One of the findings that have come out of the COVID-19 studies, is the need for Zinc. One of the first symptoms of COVID is the loss of taste and smell. That is a sign of low Zinc. All viruses deplete our bodies of Zinc. What we are discovering is COVID is particularly good at this.
I have had many emails and phone calls over the last couple of weeks. Many of you are asking for a list of things you should be taking for protection against COVID-19. It’s been many months since I put together a suggested list so I decided to create something I could share with everyone.
If you’re older than fifty you probably remember the standard salt on the table was Morton’s “iodized” salt. The U.S. was historically iodine-deficient prior to the early 1920s, particularly in the goiter belt region of the Great Lakes, Appalachians, and the northwestern area of the country. This was due to the effects of natural atmospheric processes. Following the successful implementation of the salt iodization program in Switzerland. Iodized table salt was introduced in the U.S. during the 1920s which significantly improved its iodine nutritional status.
We don’t hear much about iodine anymore. Yet it is an essential nutrient and, essential in the prevention of many cancers.
When we think of iodine we usually focus on its important role in making thyroid hormones, which it does and is essential for that to happen. What many of us don’t realize is the role it plays in many other parts of the body. The levels of iodine have dropped 50% over the last fifty years, could that be why we are seeing such a spike in breast, ovarian, and prostate cancers?
Iodine’s Role in the Body
Iodine is found in each of the trillion cells in the body. Not only responsible for thyroid hormone iodine is also responsible for all the other hormones in the body as well. Iodine levels are important for proper immune function. It is antiparasitic, antibacterial, antiviral, and has anti-cancer properties. Iodine is also very effective for treating fibrocystic breasts and ovarian cysts.
Went for my breast Thermography exam yesterday and need to share the positive changes in my body from iodine. One year ago my breasts were hard, lumpy, swollen, and hormonally inflamed. After one year on iodine, all of the inflammation is gone and my breasts are so soft. I know in my heart that if I didn’t start the iodine protocol that I was heading down a very dark hole. Also, my dead and cold thyroid lit up when last year it didn’t even register in the exam. Theresa M.
What is the amount of iodine found in iodized salt? Iodine is added to table salt at 100ppm in the form of potassium iodide, which amounts to 77ug iodine/gram of salt. It is estimated that less than 50% of the U.S. population uses iodized salt. Much of the population is told to go on a “low salt” diet due to high blood pressure as well.
Additional sources of iodine can be found in seafood, seaweed products, multi-vitamins, eggs, meat, and dairy if the feed contains iodine. During the 1980’s much of the iodine was removed from food products. One of those items was white flour. Iodine was removed and Bromide replaced it, Bromide is an antagonist to iodine.
The deficiency of iodine is reaching a critical state. The RDA for iodine is 150ug (micrograms) There are certain sub-groups of people that are at a higher risk of iodine deficiency.
- Diets without fish or sea vegetables
- Low sodium diets
- Diets high in the consumption of white flour products
- Vegan and vegetarian diets
The Iodine Breast Cancer Connection
Researchers have looked at breast cancer and the hypothyroidism connection for over 40 years. There are researchers that feel that thyroid disorders such as hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s Disease are associated with the development of breast cancer.
One study compared women taking thyroid hormone vs women not taking thyroid hormone and found a 50% increase in the thyroid hormone group. This same study found that breast cancer incidence was linearly increased the longer the time period the women took the thyroid hormone. The highest risk group was for those who had been on thyroid hormone for over 15 years.
So what is the link between taking thyroid hormone and breast cancer? Many researchers feel it’s an iodine deficiency. When taking a thyroid hormone you increase the metabolic rate of the body and in turn you increase the need for iodine. When iodine deficiency is present, which it is in a large group of the population, the longer the thyroid hormone is taken the more deficient you become.
