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Iodine Research

Resource Network of The Iodine Movement


The Iodized Salt Scam, a Three Part Deception

                         By Lynne Farrow

Author of The Iodine Crisis: What You Don’t Know About Iodine Can Wreck Your Life

Do you get enough iodine from your iodized salt? Does your iodized
salt contain any iodine at all?

We have an iodine crisis in good part because of the iodized salt
scam. The outdated government recommendation (RDA) states that
an adequate amount of iodine can be consumed from less than the
250 mcg supposedly contained in a half teaspoon of iodized salt. But
they never factored in current bromide pollution purges iodine.  

They never factored in that iodine “evaporates” from salt containers.
Or that the form of iodine in salt doesn’t absorb well. The myth that
you can get enough iodine from iodized salt has now been debunked
by scientists.

So, how much iodine do you absorb from iodized salt?
No one really knows, because misleading information has created a
three-part information scam.  Whistle-blowers must challenge the
current government iodine guidelines because they’re based on
inaccurate information and disproved assumptions that are harmful.
The report, Iodine Nutrition: Iodine Content of US Salt by Dasgupta et
al, discusses the “Iodine Gap.”

The gap refers to the amount of iodine that’s supposed to be in iodized
salt and what amount can actually be measured by the time you use it.
The researchers also point out that salt is a poor food product to
fortify because chloride which is a halogen, competes with the iodine,
making it less effective.

       Scam 1. The average gram of iodized salt is thought to contain
0.075 mcg. But that measurement is taken at the factory. By the time
the salt reaches the grocery store half of the iodine in the sealed
container has “vaporized,” or as scientists would say, the salt
“sublimed” into the air. Once you get the salt container to your kitchen
and open it, whoosh, more iodine escapes. The longer you keep it, the
less iodine remains. Iodine in salt is unstable. Dasgupta et al. report it
takes between 20 and 40 days for an opened container of iodized salt
to lose half of its iodine.  How long have you had that iodized salt in
your pantry?

So when you factor in the loss of iodine into the air, the actual
consumption of iodine through salt is completely theoretical, and the
figure based on the factory number, the amount the people at Morton
add to the product, is not what we actually get when we sprinkle
iodized salt on our food.  Do the math. The bottom line is, nobody
knows how much iodine you get from iodized salt. There are too many
variables. Was the salt warehoused? Do you live in a damp or warm
area? How long has it been in your cupboard leaking iodine fumes into
the universe?

        Scam 2.  But say you’re an average man, standing outside the
Morton factory and get the freshest, most iodized salt available. What
are you getting? Even the most concentrated iodized salt is only 10
percent “bioavailable,” meaning only a fraction gets absorbed.  Iodide
may be added to salt but remember, salt is sodium chloride. Chloride
and iodide are both in the halogen family of elements so they compete
with each other for the same receptors. Chloride has the ability to
cancel out at least some of the benefit of iodide.

Again, do the math. You’re only absorbing 10 percent of whatever the
good people at Morton put in the container.  Unlike adding iodine to
flour as potassium iodate, the iodine in salt is difficult to absorb. You
certainly may get some iodine from iodized salt but what goes in doesn’
t necessarily get to the right places.

        Scam 3.  But say you’re a woman standing outside the factory
and get the freshest salt which is only 10 percent bioavailable, you’re
might get a protective amount, right?  A protective amount if, say, if
you consumed a pound a day?

No.  Not if you’re a woman. The salt is iodized with potassium iodide
which may be helpful to the thyroid. But the breasts and ovaries need
iodine as well as iodide. This time, you can skip the math and just go
straight to the science. Women are taking the wrong iodine.

Is there ever any reason to consume processed iodized salts in this
time of Iodine Crisis?

The answer is:

    1. Only in an emergency when you need salt and can’t access
    unprocessed salt.

    2. Only if you can’t afford iodine supplementation.
    Taking iodized salt alone as a source of iodine actually only
    benefits communities too poor to get any other kind of iodine. In
    the US, iodizing salt was meant to prevent goiter but nothing else.
    The minimal iodized salt standard, is in fact, the “Goiter
    Standard,” but does not reflect the needs of the other organs. The
    Goiter Standard of iodine provides a disappointingly low bar for
    the government to set when iodine helps prevent so many other

Skimping on the cheap cost of iodine supplementation means paying
for more expensive problems down the line.  Another thing to
remember is that processed salts often come with controversial
aluminum anti-caking chemicals. I wouldn’t take aluminum-laced
processed salt products unless I had a lot of cash socked away for
future Alzheimer’s care!

Unprocessed sea salt in the form of Celtic salt is an excellent salt with
many nutrients. The Real Salt brand as well as Redmond Salt are
available most everywhere. *But additional iodine supplementation is

This article was inspired by The Iodine Crisis: What You Don’t Know About
Iodine Can Wreck Your Life
by Lynne Farrow available from Amazon.

Copyright  2013 by Lynne Farrow.
Contact: for further information.
News:  Debunking "Iodized" Salt


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