that there is no magic bullet. I'm not saying that Iodine is not working for you, I'm just saying that you can't reduce the cause of your lack of good health to a lack of a single substance.
Keep up the open mind, so if you see any future negative symptoms consider Iodine as a possible cause, FWIW.

answered Jan 13, 2015 by Eyes of a Crab

The reason I spent time looking into Iodine and ultimately tried it was the enthusiasm of testimonials. Aside from thyroid, I'm not sure I've seen such good testimonials for any other substance. And not just it fixed this one thing, or that thing, but it seems to have a real overall rejuvenating and balancing effect something like Markosky describes in comment below. Similar to the effects of thyroid supplementation or other metabolism boosting activities on some people, which I guess is no surprise given that iodine is clearly acting on the thyroid. I'm not really looking for a magic bullet. I feel like many things are in place and i'm doing plenty of things right, but there is some missing key, or maybe a few of them holding me back. At this point I'm thinking thyroid is probably major. I've been on desiccated thyroid and off iodine for 3 days and still going much stronger than usual. I'd like my body to run on autopilot without adding too much in the way of supplements or hormones, and I still think that iodine may have the potential to actually fix messed up endocrine function more than supplementing with hormones does.

As I already said too, I am doubtful that the effect of iodine is just one of replenishing a deficit. There is something weird with the dosing. I can take 6.25 mg (one drop lugols 5%), which seems like a lot by normal dietary standards, but I don't really see much benefit till I'm taking 25 mg. There is a discussion on an iodine forum I'm on where someone is saying they had really bad effects (attributed to detox/healing crisis) on single digit doses, but it all went away and they feel great on 100 mg. I've heard this before and this person mentioned several other people that are having the same experience, though all short term results. Brownstein also has something about hitting a certain level of dosing being important for some reason, but I can't recall right now... something about an enzyme and antibodies. The cynic in my wants to RUN when I hear an iodine cheerleader say to take more if it isn't working right, but there is clearly something really interesting going on with the dosing. Others recommend starting slow and working up. Clearly, over all response and best dosing regimen are highly individual.

I've generally come to the conclusion that I'm probably going to be dead before any non-mainstream health topic gathers enough information to be 'settled' on, hence, once again, the only thing that remains is... self-experimentation?

Iodine gave me better skin and vivid dreams, but it made me feel worse overall... curious, that.

answered Jan 14, 2015 by JuiceUser

ha! You're probably right. It would be nice to at least form a clearer idea of just what the risk v.s. benefit is. What kind of doses were you taking? Lugols or something else? My skin also improved. At one point I had no chalklines on my arms. I've had strong chalklines or even shedding dandruffy stuff on my forearms since I have a little kid. One of the reasons I think my thyroid may always have been iffy.

I took up to 20 mg of Lugol's but most days only 12.5 mg's. I took 200 mcg selenium with that. Both of those made me feel quite a bit worse to the point I had to quit them, even though it's the opposite of what you'd expect would happen.

At the time I was taking all the supposed co-factors, that didn't seem to make a difference. Shrug.

I couldn't agree more with your original post. I also found Iodine to be very helpful with my health issues, like nothing else has helped. It’s like resetting my body/mind to it’s original state. I would be taking it daily if I weren't "a chicken". I'm afraid something will go wrong and I won't have anyone to help me because almost anyone in my country knows about iodine supplementation. There's people on the iodine curezone forum that has been supplementing iodine for more than five, seven or even nine years with now problems whatsoever. I’ve only taken Iodine for periods of one or one and a half months continously.

I can clearly remember the first time I took Iodine. I felt like resurrecting. I felt like I’ve been blatantly lied about everything health concerned. The answer was so simple as Iodine. But ... damn! I’m scared to damage myself. Iodine supplementation is just so un-researched...

Anyway Iodine (in the form of potassium iodide) has been used at doses of even 3grams daily for weeks or months for treating some diseases. I think big pharma and medical stablishment just doesn’t like iodine because it fixes so many things and can’t be patented.

I also have been reading about iodine as much as I could during the last two years. As you said, I found lots of people has reported problems BUT you know it’s always the same : Only people who run into problems write desperate things on internet forums. Maybe there’s another 90% of people for whom Iodine works flawlessly. I don’t know. I have the exact same concerns as you.

