Sunday, April 3, 2011

Japanese Radiation Update 7: Why You Should Consider Iodine Therapy

I just wanted to give you a quick update on the Japanese nuclear disaster. It is clear that there has been a meltdown at the reactor core. The amount of radioactivity released into the air and the ocean is very large. This may surpass the amount released at Chernobyl.

There is no question that radioactive particles will be carried by the jet stream and deposited over North America. In fact, there have been multiple reports of radiation spikes occurring in a number of states. Now, the amount of radiation reported has been low. But, do not let that fool you. If you are iodine deficient, your body will try to absorb iodine from whatever source it can get it from, radioactive particles from Japan included.

As I mentioned in a previous post, it is important to ensure that you are iodine sufficient. How can you do that? The first step is to work with a health care provider who is knowledgeable about iodine. Next, you can get your iodine levels checked. Many labs will do this with a simple urine test. FFP labs and Hakala Labs do the most complete test on iodine, the 24 hour loading test. I describe this test in more detail in my book, Iodine Why You Need It, Why You Can’t Live Without It, 4th Edition. You don’t need a doctors order to complete this test.

Finally, ensure that you are taking adequate amounts of inorganic, non-radioactive iodine in order to maintain whole body iodine sufficiency. Iodoral (Optimox), Iodozyme HP (Biotics) and Lugol’s solution are examples of this type of iodine that are effective for maintaining whole body iodine sufficiency. The amount of iodine needed to achieve whole body sufficiency, for most of my patients, varies between 6-50mg/day. What do I mean by ‘whole body sufficiency’?

Many people and experts talking about the problems with radioactive iodine focus on the thyroid. The thyroid gland has the largest concentration of iodine in the body. However, every cell in the body needs and requires iodine to function optimally. The breasts, ovaries, uterus, prostate, and other tissues also contain large amounts of iodine. If the body is deficient, these tissues will take up radioactive iodine if given the chance. The whole premise of ortho-iodo supplementation that I discuss in my book is to ingest enough iodine in order for all the tissues of the body to be iodine sufficient. The consequences of iodine deficiency are severe—increases in cancer of the breast, ovary, uterus and thyroid. Radioactive iodine exposure in an iodine deficient state will increase the risk of cancer. Again, I discuss this in much more detail in my book.

The best results with iodine therapy are when it is combined with a holistic treatment regimen. This includes taking vitamin C and salt. Furthermore, correcting nutrient imbalances and detoxifying will help. Finally, ensure that you stay hydrated.

There is no need to panic over the Japanese disaster. You can use this situation as a wake-up call to ensure that you are doing all that is possible for maintaining your optimal health. Finally, remember to educate yourself about iodine so that you can make the best health care decisions.


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