The Lugol's iodide complex, otherwise known as Lugol's Solution of Iodine contains iodine and potassium. The solution provided here is derived from mined crystals (see photo), not from shellfish or kelp. Yes, this is extremely important since most of the kelp on the planet now contains radiation. Also the iodine in shellfish is very allergenic in addition to being the wrong iodine molecule (more about this below).
Of all the minerals needed by the human body, why do we provide this one for your use? Dr. David Brownstein, considered one of the top experts on thyroid and iodine says that 95% of the people he has tested (lab analysis) are low in iodine. Iodine is contained in the thyroid as one of it's most important elements and works to kill germs. Every 17 minutes, ALL the blood in your body passes through your Thyroid and gets "dosed" with iodine which acts to kill any germs that should not be there. If you find you are Immune deficient, it may be a simple need for Iodine. There are many uses for Iodine in the body, literally every cell in the body needs Iodine for healthy function.
Why are most people deficient? Because our foods don't really contain enough Iodine, and the further from the ocean you live, the more chance there is that you are deficient. Most of the (US) population get's their Iodine from iodized salt. Because table salt is not good for the body, people have become more conscious of salt use, and so there is less Iodine intake. In addition to that, Bromide and Flouride are Iodine blocking agents. We get exposed to these in our drinking water, toothpaste, flour and baked goods, as well as almost all the inexpensive supplements you buy, which are 'bromated'. Perchlorate, found in soil and drinking water is another Iodine inhibitor.
Now I consider myself a purist, which means I will always look to nature and creation to supply the answer and the best remedy. With this line of thinking, I would be ingesting things like Kelp or Irish Moss for my Iodine needs. While these options worked 20 years ago, it simply does not raise Iodine levels adequately anymore. For starters, Kelp sources now contain too much toxic pollution because the ocean has been vastly polluted. Any farm raised Kelp does not seem to supply the proper mineral elements so the final product is not therapeutic grade. Secondly, plant based Iodine is a colloidal type of Iodine and is a very low dose. You would have to take many handfuls of capsules to equate a therapeutic dose considering where most people's Iodine levels are and where they need to be.
Self-Test for Deficiency
Every cell in your body needs Iodine in order to function optimally. It would be to your great advantage to see if you are Iodine deficient. There is a home test you can do to see just how much iodine you might need. Pick an area of skin that you don't mind having a stain on for a day. The wrist, abdomen and inner thigh are generally considered the best areas. Rub 3-5 drops of the iodine solution into an area the size of about three quarters. The Iodine will stain anything it touches, so be careful! The longer the stain remains on your skin, the less likely it is that you need iodine. The stain should remain for about 18-24 hours. If you can still see most of the stain 18 hours later, you are not in need of Iodine. If the stain is gone before that, your body was very deficient and "soaked" it up to supplement (supply) the deficiency you have. Obviously, the faster the iodine gets soaked up, the more you need it!
Please note that Lugols is a therapeutic iodine. It IS NOT the same as the stuff used to disinfect skin before injections or surgeries. That particular form of iodine contains ingredients (like benzalkonium chloride) that are VERY toxic if ingested. While Lugol's iodine carries the same disinfective properties, there are no added toxic ingredients and is designed to be taken orally to supplement Iodine.
The answer on dosage really depends on who you talk to and what form of Iodine is being discussed. Therapeutically, the body can take in Iodine and Iodide. One is a negatively charged molecule and the other is not. The body needs both though, and which one is most important really depends on the individual. That is why my Iodine supplement of choice (Lugols) contains both kinds of iodine, both Iodide and elemental Iodine.
The RDA is 150 MICROgrams, which is found in most multivitamins and plant based supplements. If 95% of the population following the RDA is found Iodine DEFICIENT according to lab testing, then perhaps the RDA is misleading. The Japanese, whose diets traditionally consisted of foods high in iodine, found doses closer to 13 MILLIgrams more accurate for an RDA. At these low doses, it could take 9 months to a year for the body to take in enough Iodine to show you are in "normal" range. Some health experts say that 30-50 MILLIgrams daily is a better therapeutic dose, but at these dosages you really need to be sure that you don't have hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism as this could complicate the situation. (Signs of hyperthyroidism include oily or sweaty skin, high blood pressure, heart palpitations, jitteriness, bulging eyes. Signs of hypothyroidism include sluggishness, low blood pressure, dry skin, cold extremities, fatigue and hair loss).