Iodine is not only needed…
Iodine is not only needed for thyroid hormone but for every hormone in the body. Every gland concentrates iodine and utilizes it to manufacture hormones. Every cell depends on adequate iodine to run the cell machinery optimally. The thyroid hormone raises the metabolism of every cell in the body, therefore, the need for iodine goes up for every cell in the body. If iodine is deficient, thyroid hormone therapy will exacerbate the iodine deficiency further.
But what came first? Iodine deficiency or thyroid hormone deficiency? More than likely it was an iodine deficiency that had been going on for years prior to seeing the hypothyroidism present itself.
Dr. David Brownstein’s book “Iodine Why You Need It – Why You Can’t Live Without It” has testimony after testimony of patients who had been on thyroid hormone therapy and yet still did not feel well. Many had Hashimoto’s disease, an auto-immune disorder of the thyroid.
I diagnosed my nurse with Hashimoto’s disease. Angela’s complaints were fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and a general sense of not feeling well. She was only 23 years old. Angela was treated with iodine (50mg daily) and a complete supportive nutritional program. Angela felt about 30% better on the program. When she walked into my office one day she saw a bottle of ATP co-factors on my desk and asked “what is that?” I told her it was additional therapy for Hashimoto’s, Grave’s disease, Fibromyalgia, and Chronic Fatigue patients. She said, “I have Hashimoto’s, how come I’m not on that?” I had to admit I hadn’t added that into her program. After starting on the ATP co-factor (B-2, B-3) she felt an immediate improvement. Dr. David Brownstein
It’s easy to just think we can go out and start taking some iodine but that is not the case. It’s important that you are working with a health care practitioner that is familiar with how to dose iodine and the other co-factors that are necessary to take.
Iodine can have a detoxification effect on the body. Remember, every cell in your body needs iodine but there are other competing chemicals that may have prevented the absorption of iodine. These are called “halogens” and include chlorine, fluoride, and bromine. They fill up the receptor site for iodine at the cellular level. If incorrect dosages of iodine are given and/or not enough supporting nutrients are on board, the body will actually get more toxic.
Necessary cofactors include:
- Vitamin C – 2,000mg-5,000mg daily in divided doses.This nutrient is high in antioxidants and works to buffer the oxidation caused by the detoxing of halides from the cells. Vitamin C is also needed by the symporters and helps to support them in their healing process which allows iodine to more readily enter the cells.
- Selenium – 200-400mcg daily. Selenium is used by the thyroid in the hormone creation process. There is a selenium-containing enzyme glutathione peroxidase which functions to keep the hydrogen peroxide reduce to H2) after it converts iodide to iodine. When selenium is deficient this process of defense is impaired. Selenium is also contained in iodothyronine deiodinase. This is an enzyme that is responsible for the conversion of T4 to T3.
- Magnesium 200-400mg daily. This nutrient works to counter the excess calcium in the cells. When there is excess, the oxidation process can be fueled and be part of the autoimmune thyroid issue.
- Unrefined salt such as Celtic, Pink Himalayan or Sea salt 1/2 tsp. daily. Supports the adrenals, binds to bromide, and assists in its removal.
- Optional, ATP CoFactors B2/B3 1 tablet 2x daily. These two nutrients are needed by the cells to produce more H202 to assist in the oxidation process of iodine. It also stimulates the NADPH pathway, where iodide is converted to iodine. This would be important for those dealing with an autoimmune thyroid condition such as Hashimoto’s.
Testing for Iodine
I recommend that you order a 24-hour loading and bromide level test kit prior to supplementing with iodine. This is recommended because you may obtain a high saturation level on the iodine loading test. As a result, you believe your levels are fine when in fact bromide toxicity will block the iodine receptors not allowing the iodine to enter the cell which results in an elimination of iodine when it is needed/deficient thus skewing the test results.
It is not recommended that you do the spot test as this is only an indicator of how much iodine is in the diet and the amount that has been ingested in the last 24-48 hours. It offers no real value in determining the body saturation level.
