The function of your thyroid gland is to take dietary or supplemental iodine from your bloodstream and make thyroid hormones. The names of the thyroid hormones reflect the number of iodine molecules attached – T3 (triiodothyronine) has three iodine molecules attached and T4 (thyroxine) has four.  Thyroid hormones control heart rate, temperature, metabolism, glucose consumption, cortisol (stress hormone) regulation, and immune function.

As it is with all hormones, when looking at your body holistically, at the cellular level—disruption of one group of hormonesalways affects every other group of hormones. Your body is miraculously designed to always protect you, maintain homeostasis, and keep you alive. Your body never works against you.  From a natural, holistic, cellular level approach to healing, iodine is found in every single one of your hundred trillion cells. One could conclude then, that the element iodine is essential to life.

This is not a new concept. Natural healers have known this since the beginning of time. Early studies in the 1900s proved that iodine reversed goiter. (Dr. David Marine gave iodine to 2000 schoolgirls over a 2 ½ year period with notable success). This study was the reason the U.S. began to iodize salt. Supplemental iodine was added to bread—each slice contained about 100 micrograms of iodine.

Then came the infamous “Wolff-Chaikoff” study (detailed previously); with incorrect, unsubstantiated, unreplicated data that iodine caused goiter in lab rats. Thus began the removal of iodine from bread and salt and the replacement of iodine with bromine.

BROMINE is one of THEE most toxic, cancer- causing substances on the planet. BROMINE forces iodine from your body by a process called competitive inhibition.

So let’s talk about the evil step-brothers of iodine. Iodine is a member of the halogen family.  Bromine, Chlorine, and Flourine are all in competition for iodine receptors in your body. Iodine, in its elemental form, taken up by the thyroid and deposited in the many bodily receptors, is first used to detoxify your body of the other harmful halogens. However, you MUST have enough iodine initially to both support thyroid function, and fill those receptors. You must get the necessary elemental mineral salts in those endocrine system receptor sites so you don’t absorb the lower quality halogens bromine, chlorine, flouride or radioactive iodine, that compete for receptor sites and force iodine out of the body—replacing the necessary mineral with the cancer causing toxins.

This is why the radioactive fallout from Chernobyl and Fukushima (previously stated) is so harmful.  Radiation from medical procedures is harmful as well. Chlorinated water and fluoridated water is harmful. All of these halogens force iodine out of the body and fill receptor sites with toxic cancer causing substances. Perchlorate from rocket fuel, fireworks, flares, bleach, explosives, & fertilizer– displaces iodine at a ratio of one perchlorate atom displacing 100 iodine atoms. Ethylene dibromide from chemtrails forces out iodine as well.

According to Dr. Cousens: your skin holds 400 milligrams of iodine–so you can understand why the halogens are so quickly absorbed by your body. The breasts, by the way hold 200 milligrams; the thyroid 50 milligrams.

Natural, elemental salts are endothermic and draw heat (aka inflammation) out of the body and combine with water to re-hydrate the intestines, tissues, and glands.  Radioactive substances burn internally, dehydrate, and cause oxidative stress and inflammation.

Bromine, the most toxic, chemical, iodine depleting substance in the world, is such an insidious part of our environment that most people have no clue how much they are exposed to, and take in, on a daily basis.

Sources of Bromine:

  • Methyl Bromide—a pesticide used on strawberries
  • Potassium Bromate—a dough conditioner found in commercial bakery products, some flours, and bread
  • Brominated Vegetable Oil (BVO) –added to citrus drinks; Mountain Dew being the worst—also in red Gatorade
  • Plastic parts used to make computers
  • Medications—like Atrovent Inhaler, Nasal Spray; Pro-Banthine, anesthesia
  • Fire retardants used in infant and children pajamas, mattress pads, mattresses, carpets, upholstery
  • Hot tub and pool cleaners
  • In addition to bromine–Fluoride in water and toothpaste—ever wonder why you aren’t supposed to swallow it? Flourine is used in chemical warfare and dissolves bones & teeth
  • Triclosan—chemical found in anti-bacterial soap, body wash, toothpaste, cosmetics, toys, kitchen items

You have to feel sorry for iodine, don’t you?  Those are some wicked step-brothers.  Is it any wonder why we are iodine deficient?

Iodine protects and prevents against breast and other cancers. If you have read my blog before, you know that when the body can’t immediately eliminate toxins, it does one of two things. Incoming pathogens are surrounded by lymph tissue (like tonsils and adenoids) and internal toxins are stored in fat until they can be eliminated. Cancer causing halogens are forced out of these tissues and glands by iodine sufficiency and saturation. Without enough iodine, the halogens deposit themselves and take up residence causing inflammation, cysts, and cancer. Flouride in particular, accumulates in the thyroid and pineal glands. The pineal gland produces the hormones serotonin and melatonin. Flouride interferes with the secretion of melatonin, causing calcium deposits in the pineal gland.

