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Should we be concerned that we are not getting enough Iodine? Not enough iodine causes thyroid illness, increases the risk of breast cancer, fibrocystic breast disease, fatigue and weight gain.

In the past, low iodine was seen when a person developed a goiter, an enlarged thyroid bulging out of the neck. To avoid this, iodine was added to salt. But now, people are cutting back on salt to protect their blood pressure and fluid retention. Vegetarians have a greater risk of being iodine deficient because food that grows from the ground has less iodine then eating animal meat.

Relying on iodized salt for your iodine needs may not be the best because once a salt container is opened, the iodine is nearly gone from the salt within four weeks. Most prepared foods have lots of salt but do not use iodized salt. The Japanese eat seaweed which is rich in iodine and the Japanese woman are known to have low levels of fibrocystic breast disease, breast cancer and thyroid disease.

My iodine suggestion for my patients is twofold

1. The sea if it’s clean is a healthy mineral soup. The plants that grow in the sea (seaweed) are extremely healthy. We ought to be eating a portion of seaweed, at least once a day and by doing so we will get a good dose of iodine.

2. Sun dried sea salt is healthy and has natural iodine. We get our salt in the health food store in bags coming from the dead sea ( or from pure coastal waters in France. Since this salt is not refined in anyway, it retains the sea’s natural content of iodine.

Warning: taking high doses of iodine can induce an autoimmune thyroid condition and therefore is best to practice moderation. Getting our natural iodine needs in our diet seems to be a great way to start.

The article was written by Dr Yisroel Yaffa who treats patients with thyroid. illness, treating using holistic approach that includes saliva testing and  iodine if needed.

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