Can iodine help with thyroid nodules and goiter? This is a common question I will answer today. Let me tell you about a patient who had thyroid nodules that were completely resolved over 18 months. I’m Dr. Tom Rofrano from the Natural Medicine Clinic in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. I have seen over 100,000 patient visits over the last 35 years. Many of those have gut and thyroid issues including nodules and Hashimoto’s.
I recently saw a 69-year-old female with thyroid nodules and Hashimoto’s who had been on medication over 10 years and was feeling miserable. She suffered from the usual thyroid symptoms of fatigue, weight gain, aches and pains, brain fog, and digestive issues. In the initial evaluation, I typically look for underlying root causes including these five main areas: deficiencies, toxins, infections, hormones, and food reactions.
The Debate—Is Iodine Helpful or Hurtful for Thyroid
One thing we found with her was low iodine. Our treatment protocol often involves diet adjustments and supplements. The decision whether to treat with iodine is a complex issue because many doctors do not advise it at all for thyroid issues. In fact, some recommend restricting it. Others will advise that iodine is important for your thyroid. So which is it?
The truth is that not one size fits all. If you have thyroid issues, whether goiter, nodules, Hashimoto’s or are hypothyroid, you need to be working with your healthcare provider. They should check your iodine levels, and if yours is low, then a supplement may be very helpful.
Your levels should be monitored as we did with her over several months. We checked her TSH, free T4, free T3, TPO antibodies, and thyroglobulin antibodies along with other markers. These are the minimum indicators that should be checked every few months while on iodine. She did very well and all these numbers (TSH, low T4, low T3) improved. Her elevated thyroglobulin antibodies also returned to normal.
On The Road To Recovery—Supplements Helpful for Thyroid
All this improvement occurred while taking a relatively high dose of 12.5 milligrams of iodine which is in our iodine formula. We saw this improvement with her even though many doctors would not give iodine under these circumstances or any similar thyroid circumstances. For most of the cases I see with nodules and goiter we use iodine and see improvement. There is a small percentage of patients for whom iodine doesn’t do well. In that case, you make the decision to stop that and try another approach.
So using iodine can be helpful as it was with this individual. She had two thyroid nodules, one resolved over six months and the other in 18 months. Both thyroid nodules were completely gone in 18 months. One was slightly under a centimeter. The other was much larger.
For this patient we used selenium in addition to the iodine. It’s important to take selenium when you take iodine so the thyroid can use it properly. If someone is low on iron (she was not) they are unable to utilize iodine properly in the thyroid. Your physician needs to assess that for you.
Other supplements I use if needed are vitamin C, B12 folic acid and zinc. I did use these with this patient. N-Acetyl Cysteine can also be very helpful. We generally start with the functional five though, which is multivitamin, fish oil, vitamin D with K2, magnesium, and probiotics. Those are the five most important nutrients. I call them the Functional Five™ because they are the foundation that most people would benefit from. Beyond that, diet is very important.
The FreeDiet® for Gut and Thyroid Issues
As in this patient, almost everyone I see with thyroid nodules, Hashimoto’s and gut issues is gluten sensitive and has other food sensitivities. We put her on the FreeDiet® which is not only free of gluten, but gluten, grains, sugar, yeast, dairy, eggs, soy, legumes, nightshades, and processed foods. These foods are most commonly responsible for inflammation, and other chronic health issues.
If you would like a copy of the FreeDiet phase 1 food chart you can click here and we’ll send that off to you. If you would like further information on what we just talked about, I have a chapter on thyroid nodules in my book, The FreeDiet® which you can click on to see more about it.
So if you have goiter, nodules, auto-immune thyroid issues, Hashimoto’s, it’s not a standalone thing. There are things happening in your body. At one time you were normal and healthy and then suddenly, or gradually you’re not. Something over time has caused the change.
The important thing is to realize that your body has a tremendous ability to heal itself. Once you find the underlying root cause and provide the proper solutions, I believe most everyone can get better.