One thing I’m worried about is that since the metabolism is kickstarted, you will consume lots of other macro/micro nutrients and you can be depleted. Selenium is MANDATORY while on Iodine but there’s others like zinc, copper, Vitamin A, etc.

It’s also possible that since Iodine displaces lots of toxins, it can clog your liver. When you have a clogged liver al sorts of weird health problems will happen. After all, the liver is the CENTRAL metabolic body factory : glucose, fat, toxins, hormones, T4 to T3, etc.

It is also plain common sense that Ray Peat can't be RIGHT in everything. People who follow blindly Ray's advice is clearly against Ray's own principles of no-authoritatianism and so on. It's just ridiculous.

I think Ray got it wrong regarding Iodine. He doesn't even give any specific reason. He doesn’t cite any source or anything. THAT is authoritarianism.

By the way, one of Ray's mentors, Albert_Szent-Györgyi, is said to be a heavy Iodine user. Some sources (I haven’t found the primary source though) claim he was takign ONE GRAM of Iodine daily. BEWARE: In the form of Potassium Iodide (KI) NOT elemental Iodine (I2).

I also liked the comment by Brian about high calories from rice+potato and metabolism.

answered Jan 15, 2015 by Makrosky

The Nobel Prize winner biochemist Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, who is best known as the discoverer of the Vitamin C molecule was a big fan of iodine. In his biography, Dr. Szent-Gyorgyi calls iodine “the universal medicine”.

Where is that biography??? I would like to access the primary source of that statement.

Yeah, the stuff sure feels good. How much have you taken? I don't want to take it indefinitely. I'm thinking one should be able to taper off of it down to normal dietary doses eventually. I don't have a good sense of how often that happens for people.

It seems like there is a steady stream of people with problems coming through the forums. Some of them sound quite serious, like drastic low thyroid symptoms and goiter. You're right though, internet forums definitely can't be assumed to be a representative cross section.

There is some audio interview where Ray Peat says that he has a list of some 70 or so studies showing problems with iodine supplementation. What I'd like to see is for him to a do a well considered article addressing why it might be that it seems to work so amazingly for some people. Why high doses might be required to achieve results, and what's up with the selenium being protective or not.

Hey Steven,

It's strange. Sometimes a single Iodoral tablet of 12,5 mg caused great effect. Sometimes 12,5 didn't do anything and I had to raise to 2 x 12,5 mg. Iodine is f***ing tricky, mostly because of the detox thing. Then 3 x 12,5 mg. caused very nasty detox symptoms.

What I've found that works better for me (and flawlessly at least for 1,5 months in a row) is 90-120mg of SSKI + 12,5 mg Iodoral, daily. Plus selenium, zinc, copper, mag, vit c, b-vitamins. The Brownstein protocol. A pain in the ass to take so many pills but one feels so good that I end up telling to myself "it's just a small price. A small annoyance in the path". And it's really worth the hassel.

Why the two ? It's complex. The thing is :
SSKI is muuuuuch more gentler on the body than I2. There's medical literature (RECENT, from the 2000's, not like 40 years ago.) of therapeutical doses for infections of up to 3-6 grams x day for a month. For metabolic/general helath purposes I don't think you need more than 1 gram x day maximum. As I say, I do quite well on 120mg. Then somehow I noticed that adding that 12,5 iodoral was improving. But of course there's many combinations.

The thing is that you barely get any detox symptom from KI. And somehow adding KI lessens A LOT the I2 detox symptoms. So there's a good synergy.

I don't know if I made myself clear. Please ask whatever you need.

By the way, from my experience, if you've loaded up heavily on iodine, the good effects last a few weeks once you discontinue the use. But eventually you come back to where you were before if you completely discontinue it. However, I've read testimonies that once saturated with iodine, people do very well on a single weekly dose.

I'm afraid there's no definitive answer for this.

BTW, I would LOVE to see that 70 articles list. Are they indexed articles ? I mean, pubmed accessible ? I repeat : Ray Peat can't be right on everything, it's just common sense. I'm wondering if he has tried SSKI and/or I2 on himself.

