Wellness and You
Iodine and Breast Health
January 27, 2009
Iodine deficiency in the typical American diet has lead to a host
of serious health problems. The average American consumes about
240 micrograms of iodine a day. The average Japanese person consumes
about 50 times more. Americans also consume a range of substances
that make that small amount of iodine available for the body’s
health. Chlorine and fluorides in the drinking water antagonize
iodine use, as does the use of bromine in baked goods. The trace
amount of iodine in some table salt is made more difficult to utilize
because of the chloride in the salt. Add to this the decreased use
of table salt for “health” reasons, and the problem
Donald Miller, Jr, MD1 explains that this increased
iodine consumption in Japan appears to play a major role in health.
The US has the highest incidence of Breast Cancer in the world;
while Japan, until recently has enjoyed the lowest rate of breast
cancer. Life expectancy in Japan is one of the highest of the Industrialized
Countries. About 1 in 7 American women will develop breast cancer.
Thirty years ago, when the iodine consumption was twice what it
is now (480 mcg / day) breast cancer incidence was about 1 in 20.
While one might argue that many other factors have changed in those
thirty years, research repeatedly strengthens this connection between
iodine and breast health. Both breast cancer and fibrocystic breast
disease appear to have an “iodine connection.”
Animal studies have shown that iodine is somewhat protective against
breast cancer that is induced with chemical carcinogens. Animals
raised on iodine deficient diets develop fibrocystic breast disease
that is reversible with iodine intake. Women have repeatedly been
cured of fibrocystic breast disease with adequate iodine replacement.
Women with goiters (swollen thyroid glands) who are deficient in
iodine are 3 times more likely to get breast cancer2.
A high intake of iodine is associated with a lowered incidence of
breast cancer. Women who develop fibrocystic breast disease find
relief and usually cure with therapeutic doses of iodine, an inexpensive,
safe, effective therapy that is too often ignored by Mainstream
Medicine. This makes for much unnecessary expense and suffering.
Dr. David Derry, MD, PhD3, feels that iodine plays a
major role in apoptosis (self destruction of abnormal or cancerous
cells) and helps prevent the development of breast cancer, while
adequate thyroid hormones maintain the integrity of connective tissue
to prevent metastasis of cancerous cells. Cells that avidly take
up iodine include: the thyroid gland, which uses it for the manufacture
of thyroid hormones; the gut, to allow iodine to enter the circulation;
breast tissue, to prevent cysts and abnormalities; skin; the brain;
bones; and joints.
Properly administered, iodine is a safe, essential and protective
supplement. It plays an essential role in healthy thyroid function,
in overall health, and especially in breast health. Lugol’s
Iodine Solution is an excellent source of iodine and iodide. I place
most of my patients on the equivalent of 2-8 drops, diluted in liquid,
daily. It can relieve fibrocystic breast disease, help prevent cancers,
help detoxify fluoride, chlorine, and heavy metals, and it is essential
It is truly unfortunate that Mainstream Medicine ignores the value
of adequate iodine supplementation, but even more unfortunate is
its opposition to adequate iodine intake. In the mid 1900s there
was a much greater use of iodine. Today, most physicians labor under
the mistaken notion that only the thyroid gland uses iodine. Iodine
is critically important for breast health, immune system readiness,
cancer fighting, and protection from some microbial infections.
Iodine has been shown helpful in the treatment of migraine headaches,
fibromyalgia, thyroid disorders, diabetes, as well fibrocystic breast
disease. When iodine is used in therapeutic amounts, it is essential
to maintain good nutrition with special attention to adequate intake
of selenium, magnesium and Omega 3 essential fatty acids.
- Iodine for Health. Donald W Miller, Jr, MD, www.donaldmiller.com
- Miller op cit
- Breast Cancer and Iodine: How to Prevent and How to Survive
Breast Cancer. David Derry, MD, PhD Trafford Publishing 2002
- Iodine: Why You Need It-Why You Can’t Live Without It.
David Brownstein, MD. West Bloomfield, Michigan. Medical Alternatives
For more information visit the website
Board Certified in Psychiatry and Board Eligible in Neurology
with special interest in Thyroid, Adrenal, Chronic Fatigue,
and Natural Hormone replacement for men and women.
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