According to the CDC, a single dose of 130 MILLIGRAMS of Potassium Iodide protects the Thyroid from radiation for 24 hours. This is considered an emergency dose because you are being exposed to radioactive Iodine-131. While this should not be used unless you are in that kind of emergency, some cancer doctors have used high doses like this for very short term periods to kill off cancer cells because of Iodine's germicidal nature.
So what is a safe dose? Well I suggest you do the Iodine test described above. Here is a rule of thumb for you. Your health practitioner might be able to give you more exact dosages with kinesiology or their own insight. (I am supposed to tell you to check with your doctor before using Iodine, and using it is at your own risk.)
If the stain produced on the skin lasts 10 hours or more, 3-5 drops is considered maintenance and should be all that you need. I would personally use the 5 drops. If the stain is gone in six hours, you may need as much as 5-7 drops a day of the 2% we offer. If the stain is gone in two hours or less, you may need as much as 15 drops a day. This is considered a pretty high dose by some, but I would personally use this dose without a second thought unless I had a diagnosed Thyroid condition.
If you find yourself deficient in Iodine after performing the home skin test, Use the recommended amounts in water (ugh) or your favorite organic juice - something strong, like Pomegranate or Grape.
Ingredients and MG Calculation
Ingredients is simply a dilute formula of Iodine and Potassium Iodide in water (2% Elemental Iodine, 4% Potassium Iodide and 94% Distilled Water).
Each VERTICAL drop of 2% solution is about 3.15 mg's of iodine/potassium iodide (1.25 mg iodine, 1.875 mg potassium iodide) and 2 drops is about 6.25 mg's of iodine/potassium iodide (2.5 mg iodine, 3.75 mg potassium iodide). Some people argue that 2% is not Lugol's solution, which is not entirely correct. To achieve 5% iodine solution, simply double the amount of drops (2%) applied/used.
To use as a water purifier add 3-6 drops of 2% iodine solution per liter of water.
There are three “hazards” to using iodine: staining, allergy, and a very small possibility of thyroid suppression with longer-term use of “too much”.
Staining can be a big nuisance, but it’s not a health hazard. When iodine is applied to skin, it can leave a faint to moderate orange-brown color, which fades from the skin as the body absorbes it. Iodine and other iodine stains in clothing can be semi-permanent or permanent, so don’t plan to wear anything “nice” in the vicinity of recently-applied iodine. A bandage of sorts can be applied to the skin over the iodine application site to keep from staining clothing if desired.
Iodine allergy is a possibility, although in nearly 30 years of medical practice I’ve (Dr. Jognathan Wright) has seen it only a few times. Typically, it causes a red, bumpy skin rash, which goes away after iodine or other iodine is discontinued. Topical (applied to the skin surface) iodine allergy is almost never a serious emergency. The type of “iodine allergy” that can interfere with breathing and occasionally sends us to the emergency room is usually not allergy to iodine or iodine molecules, but instead to much larger, possibly iodine-containing molecules found in lobster, crab, clams and other “shellfish”. These molecules are not present in iodine or iodine. However, if there’s any suspicion at all of iodine allergy, it’s best not to swallow any without testing for allergy or sensitivity.
Thyroid function can become suppressed if too much iodine is used (internally) for too long. Many of the uses described below for iodine are short-term, from a few days or less to a week or two. If iodine is then stopped, there’s almost no chance of significant thyroid suppression. However, if iodine is to be used for two to three weeks (internally) or longer, especially if it’s to be used continuously (for example, COPD or cholesterol-related atherosclerosis) monitoring thyroid function (via blood test) is very important. Fortunately, in my (Dr. Johnathan Wright, MD) experience with over a thousand individuals, internal use of less than nine drops of iodine daily has very rarely resulted in thyroid suppression. On those very few occasions, discontinuance has resulted in prompt recovery. So far, I’ve (Dr. Wright) never seen thyroid suppression result from “topical” (skin surface) use of iodine.