Hakala Labs has the 24-hour loading and the add on of bromide analysis. As of this writing, the 24-hour iodine loading test runs $70, and the add on of bromide is $35. Below is the link for ordering.
I want to encourage you again to work with a doctor, functional medicine doctor, naturopathic doctor, or nutritionist if choosing to do an iodine supplementation program. Iodine supplementing can be very detoxifying and you may experience unpleasant symptoms. When working with a health care professional they can guide you on proper dosage and how to deal with detoxification symptoms.
A great book to read is Breast Cancer and Iodine: How to Prevent and How to Survive Breast Cancer by Ph.D. Dr. David Derry M.D.
One of the blessings and a curse of iodine supplementing is that toxins are released in the body. It is a blessing because bromide, fluoride, mercury, and lead are released from the cells so that the healing can begin. But the curse comes from the large amount of toxins being released which in most cases, cannot be eliminated quickly and effectively. The average person has no idea just how toxic they become. By the time illness sets in, the toxicity is more than likely very high.
Prior to starting an iodine program a few weeks of concentrated liver, lymphatic support, kidney, and digestive support with the purpose of increasing bile, cleaning up the diet, and cleansing the body, will offer a better result on your iodine journey.
- History of U.S. Iodine Fortification and Supplementation, Angela M. Leung, Lewis E. Braverman, and Elizabeth N. Pearce, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3509517/
- JAMA Vol. 236. No. 10.09.1976
- Changes in Dietary Iodine Explains Increasing Incidences of Breast Cancer with Distant Involvement in Young Women, Journal of Cancer, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5327366/#
- Iodine, Why You Need and Why You Can’t Live Without It, https://www.drbrownstein.com/iodine-why-you-need-it-p/iodine.htm
- Iodine, Fluoride, Chlorine, Bromine: The Health Effects of Halogens,
Can you imagine as an adult how many we have after living decades on this earth?
Even if we eat a “clean” diet we cannot avoid a build-up of chemicals in our tissues. Pesticides, herbicides, phthalates (found in “scents” used in cleaning products, air fresheners, laundry products, etc.), arsenic, BPA from plastics (hormone disruptors), and all the list of chemicals found in our drinking water. It’s enough to make you want to throw up your hands and say “I give up!”
As we start to open up our country we will venture out more and more. We will eventually be exposed to COVID-19. How prepared do you think your body is to create antibodies against it?
As we just moved across two state lines we were in many public places. We didn’t worry as we have done our job of supporting our immune systems with good food, sleep, ideal weight, and specific nutritional supports. Stress was probably the biggest concern, as moving is stressful!
We are in the midst of the strangest times but one of the beautiful things about it is, we are back in our kitchens cooking!!
Let’s look at a beautiful whole food that most of us probably have in our kitchen, honey. I often get asked, “is honey the same as sugar?” The answer to that question is “NO!”
Why You Should Ditch Sugar for Honey
First, honey is a whole food and sucrose is not. In other words, sucrose is an isolate – technically only one chemical compound – lifted from a background of hundreds of other components within the whole plant, whereas honey is composed of an equally complex array of compounds, many of which are well-known (including macronutrients and micronutrients, enzymes, probiotics, and prebiotics, etc.), others whose role is still completely a mystery.
Even the “sugar” in honey, which we might equate to the sugar in sugar cane or beet sugar, is a complex mix of 25 different types of sugar. Modern man in his “wisdom”, around the 1800s, started refining the sugar cane and eventually beets to create a single molecule called “sucrose” which has wreaked havoc with our health. Of course, there are now many names for sucrose when you look at a food label, but no matter what the name it doesn’t compare to the amazing benefits of honey.
But the differences between honey and sugar are not simply based on their respective chemical and nutritional compositions, but also the length of time we humans have had to adapt to them as a source of energy and nourishment.
8000-year-old cave painting from the Araña Caves in Spain.
