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Thursday, July 19, 2012

29: From My Readers — Part I

I ran into a fellow the other day who said he’d been reading my articles. Because he was suffering with some health issues, I asked him what he thought about what I’ve said in my column regarding iodine. He said he was a skeptic and preferred a more balanced approach.

It was not difficult to figure out what he was getting at. “I suppose,” I said, “that given how much I’ve talked about iodine, my readers might assume that that is the only supplement I take. Nothing could be farther from the truth. I take a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals.” I went on to tell him that I intend, sometime soon, to write about all the other things I take, and I certainly do intend to; but I keep getting sideswiped by more interesting press on the subject of—you guessed it—iodine.

I’ve had a number of comments from readers on my blog recently, and I want to share some of these. A woman named Leila read my article “So You Think You Need Iodine – Part I” and commented as follows:

“Excellent article! I had some thoughts as I read it: Edmonton is also in a known goiter area."

She shares this link: (

Then she continues: "I live in Edmonton, and almost everyone I talk to seems to have a thyroid issue. I had surgery for a nodule several years ago. I started on a very low dose of iodine last summer, less than 0.5 mg/day, and ramped it up very slowly so as not to overwhelm my thyroid. I doubled the dose no oftener than once a month.... Because 2% Lugol’s has 2.5 mg/drop, which I thought would be too big a jump for me, I also bought Naka drops—it tastes terrible! I ended up back on kelp tabs although they’re not recommended at doses over 1 mg. I’m now using Lugol’s, and I have to say, it’s a whole lot easier to take—way less drops to get the right dose and no taste at all in OJ or other juice. My GP, when asked if I could get a urine test to measure my iodine levels, said ‘There’s iodine in salt so you’re getting enough.’ Sigh.”

Leila then asked me for information on where to get the iodine test done.

I checked out the link she included. It took me to an article published in 1960. The article is 100 pages long (and does not have a search function) so I only read a fraction of it, but it was really interesting. The most dramatic statistics I saw concerned Winnipeg, which at that time had a goitre rate of 50% in the general population, and the nearby towns of Birds Hill and Stonewall, in which a staggering 85% of children were sufferers. And this was 30 years after the government began adding iodine to salt.

A little closer to home is the following information:

“In Alberta ... a great deal of goitre [has been seen] in a strip of territory running due south from Edmonton to the northern border of the [US]. Places affected are: Leduc, Wetaskiwin, ...” and it goes on to list a string of cities further south. The same article tells me there is low iodine “in the neighbourhood of the Arrow Lakes,” where I lived for the first 18 years of my life. The Kamloops area, where I lived from age 20-25 is another deficient area, and now I’ve lived in this “goitre belt” south of Edmonton for almost 30 years. Not surprising, then, that I’ve turned out to be so thirsty for this element.

(Just to clarify: Goitre is an enlarged thyroid, which is generally caused by insufficient iodine in the diet. Therefore, a “goitre” area is synonymous with an “iodine deficient” area.)

Leila also commented on my article “Burzynski’s Battle,” about the doctor in Texas who has had such astonishing success in treating “untreatable” cancers and yet has been black-balled by the FDA and large pharmaceutical interests:

“Incredible!! Sounds very much like the story of Dr. David Derry in BC. He had an excellent record of treating thyroid patients and had patients visiting him from all over the world. An endocrinologist whose patient had left him and gotten better on Dr. Derry’s treatment complained to the BC College of Physicians & Surgeons; a hearing was scheduled and he was given a week to prepare for it. The evidence he presented was rejected and they removed his thyroid prescribing privileges. When he appealed the ban the following year, his license to practice medicine was suspended. He’s not currently listed as a member of the college on their website—crazy!”

Crazy indeed. With a treatment consisting of natural, desiccated thyroid and iodine, he must have enraged Big Fat Pharma, and that is a crime that does not go unpunished.

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