DON'T Take Potassium Iodide Unless You Are Exposed to Radiation → Washingtons Blog
DON'T Take Potassium Iodide Unless You Are Exposed to Radiation - Washingtons Blog

Sunday, March 13, 2011

DON'T Take Potassium Iodide Unless You Are Exposed to Radiation

Because of the fear that the radiation from the Japanese nuclear meltdowns will hit the Western United states (see this and this), potassium iodide has sold out in most health food and supplement stores in many California, Oregon and Washington locations.

People know that it's good to take potassium iodide to protect against radiation, to help protect against thyroid cancer (potassium iodide does not protect any other organs).

But taking potassium iodide when there is no radiation can actually damage the thyroid gland ... at least in some individuals.

For example:

Finland's radiation and nuclear safety authority STUK said in a statement ... "Iodine tablets should not be taken without recommendations from officials, because the risk of side effects is greater than the possible benefit," the authority warned.

Indeed, the New York Times notes:

Experts in Japan and the United States say the country is now facing a cascade of accumulating problems that suggest that radioactive releases of steam from the crippled plants could go on for weeks or even months.

You can't take potassium iodide for months on end.

Ideally, buy potassium iodide now, and monitor radiation levels by looking at real-time monitoring networks such as this and this. Don't take iodide unless and until elevated radiation levels hit your area.

Whatever you do, don't take more than the recommended dosage. The Centers for Disease Control and the FDA recommend:

  • 130 milligrams for adults
  • 65 milligrams for children

Each 24 hours that one is exposed to radiation.

Sees this for further details.

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or a health professional, and this should not be taken as medical advice. You should consult your doctor before making any decisions about whether or not to take potassium iodide.


  1. Would you happen to know any radiation monitoring websites for Europe? Google didn't help much. Thank you!

  2. When you look at the above links that show numbers for the USA and a couple of cities in Canada, at what # should one start being concerned and take the iodine? I haven't seen that info anywhere unless I missed it...

  3. The Japanese already consume large amounts of organic iodine in their diet including seaweed.

  4. Or, consider an alternate medical opinion from Dr. Guy Abraham, MD, from his article on orthoiodosupplementation in medical practice.

    "Of all the elements known so far to be essential for health, iodine is the most misunderstood and the most feared. Yet, it is by far the safest of all the trace elements known to be essential for human health. It is the only trace element that can be ingested safely in amounts up to 100,000 times the RDA. For example, potassium iodide has been prescribed safely to pulmonary patients in daily amounts of up to 6.0 gm/day, in large groups of such patients for several years (1-3). It is important however to emphasize that this safety record only applies to inorganic nonradioactive iodine/iodide, not to organic iodine-containing drugs and to radioiodides."

    You can check Iodoral as an iodine supplement.

  5. I should have posted a link to the article-one of many he has written on iodine and medicine.

  6. Potassium Iodine and potassium iodide are not the same. See info from the Gerson Method for more info just search "gerson potassium iodine" (note the N E ) these are nutrients that are without side effects. I know people who misunderstood that you were supposed to mix the PI with water and then use a table spoon full and were using the straight salts in a table spoon without ill effect...except that much would make your juice or whatever you were mixing it with taste terrible...

    Most people tested are deficient in iodiNE and D3...further you want iodine in your BEFORE you are exposed so that you don't take up/ absorb the radioactive form...please do just a little more research.

    Potassium IodiDE is for when you are being exposed directly to radiation or radioactive particles.

    Also read up on simple tings like seaweed (nori kelp dulse etc), miso and supplements like vitamin c and d and iodine sprays for your skin...

  7. You can buy potassium iodide online at


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