And regarding your use ... well, one thing I can say : If you use Iodine for short periods like me because you're afraid, then use those short periods to make the changes in your life needed to be more healthy. Use it as a "shuttle". Rarely health issues are purely biochemical. We're humans, not machines.

My best wishes.
M.

I've had some mixed results as well. The first few doses gave me a weird shift in mood that lasted only a very short time, like maybe an hour give or take, but it was very definitely a negative shift. I've had a little weird feeling around my thyroid area a couple of times, like maybe mild swelling or irritation, but not even enough to be sure I wasn't just trippin'. Also, recently a gland near my throat was swollen, which may have been a salivary gland, a symptom iodine users sometimes report. Even that though I 'm not sure of as I was getting over a cold. Other than those, I think it's been all good stuff, or sometimes nothing at all.

I'm not sure if 12.5 mg is enough for me. 6.5 doesn't seem to do anything. 25mg has had obvious benefits lately.

I know Brownstein says that he didn't start getting the expected results until he used lugols and that you need both forms since conversion of one to the other doesn't always happen.

I totally agree on using good periods to try to make progress in general. Post Peat, I view our physiology as having two basic overlapping modes, pro-metabolic and pro-stress. I can eat lots of sugar or take this or that or make sure such and such is in adequate supply, try not to be a stress puppet etc, but I believe I'm chronically stuck in the stress side of the equation for the most part in which state, most stuff is just not going to make any material difference in my experience. Normally, I just can't make that much progress. It feels like iodine is shifting me radically toward the good side. Most of the time, the things that I know could help under other circumstances, like exercise and strength training, breathing retraining and sleeping more/better just don't work. I've felt for a long time that I'm right on the threshold of good health, but haven't been able to figure out the missing puzzle piece or pieces. Is iodine deficiency the missing piece? I won't discount that possibility, but I'm inclined to think that the phenomenon of radical improvement on iodine is due to more than just replenishment. We're dealing with a such a complex system that is seems like folly to expect to really understand it. I like understanding how things work, but we truly are vastly more ignorant than we are knowledgeable, and I think it behooves us to keep that in mind. Our physiology should ultimately be mostly self correcting and not require added hormones and carefully tweaked supplementation of nutrients just to function. I think an interesting way to view it is that we've lost our resiliency, our physiologic ability to adapt to varying stresses and changes in our internal and external environments.

Regardless of what iodine is doing, I'm all aobut taking advantage of that foot in the door to do stuff to encourage the positive side of the equation and hopefully reset myself into beneficial feedback loops (C02 producing metabolism of energy v.s. lactic acid producing seems it might be the center of the picture if there is one) instead of negative ones that are stress associated or mediated. But I need weeks and months, not days. I just woke up at 3:00 AM with pain and stiffness in my back to the point that I can't even straighten all the way out. I think that the last few days in which I've been hoping that desiccated thyroid was helping were probably just the residual effects of the iodine I was taking last week. So I got up and took 25 mg of lugols. The experiment continues...

I wish I could remember what interview it was where he said that he had a stack of studies on the negative effects of iodine supplementation, but it's probably the same list that Lita Lee has as mentioned here at the end of the interview. I emailed to get those, but haven't heard back. Maybe you could try too and they could be posted here or somewhere if we can get them. Honestly, I really hate reading scientific studies and don't really feel like I have the mental clarity to tackle them the way they need to be tackled to decide if they are relevant or not. No one seems to dispute that there are many studies showing that iodine is potentially very harmful to the thyroid. I think the questions to look at now are, to what extent selenium is protective when supplementing with iodine and if higher doses are less likely to cause issues than low doses. I don't think it's always easy to translate scientific studies into application in daily life. Most people on here probably consume a lot of sugars, but it's obviously very easy to accumulate overwhelming mountains of scientifically derived information that can convince the average person that sugar is the most evil thing ever. Sorting all those isolated fragments of information according to relevance or legitimacy and translating them into conclusions or a plan of action is fraught with danger.

Woke up this morning after 25 mg dose of lugols at 3:30 am with persistent erection, waves of feelings of well being (very unusual), sort of a growing euphoria, definitely more energy and my first stress free breath holding time (buteyko control pause) on waking was 17 seconds. I'm not sure I can afford not to take the stuff! Only time can tell more of the story though. Thanks everyone for all the thoughtful comments.

