Guide to Iodine Supplements
Non prescription iodine pills, tablets, supplements, and liquid form potassium iodide or KI are especially helpful in preventing the thyroid from absorbing “radioactive iodine” that is released into the air following a nuclear disaster where uranium atoms split in a nuclear reactor. Taking iodine tablets and supplements (often called anti radiation pills) is especially important for pregnant women, as doing so also protects the thyroid of the fetus. These supplements are not comprehensive anti-radiation pills, but they do protect the thyroid, which is especially exposed.
Potassium iodide (whether in tablet, pill, or liquid form) blocks radioactive iodine by filling up the thyroid’s daily iodine quota, thus blocking radioactive iodine from being absorbed. Most people are advised to immediately take them as soon as there is warning of radiation contamination, before further damage can occur. If the thyroid is left without protection, it will quickly absorb radioactive iodine, which often results in thyroid cancer.
Note that iodine supplements only protect the thyroid; it cannot prevent radioactive iodine from getting into the body through inhalation (breathing) or eating contaminated food. It also does not protect the thyroid from other radioactive materials, only iodine. It cannot reverse damage.
Although iodized table salt contains iodine, it is not a substitute for iodine tablets because it does not contain enough to be able to block radioactive iodine.
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