Iodine and Prostate Health
Iodine is an element in nature, found more common in the ocean than on land. It is an essential component of the thyroid hormones that are involved in the regulation of various enzymes and metabolic processes. Thyroid hormones regulate many key biochemical reactions, especially protein synthesis and enzymatic activity. Iodine is a key nutrient required to produce sufficient amounts of hormones.
Under normal circumstances, your body contains approximately 20 to 30 mg of iodine. Two thirds of the body’s iodine is found in the thyroid gland. Major target organs are the developing brain, muscle, heart, pituitary, and kidney.
Commonly accepted medical opinion suggests that iodine’s only role in the body is to help make thyroid hormones. Observations in several areas have suggested possible additional roles for iodine. The thyroid is involved in other bodily processes like reproduction, nerve and muscle function, breakdown of proteins and fats, hair and nail growth, and the utilization of oxygen by the cells.
Dr. Guy Abraham, a leading expert on iodine and a former professor at UCLA School of Medicine has studied the role of iodine in the body and he has uncovered evidence that iodine’s benefits may go far beyond its function of making thyroid hormones. Other possible functions include:
• Helping to regulate moods
• Supporting health of the breasts, ovaries, uterus, prostate and thyroid gland
• Assisting in the regulation of blood pressure and blood sugar
• Assisting in the elimination of fluoride, bromine, lead, cadmium, arsenic, aluminum and mercury.
According to Dr. Abrahams, iodine deficiency appears to play a significant role in development of numerous degenerative diseases.
Iodate, widely used in many countries as an additive to salt, is rapidly reduced to iodide and completely absorbed. Studies report an antioxidant or scavenging effect of iodide. Researchers suggest that iodine increases the antioxidant status of human serum similar to that of vitamin C.
Natural Food Sources Sardines, brown and red seaweeds contain the most iodine (kombu, focus, etc.) of sea vegetables. Yogurt, cow’s milk, eggs, and strawberries are very good sources of iodine. Good sources include mozzarella cheese.