I also have had similar results using Lugol's, but again like you guys, I'm concerned with something going wrong. I've considered it has it's effects through: detoxing heavy metals to include iron, detoxing estrogen, displacing chlroine, bromine, etc, actually just making more thyroid hormone T4, killing bad bacteria in the gut. I add it to a body spray.

I suspect that maybe where most people go wrong is their liver (selenium deficiency) isn't sufficiently converting T4 to T3 which seems principle to turning off TSH and TRH.

I don't know what is the best form, but I've tried Nascent which doesn't seem to make much sense to me as most of these elements are safer as salts (chloride, bromide, iodide, fluoride -over flourine), etc. But then I've read elsewhere that Potassium Iodide is toxic to the thyroid. I don't get it.

I'm using Cynoplus and am definitely even more afraid of using more iodine now. The other thing that doesn't make sense is that they test your urine to see how much is excreted to see your iodine status. If it's so damn dangerous, why worry if we just piss the excess out??

Perhaps using synthetic thyroid hormones simultaneously gets best of both worlds because it shuts down the TSH and TRH and you get whatever other detox benefits from iodine??

Steven, I quote you :

I know Brownstein says that he didn't start getting the expected results until he used lugols and that you need both forms since conversion of one to the other doesn't always happen.

Please keep in mind : Brownstein is a GP, he needs to address a wide range of health issues with simple solutions. He found that Lugol/Iodoral was delivering the expected results to the majority of people for what he was looking for, including lots of women issues (ovaries, breasts, cancers, etc.). However, that doesn't mean we can't TUNE the ammount and ratio of KI/I2 of iodine we take to better benefit us.

Is iodine deficiency the missing piece? I won't discount that possibility, but I'm inclined to think that the phenomenon of radical improvement on iodine is due to more than just replenishment.

I don't think all of the people who benefit from Iodine is "iodine deficient". For the majority of the people, I think that is just a "metaphor". As you said, we don't know how it works but IT works very well. It is like salt. It doesn't mean we are salt deficient, or sunlight deficient, it means that if we take more, we feel better.
OR... maybe we indeed are iodine deficient because of all the external polutants. Well, I've no idea, really. Although I've researched Iodine supplementation extensively (the information about it it's not extense at all, ironically) take everything I say as a personal opinion, of course.

I think an interesting way to view it is that we've lost our resiliency, our physiologic ability to adapt to varying stresses and changes in our internal and external environments.

Not only physiologic, PSYCHOLOGICAL as well. I always try to minimize the mind/soul/EMOTIONS in the health equation because it's easier to think about vitamins and calories and minerals, but the truth is it plays a very big role, a role most people who talk about health and nutrition tend to forget.

I don't think it's always easy to translate scientific studies into application in daily life. Most people on here probably consume a lot of sugars, but it's obviously very easy to accumulate overwhelming mountains of scientifically derived information that can convince the average person that sugar is the most evil thing ever. Sorting all those isolated fragments of information according to relevance or legitimacy and translating them into conclusions or a plan of action is fraught with danger.

Agree again. Basing your decisions on pubmed articles is ridiculous, so is creating your whole health frame pulling pubmed articles. Life isn't a collection of isolated experiments. It is much more. Things don't work on isolation. Clinical experience counts. Experience counts. TRADITIONS count (i.e TCM/Ayurveda/etc). For instance, a bunch of nerds with PhD's dissect pubmed articles and claim that eating cattle, milk and smoking cigarrettes 7 days a week is beneficial, that doesn't mean it's true.
One thing I would like to know about is Ray Peat's CLINICAL experience. Has he cured people ? I mean, him working as the clinician, not people who over the internet has read his articles and guessed what a Peat Diet is.
Does he cure people with his intervetion ? Again, personal intervention, not over the forums.

Woke up this morning after 25 mg dose of lugols at 3:30 am with persistent erection, waves of feelings of well being (very unusual), sort of a growing euphoria, definitely more energy and my first stress free breath holding time (buteyko control pause) on waking was 17 seconds. I'm not sure I can afford not to take the stuff! Only time can tell more of the story though. Thanks everyone for all the thoughtful comments.