According to Dr. Gabriel Cousens: citing a study in the International Journal of Radiation Biology, Vol. 86, No.12, December 2010, pp.1106-1116—Cordless phones, cell phones, and the “smart meters” used by utility companies with 900MHz pulsed radiation cause hypothyroidism.

Radioactive isotopes from any source are a major problem. According to Dr. Cousens; Dr. Alice Stewart studied women exposed to diagnostic X-rays during their pregnancies. She found that their babies were two times more likely to develop leukemia than babies who had not been exposed while in the uterus; and if the babies were exposed to X-rays in the first three months of pregnancy, they were twelve times more likely to develop childhood leukemia. If an infant is exposed to radioactive elements like strontium-90, the radioactive particles accumulate in the bone marrow and disrupt the developing immune system. Strontium-90 has a radioactive lifetime of 560 years—that means they continue to give off radiation for a long time as they decay.  This causes damage on so many levels; even to the point of death.  In the eight months after the Chernobyl Disaster,   newborns in the U.S decreased by 60,000.  Massachusetts had the highest increase in infant mortality rates with an increase of 900% for each thousand live births.  This also happens in war torn areas where plutonium-239 was used. Again, these toxins remain in the soil forever—well– 500,000 years for plutonium.  (this information is from my textbook, “Conscious Eating” by Dr. Cousens, and my personal notes from naturopathy school).


So how do we protect ourselves from radiation and the wicked step-brothers of iodine?  Let’s all say my favorite mantra—you do read my blog right?

“Pull out the poison, feed the body, and God will heal.”  Burton Goldberg


It goes without saying that most of us are iodine deficient. To remedy that we need to make sure that enough natural mineral rich iodine is “taken up” to saturate the cells, tissues, and glands. By doing this, we prevent the lesser, toxic halogens from being absorbed and displacing iodine. As you can see from my notes, I like Kelp. I have been taking Kelp for years without any ill effects.  You have to be careful with iodine supplements.  There are many really good resources and qualified iodine specialists listed in “The Iodine Crisis” by Lynne Farrow, as well as websites and people to answer questions. Dr. Cousens and the Tree of Life Center have lots of resources as well.  Start where you are.  Find a doctor that will work with you.

Beets are a really great blood and liver detoxifier—specifically raw organic beet juice. Beets are high in iron and have been successfully used for years to prevent and reverse radiation caused cancers and leukemia. I make apple, lemon, beet, wheatgrass juice almost every day. I am a huge fan of fresh organic juices. And I am Blessed to call Jay Kordich aka “The Juice Man” my mentor and friend. He is my juice expert and so knowledgeable about  individual nutrients and juice combinations. You can read my blog post he wrote for me, or check out his facebook page or website and ask him questions. I love people who are accessible to help share their knowledge and I love people who radiate genuine kindness. Jay does both.

Switch to Sea Salt or Pink Himalayan Salt.  Remember: YOUR BODY NEEDS THE MAJOR MINERALS FOUND IN SEA SALT. Elemental sodium (Na), Potassium (K) and Magnesium (Mg) are critical for cellular function.  Sodium regulates your heartbeat.  These salts combined with water hydrate your tissues, and glands providing moisture and lubrication. This is why with hypothyroidism you have dry skin, dry eyes, brittle nails, course hair. The halogen family members and radioactive iodine do the opposite –they burn you internally as they decompose; causing inflammation, dehydration, oxidative stress (fire rips through your oxygen stores)  and eventual cell death.

It  also goes without saying that foods rich in chlorophyll protect against radiation, raise your pH, and build healthy red blood cells. Any green leafy foods will help—I like wheatgrass—but liquid chlorophyll is great too—I take Dr. Robert Young’s pH Miracle Greens (Supergreens) every day.

In order to “pull out the poison”—one very effective strategy is called chelation. Chelation involves certain foods or products that actively draw radioactive toxins to them, bind them up and eliminate them via the bowel or in some cases, the skin. Sodium alginate sea vegetables like my favorite—Kelp, bind radioactive metals and prevent them from being absorbed in the body.

I have mentioned liquid Zeolites several times before. Zeolites have been used for years to bind and clean up radioactive waste. Zeolite is safe and easy to take—a few drops in water or juice with no bad taste and no side effects. Dr. Cousens believes this is one of the best products for chelation.

Protecting your thyroid and every other cell in your body can make such a difference in your quality of life,  your protection against and recovery from cancer, and so many other chronic issues that I encourage you to use this information as a starting point. Don’t take my word for it. The best research is that which is conducted with your own eyes in your own time.



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Thomasina Copenhaver
Thomasina Copenhaver is a naturopathic doctor and registered nurse with over 30 years experience in the healthcare profession. Her passion is writing, researching, and empowering all humans with knowledge of healing at the cellular level; to enable them to make educated and informed choices regarding their health. For more information visit her website: or to buy her book, "Notes from a Naturopath" visit Amazon or Barnes and Noble.