We can assume our love affair with honey goes back ten’s of thousands of years! Our bodies have had infinitely more time to adapt to honey than to sugar.
The Beautiful Benefits of Honey
I’m often asked, “can I eat honey and will it raise my blood sugar and put weight on?”. There was a double-blind, randomized clinical study published in 2010 in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, comparing the effects of honey or sugar on your appetite hormones (ghrelin, peptide YY) and the glycemic and thermic effects after a meal. This was done on 14 healthy, non-obese women. The researchers found that the group given 450 calories of honey with their breakfasts had a “blunted glycemic response which may be beneficial for reducing glucose intolerance.” they also saw a positive modulation of appetite hormones, delayed the postprandial (after meal) ghrelin response and enhanced total peptide YY levels!!In
In Layman’s Terms
Ok, in layman’s language, that means you don’t’ get as hungry as soon after you eat and your blood sugar doesn’t spike which leads to weight gain.
Another study published in Journal of Medical Food in 2004, which compared honey to dextrose and sucrose, found that natural honey was capable of lowering plasma glucose, C-reactive protein (inflammation marker) , homocysteine in healthy, diabetic and hyperlipidemic subjects (people with high cholesterol.)
Animal research also confirms that, when compared to sucrose, honey is more effective at promoting lower weight gain, adiposity (fat accumulation), and triglycerides, WOHOO! Are you loving your honey yet???
Eat It Raw
Raw honey contains enzymes and probiotics which are destroyed when heated. These compounds contribute directly or indirectly to honey’s amazing health benefits, so go “raw” when you buy honey.
Take the active starch-digesting enzyme amylase, for instance, found only in the raw form of honey in a form known as diastase, which is believed to contribute to clearing antigen-antibody immune complexes associated with allergies to pollens. Also, if it is local honey, it will pick up small amounts of local pollen which may help to “immunize,” or desensitize an overly active immune response to these environmental triggers. There is also the enzyme in raw honey known as glucose oxidase, which produces hydrogen peroxide. The hydrogen peroxide formed as a result of this enzyme is associated with honey’s well-known wound sterilizing and healing properties.
Honey is also rich in prebiotics, as attributed to some of the carbohydrates and probiotics that contribute to supporting the healthy flora in our gut as well. Recently, in fact, an abundant, diverse and ancient set of beneficial lactic acid bacteria were discovered within the honeybee gut. Researchers found a collection of 50 novel species from the genera Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium from a single insect! Consuming raw honey, therefore, likely significantly impacts the microbiota within our own gut, and is one way to reconnect to ancient symbiotic relationships with flora that in our modern, sterilized, pasteurized, irradiated, poisoned, cooked, and the bleached world, are all but eradicated from our environment, soil, food, and therefore bodies! These probiotic boosting properties may explain why honey is effective at healing gastrointestinal disorders.
Bee products, including venom, wax, propolis ((Bee Propolis Abstracts), royal jelly, etc., have been found to provide potential medicinal solutions for over 170 different health conditions (587 Bee Abstracts) expressing over 40 distinct beneficial pharmacological actions. This growing body of research should awaken in us a greater respect for this sacred insect — even if only for selfish reasons — and when we say sacred, the word sacred means “to make holy,” and the word holy shares the same root meaning as the words whole and heal, so incredibly powerful!
The sad part of this is we are seeing an explosion of colony collapses. The correlation between pesticides and big agrichemicals can not be understated in the role they are playing in destroying our bees worldwide. These chemicals radically transform the bee’s natural habitat and microbiota which has been around far longer than we an imagine. Support Organic farmers!!
10 Day Detox
Yes, we get to have honey during our 10 Day Detox! Our next class starts on April 13th and what a perfect time to kick the sugar habit and build your immune system. Teaching you powerful truths such as “honey vs sugar” is what I love to do during these ten days. Let’s focus on ancient wisdom and the healing power it has!
Learn more here… 10 Day Detox