(NaturalNews) Breast cancer seems to be on everyone's mind these days: How do you detect it? Prevent it? Reverse it?
Fortunately, preventing breast cancer is easy, and iodine is one of the key nutritional strategies for accomplishing precisely that.
Here, we bring you an extremely informative collection of information about how iodine helps prevent breast cancer. You'll learn how it works, which different sources of iodine are available today, and which books to read to learn more.
Big Pharma has no financial interest in looking at any natural product, including iodine. Q: Does iodine supplementation cause goiter? A: No. Iodine deficiency causes goiter, not iodine supplementation. Medical research has shown this for over 100 years. Q: Does iodine deficiency cause breast cancer? A: Breast cancer is a multi-factorial illness. However, the evidence linking iodine deficiency to breast cancer is overwhelming. Iodine deficiency may not be the sole cause of the epidemic of breast cancer that is plaguing us today, but, it plays a very large role in this illness. - Iodine: Why You Need It, Why You Can't Live Without Itby David Brownstein, M.D.
The thyroid gland needs approximately 6mg/day of iodine for sufficiency. The breasts need at least 5mg of iodine; that leaves 2mg (13mg-llmg) of iodine for the rest of the body. This 2mg is still well above the RDA (14x the RDA) of 150mcg/day of iodine. Either way, this would explain why the RDA for iodine is inadequate and why it is necessary not only to get your iodine levels evaluated but, more importantly, to supplement with the correct amount and form of iodine. FINAL THOUGHTS The connection between iodine deficiency and breast cancer as well as fibrocystic breast disease is strong. - Iodine: Why You Need It, Why You Can't Live Without Itby David Brownstein, M.D.
Donnie Yance, a health care provider who works with many women diagnosed with breast cancer, believes that a genetic predisposition to a weak immune system is a very strong risk factor for breast cancer. Iodine and thyroid hormones (both natural and synthetic) generally reduce risk of breast cancer. Max Gerson, M.D., an acclaimed (and controversial) cancer specialist, believed that iodine was critical to the process of countering cancer. Some researchers speculate that the low rate of breast cancer in Japan is due to the iodine-rich diet. - Breast Cancer? Breast Health! The Wise Woman Wayby Susun S. Weed
At iodine sufficiency, the largest amounts of iodine are found in fat tissue and muscle (striated) tissue. If obesity is present, the body's need for iodine increases as the fat cells of the body would require more iodine. As previously mentioned, women's breasts are major sites for iodine storage. Maintaining adequate iodine levels is necessary to ensure an adequately functioning thyroid gland and normal breast architecture. I believe it will also lower the incidence of breast cancer and help women overcome breast cancer. - Iodine: Why You Need It, Why You Can't Live Without Itby David Brownstein, M.D.
Breast milk contains more iodine than formula milk and premature babies who are formula-fed may be at risk of deficiency. Iodine deficiency may play a role in fibrocystic breast disease. Hypothyroidism and iodine deficiency may also increase the risk of breast cancer, as a higher incidence of disease has been found in iodine-deficient areas. Good sources of iodine include vegetables grown in iodine-rich soil, kelp, onions, milk, milk products, salt water fish and seafood. - The New Encyclopedia of Vitamins, Minerals, Supplements and Herbsby Nicola Reavley
Other than the thyroid, the highest concentration of iodine is found in women's breast tissue. When the level of iodine is low, the risk of acquiring breast cancer is greater, and as we're aware, the fluoride found in Prozac disrupts the iodine, reducing the iodine level. Also, women who acquire breast cancer normally have elevated estrogen and a low level of progesterone in their breast tissue as well. The natural progesterone keeps the estrogen levels in check, basically preventing the problem. And if you really want to prevent the problem, you should definitely avoid Paxil? - Antidepressants, Antipsychotics, And Stimulants - Dangerous Drugs on Trialby Dr David W Tanton, Ph.D.