Yes it's difficult to stop taking it. One thing you can do is keep testing your TSH, FT3, FT4 and antiTPO+antiTgbA (should cost around 60 bucks) every once in a while so you know things aren't getting out of whack. TSH goes weird while under iodine, the others should remain under good range.

I also have had similar results using Lugol's, but again like you guys, I'm concerned with something going wrong. I've considered it has it's effects through: detoxing heavy metals to include iron, detoxing estrogen, displacing chlroine, bromine, etc, actually just making more thyroid hormone T4, killing bad bacteria in the gut. I add it to a body spray.

Glad to hear it works good for you. Also keep in mind Lugol can be harsh on the stomach for lots of people. Iodoral is much milder.

I don't know what is the best form, but I've tried Nascent which doesn't seem to make much sense to me as most of these elements are safer as salts (chloride, bromide, iodide, fluoride -over flourine), etc. But then I've read elsewhere that Potassium Iodide is toxic to the thyroid. I don't get it.

Toxic to the thyroid...? I don't think that is true.

Perhaps using synthetic thyroid hormones simultaneously gets best of both worlds because it shuts down the TSH and TRH and you get whatever other detox benefits from iodine??

I don't know but I know Dr. Brownstein is very knowledgeable and a big fan of natural bioidentical hormones and Iodine. Don't know if at the same time or not but you can investigate what he says about it. It wouldn't surprise me if he uses both at the same time, since he thinks iodine is essential (like salt or water) so it just works along with any hormones you might be taking. Check him out. He has books on it.

Makrosky,
After doing both thyroid (cynoplus T3 and T4) and lugol's iodine, my hands seem colder most days. I'm not sure if i'm just not eating enough now or what. My hands rarely got cold without these supplements. Any ideas?

sbs, sorry I have zero experience with NDT or synthetic t3/4. I know Brownstein uses iodine with NDT, rarely he uses synthetic. So I would say either go Dr. B's route or Ray Peat route. Otherwise it's difficult to "debug" problems.

Remember Peat discourages Iodine supplementation.

I don't know about cynoplus but Iodie is a tricky supplementation. Different people get different results with different dosages. You might need more research on iodine supplementation.

What is well known is that when you start iodine supplementation and depending on the dose, you can (not everybody experiences this) have a temporary (48-72 h) episode of hypothyroidism due to wolff-chaikoff effect.

Sorry I can't help you more.

Just an update. I went up to 100 mg to see what would happen and ended up with Kidney pain for a few days, but no improvement and none of the benefits I've experienced previously. I'm inclined to think it's because of mobilization of metals and or other toxic stuff and my kidneys are just not up to the task. my kidney function is already poor according to elevated creatinine near the top of the reference range, and poor bun/creatinine ratio.

Kidney pain is not an uncommon occurrence in iodine supplementation from the poking around I did, but some people get over it and are able to continue. Then again, others get it months into supplementation. Another mystery. The experiment continues. I'm sort of inclined to go back and revisit chris shade's mercury protocol which concentrates on the liver pathway in order to spare the kidneys which he claims are compromised in many mercury toxic people. I didn't seem to tolerate it very well previously, but I'd probably start slower this time.

Interesting that 100mg proved to be too much.

I again increased to 12.5mg yesterday. Instantly better erections and mood (a lot more playful). The hands temperature seems to be normalizing with more food.

I can't figure out why iodine would do this. Synthetic thyroid definitely raises my metabolism and calms me down, but it doesn't bring some of the benefits iodine does.

I at one time was a big user of phytoesterogens and goitrogens (soy isoflavones) because I bought into the rate of living hypothesis. I wonder if somehow iodine is displacing that stuff whereas synthetic thyroid would not.

I don't think I've been excessively exposed to any heavy metals besides maybe iron.

Steven, 100mg Lugol is quite a lot. Kidney pain is extremely normal with iodine supplementation, it has to do more with bromide excretion, and less with heavy metals. Although the later could be present as well.

If you really have good experiences with iodine but you have issues with detoxing, I highly suggest you to try SSKI (potassium iodide). It's cheap. It's effective. It doesn't create detox reactions. It's still iodine. And you can take up to half a gram without strong adverse reactions, only a possible hypo period for the first 48-72h.

sbs3915, Iodine isn't only for the thyroid. There's lots of other body parts where Iodine is useful, including skin, prostate, ovaries, breasts, and so on.

