The Benefits Of Iodine For Breast Health

When you think of iodine, you probably think of thyroid health. Or some Grey’s Anatomy lovers may know it best for being slathered on the skin before surgery.  While the thyroid gland unquestionably needs iodine for conversion of T4 to T3 (the active thyroid hormone), most people are not aware that it is needed by your entire body to function properly. Only about 30% of your body’s iodine is used for the thyroid gland, the rest is dispersed to the other tissues throughout your body.  

In females, iodine is greatly concentrated in breast tissue. Because of this, when iodine levels in the breasts are low, health issues may present themselves.

Are you deficient in iodine?

Unfortunately, our body does not produce iodine on its own. It must be consumed through the foods that we eat or through supplementation.  Because of this, more than 70% of the world’s population is iodine-deficient, which can cause the following:

  • Depression
  • Difficulty losing weight
  • Dry skin
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty remembering
  • Recurrent infections
  • Cold sensitivity
  • Brain fog
  • Thinning hair and nails
  • Constipation
  • Shortness of breath
  • Muscle aches
  • Joint pain

Why does breast tissue require iodine?

Breast tissue has a much greater concentration of iodine than the thyroid gland, especially in expectant or breastfeeding mothers.  You see, milk ducts are designed to draw iodine from the bloodstream and transmit it to the baby via the milk. In healthy breasts, iodine provides a host of antioxidant benefits. In cases of iodine deficiency, the breast tissue becomes more vulnerable to disease and cancer, specifically breast cancer.

Iodine & Fibrocystic Breast Disease

If you are a woman reading this, you know the importance of breast self-examination and your yearly checkup with your doctor.  By regularly doing self-exams, you can feel for lumps or cysts in the breast tissue. In recent studies, iodine supplementation has reduced indications of cysts or fibrocystic breast disease. It has also been indicated that more than half of all women who experience breast tenderness from fibrocystic breast disease had lessened symptoms once they began supplementing with iodine.

So how can you get adequate amounts of Iodine?

First and foremost, it’s pertinent to eat a well-balanced diet containing iodine-rich foods such as:

  • Shrimp
  • Yogurt
  • Navy beans
  • Strawberries
  • Potatoes
  • Cheese

I also recommend supplementing with a highly absorbable medical-grade iodine supplement, such as Advanced Iodine. Advanced Iodine contains potassium iodide coupled with the mineral selenium for optimal absorption and is a quick and easy way you can achieve optimal iodine levels for both breast and thyroid health.

As a board certified Ob/Gyn, I have more than 20 years of experience in women’s breast and hormonal health and would love to help you get on a path to natural health and wellness. For any questions or to discuss your breast and/or hormonal health, request your complimentary consultation today.

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Posted in: Breast Cancer, Cancer Prevention

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