Iodine: The Cause and The Cure for PCOS?

I watched a documentary recently entitled The Truth About Cancer and in Episode 5 this little piece of information came up:

Women can’t get PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) without being iodine deficient, says Dr. Daniel Nuzum.


That’s a very bold statement, but before I dismissed the documentary as uninformed I decided to research it.

Can an Iodine Deficiency Cause PCOS?

According to studies, an Iodine Deficiency may in fact be a cause of PCOS!

Dr. Jorge Flechas wrote a study claiming:

“Iodine deficiency may cause the ovaries to develop cysts , nodules and scar tissue. At its worse this ovarian pathology is very similar to that of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). As of the writing of this article I have five PCOS patients. The patients have successfully been brought under control with the use of 50 mg of iodine per day. Control with these patients meaning cysts are gone, periods every 28 days and type 2 diabetes mellitus under control.”

Jeffrey Dach, MD states:

“Iodine deficiency causes ovarian cysts and annovulation, reversed by iodine supplementation.”

There are many possible causes for PCOS, not one has been 100% proven, so take this with a grain of salt (no pun intended).

Could Iodine Cure PCOS?

So I jumped on my computer and started Googling. I read articles old and new and review after review on various supplements. Low and behold the Google results for ‘Iodine and PCOS’ were astounding- women were seeing great results using Iodine supplements or adding more natural Iodine foods to their diet.

Most of the articles and reviews I read pointed back to two books, Iodine : Why You Need It, Why You Can’t Live Without It by David Brownstein   -and-  The Iodine Crisis: What You Don’t Know About Iodine Can Wreck Your Life by Lynn Farrow. These books reiterated what I saw in the documentary that Iodine is a key factor in PCOS (among many other health issues).

Perhaps this is why a diet high in seafood is so good for those of us with PCOS. Seafood contains Iodine.

I continued my research over this last week researching and reading for hours on end about the different Iodine types, supplementation types, side effects, recommended dosage, etc. It looks very promising- but no definite answers or proof. I’m going to up my intake of Iodine containing food and start an Iodine supplement. I will update you with my results both here and on Facebook. As always I will consult with my doctor first and possibly ask him to run a test to see my current Iodine levels.

Foods Rich in Iodine

Iodine can be found in:

  • Wild caught seafood (ex: Salmon, Cod, Tuna, Shrimp)
  • Enriched Iodized table salt
  • Kelp
  • Yogurt
  • Strawberries
  • Eggs
  • Cow’s milk

See full list and Iodine amounts here

Iodine Supplements

If you look into Iodine Supplements, please consult your doctor! Too much Iodine can be problematic! You’ll want to discuss Iodine types and dosage with your doctor, as well as having your doctor monitor you while you’re on it. From what I’ve read Iodine dosage needs to be slowly increased with time.

The next step for me was choosing an Iodine supplement. Thank goodness for reviews and books. I was able to narrow down my choices to these Iodine Supplements:

  • Iodoral- Pill Supplement – This supplement is a pill with 12.5 mg of Iodine which is equivalent to 8,333% of your daily recommended value- wow!
  • J.CROW’S® Lugol’s Liquid Iodine – This is a liquid supplement with a dropper. Instructions give you specifics on how many drops (not droppers!) to take for your ailments.

Adding Iodine to Your Diet

I’m going to start adding more fish, eggs, strawberries, and small amounts of Iodized salt to my diet. Unfortunately cow’s milk is something I try to stay away from. I am also going to try an Iodine supplement, once I get my doctors approval and recommendations.


Iodine Information

I encourage you to read the articles below for further Iodine Education:


Expect updates in about 3-4 weeks, once I get a good grasp on the benefits and side effects.
Have you or are you taking Iodine?? Please let me know below!!



  1. Avatar
    Elle says:

    Hi there! Another PCOS girl here too! Wondering if taking L-glutamine helped you with cravings for sweets? I’m about to start the South Beach diet and sweets are my biggest weakness. And I’ve been seeing the same advice on every health blog lately: eliminate sugar and processed carbs from your diet! Personally, the only diet plan doctors have ever even mentioned to me for PCOS were: Low GI and South Beach. So here I go ~ Thank you!

