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Of all the elements known so far to be essential for human health, iodine is the most misunderstood and the most feared. Yet iodine is the safest of all the essential trace elements, being the only one that can be administered safely for long periods of time. In the last century iodine levels in our bodies have fallen significantly due to increasingly polluted environment and nutrient depleted soil. Iodine deficiency is widespread, and it affects all stages of human life, from the intra-uterine stage to old age. We are hopeful that more research will continue to prove significance of iodine supplementation to our wellbeing.

Iodine is the primordial antibiotic that has been forgotten simply because it was not a patentable medicine. It is an exceptionally powerful healing agent with extraordinary powers. Usually associated with thyroid iodine is not only necessary for the production of thyroid hormone, it is also responsible for the production of all of the other hormones of the body. Our vital organs such as prostate, ovaries, uterus, skin, thymus gland, breast and brain require iodine to function properly – every cell in the body contains and utilizes iodine to properly perform their function.

Iodine deficiency disorder poses serious health risks such as mental retardation, increased child and infant mortality, infertility, and predisposes one to an increased risk of breast, prostate, endometrial, ovarian cancer, and many other illnesses. It appears that iodine deficiency has more relevance to women because of its estrogen balancing action. For women, a balance of estrogens is vitally important for numerous bodily functions including ensuring optimal function of the brain, ovaries, breast development, and lubrication of the skin. Additionally, imbalances in estrogen production are associated with weight gain, mood swings and disorders such as diabetes as well as cancer of the breast, ovary, and uterus. Estrogen has been implicated as a causative factor for the two most common breast disorders – fibrocystic breast disease (FCD) and breast cancer.

Estrogen balance is impossible to maintain when there is iodine deficiency present. The incidence of fibrocystic breast disease in American women was only 3 percent, when studied in the 1920s. Today, however, 90 percent of women have FCD. Data support the hypothesis that FCD is caused by a deficiency of iodine making the epithelium more sensitive to circulating estrogens. In response, these cells produce more fluid than can be absorbed by the acini (ducts) so they form micro-cysts which can over time lead to breast fibrosis and breast cancer. The treatment for this is relatively simple and very effective: iodine supplementation as part of a holistic treatment regimen that includes detoxification. Estimates are that the breasts need approximately 5 mg of iodine per day in a 110 lbs woman. Recommended daily amount of iodine for supplementation by clinicians of previous generations of 12.5 – 37.5 mg and today`s RDA of 150 micrograms seems incomparable. Important here is to reference that Japanese women consume over 13 mg of iodine daily and continue to report lowest incidence of breast cancer in the world.

The good thing about science is that it`s true whether or not you believe in it”. -Neil deGrasse Tyson

Russian researchers first showed, in 1966, that iodine effectively relieves signs and symptoms of fibrocystic breast disease. Also, in a composite of three clinical studies published in the Canadian journal of Surgery in 1993, two done in Canada and one in Seattle at the Virginia Mason Clinic, showed that iodine effectively relieves signs and symptoms of fibrocystic breast disease in 70 percent of patients.

Over 100 years ago, the application of iodine to the skin was used extensively for iodine supplementation. In 1932, Nyiri and Jannitti of Rutgers University College of Pharmacy wrote about iodine being used extensively as a preventative and therapeutic agent by application to “the outer integument” (skin). Until this research iodine`s external application was based merely on an empirical basis, but these researchers were able to prove that iodine (water solution) penetrates through the skin and that it is removed only slowly from within this area into the body, thus forming an iodine depot in the skin for several days. Approximately 88% of the iodine evaporates from the skin within three days. The remaining iodine on the skin, approximately 12% of the total iodine applied, penetrates through the skin so one can conclude that skin application of iodine is an effective, if not efficient and practical, way for supplementation of iodine.

This fairly fast rate of evaporation and not-so-desired staining of the skin can be minimized by suspending iodine in appropriate fatty carrier with expectation that binding the iodine with oil keeps the iodine on the skin longer and thus further enhances iodine`s therapeutic effect. However, we are not aware of any studies conducted to determine if such formulation indeed improves iodine absorption, so we continue to reference 12% iodine absorption of unbroken skin. Research suggests that iodine is taken up by duct epithelia and is organified into an iodoprotein component of the estrogen receptor. It is believed that organification of iodine in mammary tissue is a marker for normal estrogen-responsive cells. Ingestion of an appropriate amount of iodine normalizes the function of these critical cells in the breast and restores normal estrogen sensitivity, leading to reversal of the anatomic and symptom complex of FCD.

Transdermal application of iodine, like magnesium for example, should only be considered as complimentary and holistic practice with understanding that even small amounts of iodine absorbed through the skin can have good effects on body organs or particular body area but might not be sufficient to provide adequate levels to entire body. Daily massage of breasts with iodine formulations will help reduce breast tenderness, nodularity, fibrosis, and number of cysts. Correcting iodine deficiency has proven to have many positive health benefits; iodine is super effective detox agent and can remove highly toxic chemicals from our bodies – fluoride, bromide, lead, aluminum, mercury as well as biological toxins. It works to suppresses auto-immunity, strengthens the T-cell adaptive immune system, protect us against abnormal growth of bacteria in the stomach, improve skin completion and hydration, and protect us from cancer and radiation.

“Iodine intake is the simplest, safest, most effective and least expensive way to help solve the health care crisis crippling our nation.” The Leader of “The Iodine Project”, Dr. Gay E. Abraham, MD Former Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Endocrinology at the UCLA School of Medicineo

r f Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Endocrinology at the UCLA School of Medicine.


To learn more this topic research work of Dr. D. Brownstein, Dr. J. Flechas, and Dr. G. Abraham and others.

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