Excess iodine is excreted in the urine or the sweat, tears, and bile. There have been no reported cases of iodine toxicity from naturally occurring sources in food or water. The RDA of iodine is 150 mcg for an adult male. Iodine deficiency has been known to cause hypothyroidism. It has been associated with increased cholesterol levels, atherosclerosis, fibrocystic breast disease, and breast cancer. Iodine deficiency can also be devastating to the developing brain, causing a mental retardation known as cretinism. Most developed countries, therefore, screen for hypothyroidism at birth. - Fundamentals of Naturopathic Endocrinologyby Michael Friedman, ND
But to get back to the topic of seaweed and breast cancer, there is more in seaweed than just iodine. Seaweed as a popular dietary component in Japan is a rich source of both iodine and selenium. Selenium acts synergistically with iodine. Selenium status may affect both thyroid hormone regulation and iodine availability. - You Don't Have to be Afraid of Cancer Anymoreby Bill Sardi
Women are particularly at risk due to environmental agents depleting iodine reserves and other agents exposing them to radioactive 1-131. After the thyroid gland, the distal portions of the human mammary glands are the heaviest users/concentrators of iodine in tissue. Iodine is readily incorporated into the tissues surrounding the mammary nipples and is essential for the maintenance of healthy functioning breast tissue. The radioactive decay of 1-131 in breast tissue may be a significant factor in the initiation and progression of both breast cancer and some types of breast nodules. - Fundamentals of Naturopathic Endocrinologyby Michael Friedman, ND
"There is growing evidence that Americans would have better health and a lower incidence of cancer and fibrocystic disease of the breast if they consumed more iodine," he says. Miller points out that Japanese consumption of iodine through seaweed is many, many times that of the United States, and that the health comparisons between the two countries are disturbing. He suggests that iodine consumption may be one of the many reasons why the incidence of breast cancer is so high in the United States and so low in Japan. - The Most Effective Natural Cures on Earth: The Surprising, Unbiased Truth about What Treatments Work and Whyby Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., C.N.S.
The foods richest in iodine are dulse and kelp. All sea vegetables basically contain all of the minerals of the sea, bringing us a good source of trace minerals in general. Iodine seems to work as a monitor, or controller, for calcium metabolism. It's one of the key minerals. Iodine has the highest frequency of all of Nature's essential minerals. It supports enzyme systems that help the functioning of certain thyroid hormones and assists in regulating cellular metabolic rates. It may be helpful in protecting against breast cancer. - Spiritual Nutrition: Six Foundations for Spiritual Life and the Awakening of Kundaliniby Gabriel Cousens, M.D.
Women in Japan commonly consume seaweed, known for its iodine content. Seaweed is reported to reduce the risk for breast cancer. [Japanese Journal Cancer Research 92: 483-87, 2001] In one study, thyroid disease incidence was higher in breast cancer patients than in healthy women (58% versus 18%). But other studies do not confirm that abnormal thyroid hormone levels are associated with breast cancer. [Nutrition Cancer 27: 48-52, 1997] It may be that an increased ratio of thyroid hormone over estrogen sets up a growth-promoting effect on breast tumors. - You Don't Have to be Afraid of Cancer Anymoreby Bill Sardi
Thyroid and iodine Hypothyroidism and /or iodine deficiency are associated with a higher incidence of breast cancer. Experimental iodine deficiency in rats results in a mammary dysplasia histologically similar to human FBD. Thyroid hormone replacement therapy in hypothyroid, and some euthyroid, patients may result in clinical improvement. Research has shown that thyroid supplementation (0.1 mg/day Synthroid) decreases mastodynia, serum prolactin levels, and breast nodules in, supposedly, euthyroid patients. - Textbook of Natural Medicine 2nd Edition Volume 2by Michael T. Murray, ND
There have been attempts to link two other dietary factors to breast cancer because Oriental women, so resistant to the disease, have better dietary supplies of selenium and iodine than do American women. These relationships may prove more tenable, for highly complex reasons. Selenium is related to the metabolism of Vitamin E, which I have already described as an anticancer factor, and iodine is related, of course, to thyroid function, which, as a member of the community of glands, is interrelated with the metabolism of estrogen. - Breast Cancer: A Nutritional Approachby Carlton Fredericks
"We think it's very important for the breast," Cann says about iodine. This mineral, he believes, may prevent and even shrink breast tumors by combining with certain fatty acids and stopping cancerous cells from multiplying. And without the selenium, iodine doesn't do its job properly. You can see the power of this dynamic duo in Japan, where people eat about 5 grams of sea vegetables virtually every day. Cann points out the Japanese have one of the highest life expectancies and a very low rate of breast cancer. - Eat and Heal (Foods That Can Prevent or Cure Many Common Ailments)by the Editors of FC&A Medical Publishing
An association has been made between low thyroid function and breast cancer; as a source of iodine and other trace minerals, sea vegetables provide optimal nutrition for the thyroid gland. The high content of potassium in seaweed is good for the heart and kidneys. The iodine in seaweed aids in weight loss also. Seaweed nourishes membranes, making it good for nervous disorders, skin conditions, colds, and constipation. It is high in chromium, which helps to control blood sugar levels. - Prescription for Dietary Wellness: Using Foods to Healby Phyllis A. Balch, CNC
It may not be chance correlation, then, that geographic differences in the incidence of these diseases are associated with differences in the selenium and iodine values in foods. Selenium is an antioxidant in the body, protecting the chromosomes from damage which can lead to cancer. Iodine, as you probably know, is essential to thyroid function, but it may also play a role, directly or through its function in thyroid hormone, in susceptibility to breast cancer. - Breast Cancer: A Nutritional Approachby Carlton Fredericks, Ph.D.
