“We’re seeing that iodine, so crucial to good health, may in fact be the ultimate adaptogen,” says Nan Katherine Fuchs, PhD, in her book The Health Detective’s 456 Most Powerful Healing Secrets. (p. 32).

An adaptogen is a product that adapts to whatever is needed within the body. Specifically this means an adaptogen promotes homeostasis and stabilizes the processes of the body. It will normalize body functions.

“Iodine’s a great alkalinizing agent. It can elevate the pH. In those few patients I see with an alkalanized pH, iodine seams to lower the pH in them. Perhaps it’s more of an adaptogen for pH than an alkalinizing agent,” says Dr. David Brownstein (28:20).

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Stephanie Buist, ND, HC says in her Guide To Supplementing With Iodine, “Iodine functions as an adaptogen – meaning it ‘knows’ what does not belong and works to destroy the bad bacteria in the gut. It does not destroy the good bacteria (probiotics). Remember, this is a natural element and not a drug.”

Albert Szent Györgyi, Nobel Laureate winner for finding the powerful effects of high dose vitamin C, says, ““When I was a medical student, iodine in the form of KI (potassium iodine) was the universal medicine. Nobody knew what it did, but it did something and did something good. We students used to sum up the situation in this little rhyme: If ye don’t know where, what, and why, Prescribe ye then K and I.”

DSC02608 (1)Fuchs, Ph.D, says, “Adaptogens are substances that help normalize various bodily functions. Now we’re seeing iodine, so crucial to good health, may in fact be the ultimate adaptogen.”

Specifically she points out, “The RDA for iodine is 0.15 mg (150 mcg), but Dr. (Guy) Abraham found that when we take 50 mg of iodine/iodide a day, it acts as an adaptogen, regulating various body functions.” (pages 33, 34).

She goes on to say, “Low HCL production can be caused by iodine insufficiency. Our bodies need iodine to pump chloride into our stomach cells in order to help make hydrochloric acid.” (page 37).

The largest trouble today with iodine is the big controversy of how much is enough. The government guidelines and the guidelines from medical doctors researching the dosage effects are worlds apart. Effective clinical dosages are proving most beneficial sometimes at over 100,000 times higher than the RDA. 

This discrepancy has created a large rift in the medical community. 



The most highly documented collection of iodine effectivity can be found in Lynne Farrow’s book The Iodine Crisis and Dr. David Brownstein’s book Iodine. These two books are highly informative. An iodine protocol should not be started without the care of an iodine literate practitioner and reading both of these books.

*Nourishing Plot is written by Becky Plotner, ND, traditional naturopath, GAPS who sees clients in Rossville, Georgia. She works as a Certified GAPS Practitioner who sees clients in her office, Skype and phone. Since her son was delivered from the effects of autism (Asperger’s syndrome), ADHD, bipolar disorder/manic depression, hypoglycemia and dyslexia through food she continued her education specializing in Leaky Gut and parasitology through Duke University, finishing with distinction. This is not a news article published by a paper trying to make money. This blog is put out by a mom who sees first hand the effects of nourishing food vs food-ish items. No company pays her for writing these blogs, she considers this a form of missionary work. It is her desire to scream it from the rooftops so that others don’t suffer from the damaging effect of today’s “food”.

“GAPS™ and Gut and Psychology Syndrome™ are the trademark and copyright of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. The right of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her in accordance with the Copyright, Patent and Designs Act 1988.





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6 Responses to Iodine, A pH Adaptogen

  1. Sabrina says:

    So how does this relate with Thyroid issues such as Hashimoto’s where I’ve heard there is controversy as to whether Iodine might in fact irritate the condition further and even be a causing factor?

  2. sandi m says:

    This makes sense! I was stationed in Japan for 2 years, where iodine intake via sea vegetables is high. The Japanese people are generally very healthy and don’t face the degenerative disease that Americans do. I’m currently taking 19.5mg of iodine daily and am planning to slowly build up, possibly to the recommended 50mg, but I’m scared! It seems silly to fear something the body needs. Where does this fear come from? x)

  3. David says:

    I do not agree with supplementing iodine in this form. I supplemented iodine for several months, and it has caused me to develop SIBO which is proving very difficult to resolve. I even have evidence. I have breath test results (the method of testing for SIBO) going back several years showing no SIBO until I started and stopped supplementing iodine. While ever you keep supplementing iodine, you are unlikely to develop SIBO because the iodine kills *all* the bacteria in your small intestine, but as soon as you stop…..

    Your digestive system starts at your mouth, goes down through your throat to your stomach and through the small and large intestines. There should be bacteria in all of these places. Iodine kills them all.

    Further, my latest hair test showed my iodine levels way off the right hand side of the page, indicating that the iodine I took was not being retained.

  4. David says:

    The problem is that the iodine doctors say that because iodine is natural, it cannot do any harm. And everyone else defends that position. They will all be taking iodine for the rest of their lives so will not see SIBO.

    The telling factor really is that one drop of lugol’s solution in a glass of water is used to disinfect water. Of course if you drink it, it is going to kill the bacteria in your gut. It is possible your large intestine may miss out on the killing, as the iodine is supposed to be absorbed in the small intestine. It is not clear whether any of these iodine experts have ever considered those of us with already damaged guts.

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