This is a blog trying to correct some of the misinformation circulating with regard to iodine.
It is not intended as medical advice. I am not a medical professional, just someone who uses iodine as a supplement along with my family, and who has benefitted from that.
The article by Dr. W. N. Kemp, on "Iodine Deficiency
Disease"'in the Journal, October, 1947, is
May I add thereto several observations made
on the problem of iodine deficiency in both
animals and humans.
My observations of animals were
made in the Saskatchewan River basin, that is
the upper reaches of the old glacial Lake Agassiz.
My observation of the humans was made in Winnipeg
and in the Japanese Prison Camp at Angler, Ontario,
both fresh water areas, the former again in the
Agassiz Lake bottom.
Animal conditions in the Saskatchewan
River area in 1922 were as outlined by Dr. Kemp, in other Continental areas.
By 1927 the farmer had learned his
lesson the hard way and was rearing young stock to
supply his markets and power needs. I observed at
this time, that breeding stock on minute quantities
of iodide remained fatter and more well favoured than
stock which was not on iodides. Consequently in a
herd in which I was interested, I made iodides routine
in their care. It was noted that injuries such as
barbed wire cuts and collar galls on horses healed
Of particular interest was the difference in effect
on cattle, sheep, hogs and horses of an iodine free
diet. Cattle and sheep were born with goitres, hogs
were born hairless and colts died in their first three
years, usually in their first six months of a condition
known as Joint and Navel Disease. This condition in
horses was to all appearances due to an organism said
to enter through the cord of the new born foal. This
idea may have had some foundation as the occasional
foal dropped on clean pasture survived.
In this same area the years 1939-41 proved to be encephalomyelitis years.
My herd of horses seemed to have an immunity
for not until 1941 did the disease hit. Then a six
month old colt went down with it and to our surprise
recovered with a minimum of care and no medication.
The same summer a survey of the area proved no cases
of encephalomyelitis in horses on iodine routine.
I have since learned that the late R. A. McLoughry,
V.S.,of MacGregor, Man., was using iodine therapy in
his treatment of encephalomyelitis during the epidemic
years with some degree of success. His reports were
unfortunately not published due to his death.
A recent article published in the American Veterinary
Medical Journal of August, 1946, by R. D. Radeliff, V.S.
entitled "Sodium Iodine Therapy in Infectious Equine
Encephalomyelitis" reports that in his practice in
Texas he reduced the mortality rate among horses from
40 to 10% with no "dummies". He uses sodium iodide
intravenously,while Dr. R. A. McLoughry used potassium
Observations made at Angler, Ont. on Japanese P.O.W.'s and guards alike were made following the introduction of potassium iodide to their drinking water in amounts calculated to double the amount available in iodized salt. I may here add that in my opinion
iodized salt is readily depleted of its iodine when left
in storage. Notations made here were, a general increasein
body weight and a remarkable absence of skin infections
in spite of the Japanese practice of burning the
skin with numerous mounds of leaf pith, as a counter
It was also noted by the dental officer that
upper respiratory infections in this camp were practically
nil, while he averaged three patients a day with upper
respiratory infections in a camp of German P.O.W. 's
who were living under identical conditions but without
During the five months of observations
we had three cases of influenza in the Angler Camp.
Observations made in Winnipeg showed that in 8
cases of mastoid involvement, in one month in the
Winnipeg General Hospital, none had used iodized salt
in the home; and secondly of 18 cases of polio in 1942
9 families did not use iodized salt, 5 did and 4 were
uncertain about salt used.
It is evident that because of the minute quantity of
iodine employed in cases cited that its medical value is
nil. It is my theory therefore that in some way the
iodine ion acts as a catalyst upon the normal defence
mechanism of the body, to increase the phagocytic
properties of the leukocytes or to act as an opsonin. It
is of interest to note that Dr. R. D. Radeliff in his article
came to a similar conclusion.
1. Minute quantities of iodine in the diet of pregnant
dams prevent goitre in lambs and calves, hairlessness
in new born pigs and joint and navel disease, apparently
a septicemic condition in colts.
2.Minute quantities of iodine in the diet of humans
prevent stillbirth, adds weight, promotes wound healing and
prevents skin infections.
3.Intravenous iodine will reduce the mortality rate
in encephalomyelitis in horses and in the diet appears
to prevent the same disease.
4. Iodized salt when long in storage is depleted of
its iodine content.
5. Iodine ions in the body act as a catalyst upon the
normal defence mechanisms.
6. Further experimental observations should prove of