    • Avatar
      PCOS Girl says:

      Yes it did! I also started taking Inositol and it has helped too. Once you’ve eliminated the sweets for about a week or two the cravings will slow or stop, but the second you have sugar they will ramp up ten fold. Check out Alpha Lipoic Acid as well- it should help stabilize glucose which should decrease the sugar cravings as well.

      • Avatar
        Heather says:

        HI! I stumbled upon Roderick Lane on Facebook. A naturopathic Endocrinologist who put me on a seleium/15% lugols iodine supplement and a keto diet..i keep it paleo and dairy free. Im allergic to casein. I have PCOS diabetes type 2 and Hashimotos disease. My periods had pretty much disappeared for the last few years. Since taking the iodine my periods have returned. Not that I want them to lol..but im sure its healthier for my body. I do believe the iodine is helping me. I feel better! Now..with this being said I will need to do some labs to make sure..(peace of mind) that the iodine isn’t making my TPO antibodies worse in my Hashimoto’s disease. This is what I’ve read about. That taking an iodine supplement is bad for hshimotos. So…ive been on it about a month. I will do labs next month. Curious to see whats happening to my body. I know I AM FINALLY LOSING WEIGHT!

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    Sam says:

    The cause of PCOS is still not clear but the following conditions and factors are believed to contribute to the development of this condition:

    – INSULIN RESISTANCE (It leads to high levels of INSULIN in the blood and too much insulin increases TESTOSTERON). The body’s tissues do not respond to insulin and extra insulin is produced to try to compensate. The high levels of insulin cause the ovaries to over produce testosterone. This interferes with the development of the follicles and prevents normal ovulation.
    OTHER CAUSES (which also lead to insulin resistance, hormonal imbalance and overweight): Lack of exercise, nutritional deficiencies (lack of vitamins, minerals including B-complex, magnesium, zinc, etc.), vitamin D deficiency (insufficient sun exposures), stress, anxiety, depression, toxins, lack of antioxidants in diet, consumption of meat, dairy, refined plant products, stimulants, sugar, plant oils (high in proinflamatory omega-6 fatty acids), stimulants etc.

    – AVOID FRUCTOSE as it leads to insulin resistance. However other sugars, grains and lack of exercise are also contribute to insulin resistance and must be addressed.

    In order to recover go on Hallelujah Diet and use the following:
    – ALFA LIPPOIC ACID. According to Dr Mercola: “This Antioxidant (LIPOIC ACID) can smash insulin resistance and autoimmune disease. People with diabetes or metabolic syndrome tend to do much better when taking lipoic acid, as it enhances insulin sensitivity.”

    – D-CHIRO-INOSITOL (DCI) for PCOS & INSULIN RESISTANCE (Swanson). D-chiro-Inositol (DCI) appears to have substantial beneficial effects for PCOS, an observation rationalized by the apparent role of DCI in the etiology of PCOS. In double-blind studies, women with PCOS who received DCI experienced the following statistically significant benefits when compared with a control group: lowered free and total testosterone, lowered blood pressure, increased insulin sensitivity and a corresponding improvement in glucose disposal, and increased frequency of ovulation.

    – Bio-CHROMIUM (Pharma Nord) – 10 X BETTER ABSORBTION

    Below you will find link to the entire article:

    • Avatar
      PCOS Girl says:

      I saw a small change, but I started on a low dose and am only now (after having surgery) am starting to ramp up to the recommended does of Iodoral. I’ll keep you posted!!!!

    • Avatar
      PCOS Girl says:

      It has definitely helped! Sugar cravings down, fatigue and brain fog down (but also taking Mega Magnesium for this). Saw a small weight loss- a few pounds. I’ll continue to update as I go 🙂

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    Anil says:

    Hi my wife has Pcos since long. She is taking lugols iodine since last 3 months and we can see the improve. Her pimples have vanished and she is becoming pimple free. May be she will continue for 2 to 3 months more.need to do an ultrasound to check the status of cysts

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    SusieHmMkr says:

    Just throwing this out there, but as a kid with numerous allergies I also had numerous illnesses. I’d get sick much worse than who I caught it from, tonsillitis 4 times/yr, styes, ear infections, bronchitis, etc. I was quite familiar with penicillin, for many many yrs! I’m wondering how that played into not just gut bacteria disruption, but hormones and deficiencies as well, in relation to (my) PCOS and insulin resistance. I know my mother almost had me 4-6 weeks early, though I don’t know what was done to keep me cooking in her or what her actual due date was for me. I also wonder if my dad’s severe teenage acne played a role into my hormone imbalances, as I’m 47 and have had embarrassing acne since age 11/12. Now I’m incredibly close to Menopause and while I don’t get hot flashes or night sweats (just very random warm spells, 5-6 yrs in peri-menopause now), all the other PCOS symptoms increased. The acne changed, it increased, then became more cystic, eventually less deep cystic but cystic and weird nonetheless. The hirsutism began with a few long hairs just under the chin, to two spots of over 4o hairs to pluck in 4 yrs. The thinning hair, ugh, scary!! Literally hated to shower fearing what I’d see in the drain. The periods changed, became random but had 10-11/yr, some more painful, some long, then pain the first few days of each one with an uncomfiness for days 4-6, eventually discovered my uterus is full of fibroids. My uterus is enlarged and mishaped. Have had 2 periods in the last 6 mos, both pain-free, both normal in length. I know when I’m having a hormone fluctuation. The changes…and several sudden weight gains despite a long term low carb lifestyle…not fun. I get most annoyed reading that PCOS is just a fertility issue/affects women in childbearing years. It’s a syndrome, it’s a near lifelong battle that begins in puberty whether known or not, it will change as our bodies change. Let’s strive for discovering the cause, then rally for a cure! I often wonder who else can string together a common thread…allergies, allergy shots, penicillin use, etc.

    • Avatar
      PCOS Girl says:

      Amen! Find a cure and cause! I also suffer horrible allergies! I strongly believe my PCOS came from a crazy sugar filled childhood. I didn’t take any medication as a child/teenager, but my diet was atrocious. I never played sports or worked out and was fed copious amounts of sugar and processed foods.

      • Avatar
        Lauren Rittman says:

        I was diagnosed with PCOS at age 11, had the skin tags and darkening to skin like crazy, and secretly shaved most of my body and face by age 12. My cysts would grow as big as dinner plates and soccer balls in my teen years. Now the biggest they get is tennis balls and I’ve had ruptures now.
        I too have allergies to milk, soy and most anything artificial. All my weight is in my belly area in two flaps. I lose weight everywhere except my flaps. *face palm*
        Last year I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, and literally it has changed everything! My Endocrynologist saw my ENTIRE. Endocrine system as one issue… including my ovaries which produce hormones! Having my thyroid levels under control with medication and taking hormonially enriched foods out of my diet have helped SO MUCH!
        I even went off birth control to cleanse my system and try and get things to reach a homeostasis. I got my first ever period, on my own, with out Meds for the first time in my life! (I’m now 36!)
        I love your blog and find a lot of the articles beneficial! Thank you for talking about this syndrome… which is for life, unfortunately. Also, all of my moms sisters, my mom, and several of my cousins ALL have PCOS AND thyroid issues/disease/cancer….so there must also be a hereditary issue going on as well with pcos.
        Thanks for sharing your blog and research!

  5. Avatar
    Sil says:

    Hey there!

    I love your post they’re very informative, keep up the good work we all appreciate it greatly.

    What results can one expect to see after raising your iodine level? Or taking supplements?

    After researching, I fownd this below

    “Bromine, found in lots of industrial-produced packaged food products, is of particular interest to researchers, since it’s known to block iodine-rich foods from being useful and absorbable to some degree. Bromine is able to displace iodine and might lead to higher rates of iodine deficiency.”

    It appears that our society is slowly trying to kill us, it may be best to avoid too many packaged food.

    • Avatar
      PCOS Girl says:

      I stopped the packaged food a while ago, I also went organic at the same time and my cystic acne virtually disappeared!

  6. Avatar
    Holly says:

    Any updates on iodine supplementation? I’ve had a recent flare up of my pcos symptoms and large thryroid nodule. My MD thinks I am majorly iodine deficient. My Endocrinologist thinks I’m not. Since we live in an “iodine sufficient country”.

  7. Avatar
    Sarah Summers says:

    Hi PCOS girl, you write “Too much Iodine can be problematic! ” …do you happen to know what problems it can cause in a PCOS sufferer? Thank you xxx

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