A final “safety” note: Dr. Kunin cautions that if you use iodine as an internal supplement “long-term”, make sure your diet contains plenty of essential fatty acids (both omega-3 and omega-6) as well as the sulfur-containing amino acids methionine and cysteine. If you eat animal protein daily, that’s usually sufficient as a source of these two amino acids, but if you’re vegetarian (or close), then take 300-500 milligrams of each daily.
Benefits and Uses
Many of the following points are from Dr. Jonathan Wrights "Nutrition and Healing" article. Each DROP referred to below was not of the 2% I am offering, but from the SSKI source, which is 15 times stronger than the 2% offered here.
Dr. Wright says, "When my wife and I are forced to travel by air, we drink a few ounces of water with 10 drops of iodine which prevents any “airline sinusitis” or other respiratory infection that often develops after several hours spent breathing re-cycled, germ laden air." (Iodine rapidly accumulates in any and all body secretions, including the sinuses, where it inhibits or kills bacteria, viruses, and fungi before they can cause an infection.)
Iodine can eliminate even the most severe cases of fibrocystic breast disease. [For the full details of this treatment, see pages 169-174 of The Patient's Book of Natural Healing by Alan Gaby M.D. and Dr. Johnathan Wright, MD.] In “medium” to “minor” cases, 6 to 8 drops of iodine taken in a few ounces of water daily will frequently reduce fibrocystic breast disease to insignificance within three to six months. Please do not do this without monitoring your thyroid function…see “cautions" above.
Women have helped ovarian cysts disappear within two to three months with the same quantity of iodine. Again, make sure to monitor your thyroid function! It’s very likely that iodine helps eliminate fibrocystic breast disease and ovarian cysts at least partly through it’s interaction with estrogens.
Iodine helps your body to metabolize estrone (a slightly carcinogenic human estrogen) and 16-alpha-hydroxyestrone (a much more dangerous metabolite of human estrogen) into estriol, an “anti-carcinogenic” or at worst “neutral” form of human estrogen.
“Dupuytren’s contracture” and “Peyronie’s disease” are two fibrotic conditions that can be helped considerably by iodine. In Dupuytren’s contracture, thickening (fibrosis) occurs along one of the tendons in the palm in the hand, pulling the related finger down towards the palm. As the problem progresses, the finger often can’t be straightened any more. In Peyronie’s disease, a very similar thickening occurs along the shaft of the penis, making erections increasingly “curved” and painful. In both cases, rubbing iodine into the thickened tissue at least twice daily softens and lessens the fibrotic area over a period of several months, allowing for more normal function. For these conditions, it’s additionally helpful to take para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA) 2 grams, three times daily, and to rub a mixture of Vitamin E and DMSO into the thickened areas as well. However, if caught early, iodine alone will often “do the job”. (It’s also advisable to have a glucose-insulin tolerance test done, as there’s an unusually high incidence of “insulin resistance” in people with Dupuytren’s contracture or Peyronie’s disease.
Keloids are abnormally thick scars, sometimes as much as an inch thick, that can form after injury. Although anyone can get a keloid, they’re more common among African Americans than other ethnic groups. Rubbing iodine into a keloid at least twice daily will ultimately flatten them down to a “normal scar”, but it can take many months to a year for particularly bad ones. The treatment goes faster if iodine is mixed 50-50 with DMSO.
Fistulas are literally abnormal tunnels through tissues, “tunnels” prevented from healing by chronic infection. Two fairly common types are “peri-anal fistulas” (a “tunnel” from outside the anus to the inside of the rectum) and “recto-vaginal” fistulas. They can often be healed by frequent swabbing inside and out with an iodine-soaked Q-tip. Patience is required! Complete healing often takes several months. The treatment appears to work better if the iodine is mixed with DMSO, which enhances penetration.
Richard Kunin, M.D. of San Francisco, is a world class expert on the use of iodine and other forms of iodine. He has found that hemorrhoids will sometimes disappear literally overnight, when iodine (20 drops) mixed with flaxseed oil (1 ounce) is rubbed in them at bedtime. He’s also found that iodine alone will do the same job, although it “really stings” when applied to a hemorrhoid by itself.
