Leading Research Questions
Is Lugol’s effective against food poisoning? What are the pros and cons of using Lugol’s for the purpose of reducing salmonella in stomach?
Taken internally, Lugol’s may help restore immunity caused by iodine-deficiency in the thyroid. In cases of occasional food poisoning or ingestion of contaminated food, Lugol’s may help create a normal internal environment in the stomach that is inhospitable to harmful bacteria that cause gas, bloating, heartburn, indigestion, diarrhea and vomiting.
Lugol’s Iodine was first developed by the French physician, Jean Lugol, in 1829. It was a transparent brown liquid consisting of 10 parts potassium iodine to 5 parts iodine to 85 parts of distilled water. Lugol’s proved an effective bactericide and fungicide and, in fact, was, for the better part of a century, a common antiseptic. Historically speaking, Lugol’s has long been traditionally used to soothe the discomfort of upset stomach due to food poisoning. This use of Lugol’s has thus far not been confirmed by scientific testing.
Traditional Use and Dr. Clark’s Theory
There are many traditional uses of Lugol’s, including taking 6 drops of 4% iodine solution in a ¼ glass of water, then repeating that up to 4 times per day. We have numerous reports that this method stops both diarrhea and throwing up within 3 to 5 minutes of taking the first dose.
Dr. Clark was an avid user of Lugol’s. She claims that it is so effective in killing Salmonella bacteria because the overgrowth of Salmonella is concentrated in the top region of the stomach, near the esophagus. “It floats on top and triggers the body to throw up as it putrefies and expands,” she claimed. Drinking a glass of water containing a prescribed number of drops of Lugol’s will therefore immediately kill much of the Salmonella the moment it enters the stomach.
Overgrowth of Salmonella concentrated in the top region of the stomach, near the esophagus, are easily killed with Lugol’s.
Pros and Cons of using Lugol’s
Many organs in the body require iodine to function normally, especially breast tissue. Recent studies have confirmed an increase in abnormal breast tissue since many commercial bakers eliminated iodine from bread approximately 20 years ago and replaced it with bromine. Excessive bromine is toxic to the thyroid gland as well.
Iodine is necessary for the thyroid gland’s proper performance of its work. The human thyroid gland is located in the front of the lower part of the neck. All the blood in the body passes through the thyroid gland every 17 minutes. Because the cells making up this gland have an affinity for iodine, during this 17-minute passage the gland’s secretion of iodine kills weak microorganisms that may have gained entry into the blood through an injury to the skin, the lining of the nose or throat, or through absorption of food from the digestive tract. Strong, microorganisms are rendered weaker during their passage through the thyroid gland. With each 17 minutes that rolls around they are made still weaker until finally they are killed if the gland has its normal supply of iodine. If it does not, it cannot kill harmful microorganisms circulating in the blood as Nature intended it should.
It is well established that the iodine content of the thyroid gland is dependent upon the iodine available in the food and water intake of the individual. If the iodine intake is low the gland is deprived of an element it needs to do its work.
Safety Evidence of Iodine
Previous deficiency of iodine can cause hypersensitivity. Although toxic effects are not observed in humans until daily intakes have exceeded 10,000 mcg, intakes of 2,000 mcg should be regarded as excessive and potentially harmful (Hetzel and Clugston 1999). Residents of coastal regions in some areas of Japan have chronic daily intakes of iodine as high as 50,000 to 80,000 mcg. Persons who have not been conditioned by iodine deficiency can maintain normal thyroid size and function when they are consuming several milligrams of dietary iodine per day, but previous deficiency can cause hypersensitivity (Hetzel and Clugston 1999). In such situations, hyperthyroidism and iodine-induced thyroiditis may occur when intakes exceed approximately 200 to 300 mcg per day.