Seaweed is nature's richest, most bioavailable source of organic iodine, a substance lacking in the average American diet and directly related to the high incidence of thyroid disorders. Many of my patients with ovarian or breast cancer are deficient in iodine and show signs of low thyroid function. Seaweeds are also an excellent source of calcium and potassium and are rich in all minerals. They help in the removal of radioactive and toxic heavy minerals. I am thankful to herbalist Ryan Drum for teaching me the importance of this neglected food. - Herbal Medicine, Healing and Cancer: A Comprehensive Program for Prevention and Treatmentby Donald R. Yance, j r.,C.N., M.H., A.H.G., with Arlene Valentine
Iodine - Available in seafood, sea vegetables such as kelp and dulse, and iodized salt, iodine protects against breast cancer and is needed for proper energy metabolism as well as the growth and repair of all tissues. - Alternative Medicine the Definitive Guide, Second Editionby Larry Trivieri, Jr.
Spencer of Frenahay Hospital in Bristol found that the so-called "goiter belts" (regions where goiter is extremely prevalent, due to low levels of iodine in the water and diet) had higher than average cancer rates, a finding that extended over 15 nations on four continents. According to Dr. Bernard Eskin, director of endocrinology at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Medical College of Philadelphia, iodine deficiencies are associated with breast cancer in both rats and humans. - Stopping the Clock: Longevity for the New Milleniumby Ronald Klatz and Robert Goldman
A large fraction of absorbed iodine is taken up by the thyroid gland via the sodium/iodide symporter. In addition to the thyroid gland, active iodide occurs in the salivary glands, the gastric mucosa and in the lactating mammary gland. The nonlactating mammary gland does not accumulate iodide. Recently, it has been reported that accumulation of iodide via a sodium/iodide symporter appears to occur in human breast cancer tissue. The major route of excretion of excess iodine is by the kidneys. - PDR for Nutritional Supplementsby Sheldon Saul Hendler and David Rorvik
Turning from excessive intake of a dietary factor to deficiency, the association of inadequate diet with decreased resistance to malignancies is well documented. Iodine deficiency may lead to an underactive thyroid and ultimately to a goiter, and goiters have been clearly associated with an increased risk of breast cancer. Similarly, recognizable thyroid underactivity has been demonstrated in 10 percent of the women with another type of cancer (endometrial). - Breast Cancer: A Nutritional Approachby Carlton Fredericks, Ph.D.
Both our mammary glands (breasts) and our thyroid glands have been linked from the time we were embryos and both have a special ability to store iodine. This function is vital during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Because bromide has been replacing iodide in our bread and in our breasts for the past fifty years, it is feared that this has led to an increase in both breast cancer and fibrocystic breast disease (both of which have increased dramatically over this time period). - The Natural Hormone Makeover: 10 Steps to Rejuvenate Your Health and Rediscover Your Inner Glowby Phuli Cohan
In addition to his lab work, Adams is also the (non-paid) executive director of the non-profit Consumer Wellness Center (CWC), an organization that redirects 100% of its donations receipts to grant programs that teach children and women how to grow their own food or vastly improve their nutrition. Click here to see some of the CWC success stories.
With a background in science and software technology, Adams is the original founder of the email newsletter technology company known as Arial Software. Using his technical experience combined with his love for natural health, Adams developed and deployed the content management system currently driving NaturalNews.com. He also engineered the high-level statistical algorithms that power SCIENCE.naturalnews.com, a massive research resource now featuring over 10 million scientific studies.