Professor Louis Feiser made a point of demonstrating to all the pre-medical students at Harvard that iodine and iodide would make oils, fats, and waxes (cholesterol is actually a wax) more soluble in water. This known action of iodide likely explains why iodine can be useful in the next two applications. Over 30 years ago, two ophthalmologists observed that a combination tablet called “Iodo-niacin” (iodide 120 milligrams, niacin 15 milligrams) taken for several months could actually reverse atherosclerotic clogging of arteries. They proved this effect by taking pictures of clogged arteries in the backs of the eyes (“retinal photomicrographs”) before and after treatment. The published photographs showed a significant lessening of the cholesterol-laden artery clogging in the “after” pictures. Amazingly enough, no follow-up study has ever been published (probably because niacin and iodide aren’t patentable). Despite this, the published pictures speak clearly for themselves. 4 to 6 drops of iodine and niacin-containing B-complex supplement used daily for anyone with significant cholesterol-related atherosclerotic clogging can be of great help. Thyroid function must be monitored!
Sebaceous cysts are cysts which contain oily, fatty material. They usually appear rather suddenly on the face or in the groin or labia. Rubbing in iodine mixed 50-50 with DMSO will almost always persuade these cysts to go away in a week or two; it appears that the iodide “dissolves” the fatty, oily material contained in the cysts, allowing your body to slowly re-absorb and dispose of it.
Parotid duct stones are “stones” which can form in the saliva-carrying duct(s) from the major salivary glands (“parotid” glands, located at the “angle of the jaw”). 3 to 4 drops of iodine taken in water daily will almost always dissolve parotid duct stones within four to eight months.
If you have chronic bronchitis and or emphysema (COPD), iodine is an invaluable tool. Iodine gets "into" all body secretions, including often thick and hard to cough up bronchial secretions, which get infected very easily. Iodine takes care of both of these problems. It loosens secretions remarkably, making them much easier to clear, and it prevents micro-organisms from growing easily. With regular iodine use, bronchial infection is a much less frequent happening. Depending on the severity of COPD, 3 to 6 drops of iodine taken in water once daily. As COPD is usually a chronic condition, iodine use will usually be indefinite, so make sure to monitor your thyroid function!
For this group, using iodine mixed 50-50 with DMSO works better, as the DMSO enables iodine to penetrate much more deeply into the tissues and kill germs. Infected hangnails are perhaps the easiest to clear up this way, as are nagging bacterial infections around the edges of the toenails. Rub in the mixture several times daily, and the problem’s usually gone in a few days. Herpes simplex (“herpes”) outbreaks can be “stopped cold” in the same way, but it often takes longer for the “sore” to heal itself over.
Iodine can also help clear up vaginal infections. 20 to 30 drops in water, used in a small “douche” once daily for five to ten days will usually do the job. (There’s actually a prescription-only iodine preparation available for vaginal infections too.) However, iodine preparations of any sort for vaginal infections are often not popular because of the inevitable orange-brown stains they leave on clothing.
Even though iodine and iodide are absolutely essential to thyroid hormone formation, in most “developed” countries, hypothyroid conditions are not usually due to an outright lack of iodine or iodide. Still, hypothyroidism is occasionally helped by 1 drop of iodine daily. That said, remember that Dr. Brownstein found most people are low in iodine, but it may not be causing any hypothyroid condition.
There’s a gastronomic use for iodine: reducing the gas we all get from eating beans! If you’re soaking beans before cooking them, add 1 or 2 drops of iodine, and let them soak for an hour or more. (Pour off that water before cooking, and add fresh water.) You’ll be surprised at the reduction in resulting intestinal gas! (For those who want a technical explanation: There’s a naturally occurring enzyme inhibitor in beans which interferes with starch digestion, producing gas. Iodine inactivates this enzyme inhibitor.)
Water purification. An Indian physician that did work in rural parts of Africa said,"The only drinking water available was from a local stream or river, muddy and contaminated. After removing sediment and debris by straining the dirty water through cheesecloth, add several drops of iodine, and wait two to three minutes." He reported that he and his team could then drink the water. In over 30 years, he never got an infection from contaminated water. The iodine killed any micro-organisms present.