Good luck!

The only other thing that seems off since starting back on iodine is shedding of hair.

I've been doing some research and it appears that is more related to high selenium than high iodine.

I've also added powdered milk and more cheese to my regimen, but I'm not sure if that is related.

Markrosky,  I bought some "Iosat" which is a pill form of potassium iodide.  I've been getting cystic acne on my face and neck which I suspect may be due to increased male hormones or some form of detox that I don't understand.  

I don't like this brand due to fillers and excipients.  Do you have a recommended source for SSKI?

Since reducing selenium to 100mcg a day, my hair shedding has mostly stopped, and it looks thicker again.  

Iodine gives me more erections, but I seem more sensitive down there and therefore, faster ejaculation.  Any thoughts on that?
hi there,

One of the main detox symptoms with iodine is pimps. So yes it could very well be detox. However it's strange because potassium iodide barely produces detox symptoms, how much are you taking and for how long ? Keep in mind iodine supplementation can cause hypothyroid symptoms for the first 72hour or so.

I bought SSKI from a user in ebay called pittacus311. He's legit. It's good quality, although, really any KI source should be good. It's just a plain chemical compound. Doesn't have any fancy stuff. Does IOSAT have anything else than iodine + fillers ? How much KI is in every pill ?

I've read before about hair shedding while taking selenium. I don't have an explanation for that. Have no idea, really. However selenium is MANDATORY while taking iodine. If you can't take at least 200mcg of selenomethionine a day, I would forget about iodine and go another route. For real. Don't play with that. Iodine without selenium is dangerous for the thyroid. And no, don't use brazil nuts or anything, you can't know how much selenium is on them.

No idea about the ejaculations. It's said that magnesium and vitC are also necessary cosupplements while taking iodine, albeit not as important as selenium. Sorry.

Good luck. Ask whatever else you might need.

I have had very similar experiences with iodine supplementation, but I, too, have stopped taking it since I was scared I might permanently damage my health, partly because I felt iodine's effects were simply too good to be true. I've done everything: eating 6000 calories a day of low pufa/high everything else, eating a strictly Peatarian diet of up to 8000 mostly liquid calories, taking insane amounts of thyroid hormones, taking insane amounts of pregnenolone, and basically every other supplement recommended by Peat, but nothing could fix my low libido, general lethargy and falling hairs, dull skin and basically a myriad of other problems. Iodine fixed these within just a few days of supplementation. I am not new to Ray Peat's ideas, and I have been restricting Pufa for almost a decade - the benefits however were limited at best.

Some dramatic effects I've experienced on varying amounts of iodine:

  • restored libido to youthful levels
  • fixed the sallow tinge of my facial skin, made my skin tight
  • high awareness and high energy, clearness of thoughts
  • helped my digestion, especially with regards to protein (without iodine I need copious amounts of sugar to not get bloated after drinking 1l milk)
  • gave me vivid dreams (although, I'm not sure this is a good thing)
  • increased bile secretion
  • had a 'liquifying' effect on the fat deposits around my waist and the abdomen, which vanished eventually (but start to accumulate again after I stopped supplementation)
  • dramatically increased vascularity, even though I don't exercise anymore

I've been monitoring my thyroid when I supplemented, and my TSH remained at zero all the time. I'm thinking about starting permanent supplemenation of iodine, since it's the only substance that helps. But I'm really curious about the 'subtle degenerative changes' Peat talks about with regards to iodine supplementation.

answered Feb 5, 2015 by Marko123

What kind of doses and source were you using? I have noticed positive results from low dose iodine between 150-300mcg with additional selenium, but I definitely had a thyroid crash from kelp powder (probably around 1-2 grams per day).

I was using Lugol's and I was taking between 12.5 mg and 50 mg daily, as per Brownstein. Everything in the context of a high calorie, nutrient dense diet. Like Steven, I didn't get any of the benefits with supplementation in the microgram range. I also question whether the dramatic effects some report with iodine supplementation can be reduced to improved thyroid function. Despite persistent health problems I've never been hypothyroid, and iodine's effects felt quite different from those of other substances I have used to increase my metabolism.

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