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What Nutrient Helps Muscles Grow Strong? Iodine

Posted by Jennifer Shipp | Aug 10, 2023


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Iodine Deficiency and Its Effects on Muscle Tissue, Heart Function, and Athletic Performance

One of the most important natural treatments for muscle weakness and pain is Lugol's iodine, but Lugol's is also extremely useful in promoting general athletic ability as well as sharp thinking and a healthy heart.
It is extremely common for patients with hypothyroidism, even sub-clinical hypothyroidism (without obvious symptoms) to have muscle weakness and muscle pain. Babies, for example, that are born with Kocher-Debre-Semelaigne syndrome / cretinism have muscle weakness or muscular hypertrophy. Though their muscles appear to be over-developed, babies with this syndrome are, in fact, very weak and they have a hard time controlling their head movements and sitting upright. This disease is most often caused by congenital iodine deficiency though exposure to bromide / bromine or fluoride / fluorine can make the problem worse. Administration of Lugol’s iodine during pregnancy and continuing after birth can sometimes reverse the symptoms of this disease.

But iodine deficiency doesn’t just impact babies or young children. In fact, iodine deficiency also impacts athletes and adults who just want to feel energized and alive when they go to the grocery store or spend time with friends. Weak muscles that are chronically achy can have a strong negative impact on one’s quality of life. So while myopathy is not often a focus of discussion when people talk about iodine supplementation, this is a symptom that deserves more attention. 

The physiology behind iodine deficiency and myopathy has been studied in terms of babies born with this nutrient deficiency. Studies have shown that babies born with Kocher-Debre-Semelaigne syndrome have elevated muscle enzyme levels. Type I muscle fibers are most often involved in the symptom picture. Muscles contain higher-than-normal amounts of interstitial connective tissue and abnormal glycogen accumulation depending on the extent and duration of the iodine deficiency. Doctors often treat this disease with thyroid hormone replacement therapy, which ultimately causes the thyroid gland to become more sluggish and less responsive to changing conditions in the body over time. Parents of babies born with this disease might also consider administering Lugol’s iodine 2% at a dose of 1 drop daily per year of the child’s age as a cure for the disease. Children who are born healthy can also benefit from taking Lugol’s iodine 2% to maintain their general immune system health, a healthy weight, a healthy metabolism, and the ability to think clearly. Indeed, there are a long list of diseases that can be avoided in children who take Lugol’s iodine daily. 

Click here to read more about the disease states and symptoms caused by iodine deficiency and bromide toxicity.

Muscle Cramps Due to Nutrient Deficiency

As I was writing this article, a football coach contacted me about muscle cramping in some of his “heavy” high school football players. A number of people in the general public are aware of the relationship between potassium and muscle cramping, but fewer people know or realize that 1) there is potassium in Lugol’s iodine and 2) iodine deficiency can lead to muscle cramping. Potassium is an interesting little nutrient in that people can use it to control atrial fibrillation naturally and other serious heart issues. Potassium can be used as a natural high blood pressure medication. And potassium can also be used as part of a protocol to cure cancer.  Potassium, after all, is in the same column of the periodic table as Cesium, Rubidium, and Lithium which means that it shares certain characteristics with these elements. All of these elements are found in soils and they can be soaked up into fruits and vegetables to make those food items more alkalizing and more nutritious in the body. Dr. Keith Brewer was a doctor who accidentally discovered that Cesium can cure cancer in 100% of rats. Click here to read more about how to use Cesium to cure cancer naturally. Indeed, alkalizing the body works quickly to cure cancer even in stage IV patients who have little time to live. A patient who can’t obtain Cesium though might use Ionic Rubidium, Lithium Orotate (the natural salt of lithium, as differentiated from synthetic drug-forms such as lithium chloride and lithium carbonate which are both toxic), and/or POTASSIUM to alkalize the body. Baking soda is usually the most easily obtained medicinal “alkalizer”, but potassium is second in line. Few people pay heed to the value of potassium in Lugol’s iodine as a nutrient that is also active in the body, particularly in muscle tissues including the heart and the muscles surrounding blood vessels. 

Click here to read more about the high pH baking soda cure for cancer. 

So we started this section discussing iodine and potassium for muscle cramps and within a paragraph, we arrived at cancer cures and cures for heart disease and high blood pressure. It may seem hard to believe that something as simple and mundane as potassium and iodine can cure these Big Diseases, but a key point that needs to be noted is the fact that potassium and iodine need to be taken at the proper therapeutic dose if a patient is sick. A multi-vitamin that contains iodine will almost invariably contain less than 1/100th or even sometimes 1/1000th of the dose needed to actually prevent deficiency let alone treat an existing deficiency. Potassium supplements are similar in that most supplements that contain only about 100 mg per dose. Most people need between 5000-10,000 mg per day though potassium is easier to get in the diet from food than iodine. A common mistake that people make is to take too little iodine or potassium to get the desired effect. Indeed, herbs and herbal supplements are often taken at doses too low for them to actually work properly. Of course it depends on the nutrient or herb in question and people have to do research to figure out the proper dose for their exact situation, but proper dosing plays a big role in curing diseases like cancer and heart disease as well as chronic muscle cramping.

Our Amazon links to products that cure disease often disappear mysteriously shortly after we publish our articles. Please click here to buy Lugol's iodine and support our non-Amazon vendors.

In this article, we’re setting forth the argument that Lugol’s iodine, which contains both iodine and potassium, plays a major role in skeletal muscle health and heart muscle health, but we also mention here, in regard to muscle cramping that Lugol’s is the cure for asthma. If we think of asthma as a dysfunction in the muscle tissues surrounding the bronchial tubes, Lugol’s iodine as a cure for this disease might make more sense. But now that you can see the connection between iodine deficiency and asthma, and now that you’ve thought about asthma as a type of muscle spasm in the bronchial tubes, it might also interest you to know that these asthma “spasms” tend to occur most often when reproductive hormone levels are in a state of change. Women who are in the middle of their menstrual cycle or at the end of their menstrual cycle, when hormone levels are changing rapidly are more likely to have asthmatic attacks and muscle cramps. Lugol’s regulates reproductive hormone levels which may play a role in myopathy and muscle cramping. 

Click here to read more about how Lugol’s iodine works as a permanent cure for asthma.

Muscle Weakness and Hypothyroidism

About 80% of adults with hypothyroidism report muscle complaints including:

  • Muscle weakness
  • Muscle fatigue
  • Muscle cramps
  • Muscle pain

The Connection Between Hypothyroidism and Muscle Pain and Weakness

Prior to the 1980s, studies were done on iodine deficiency showing that severe muscle weakness can develop when the diet lacks this crucial mineral. In one study, performed in 1978, scientists showed that rats raised on an iodine-deficient diet developed hind-leg weakness. By combining iodine supplementation with casein supplementation (to provide supportive nutrients), they were able to reverse this problem very quickly in their rats.

But starting in the 1980s, iodine was removed as a fortifying agent in the American food supply and it was replaced with a toxic halide, bromide. Iodine that had once fortified bread products was removed and put into salt, a terrible carrier for iodine (the iodine evaporates out of the salt box within days of opening it). Bromide started being used instead to “condition” commercial bread products which led to the development of bromide toxicity and health issues related to iodine deficiency combined with bromide toxicity. Bromide was put into drugs like cough syrups though potassium iodide was an actual cure for serious respiratory infection and disease and bromide worsens issues like asthma. Though bromide was once one of the leading causes of mental illness and the main culprit behind more than 15% of all psychiatric hospital admissions in the United States, this substance started being added to pharmaceuticals, soft drinks, and it suddenly replaced chlorine as the sanitizing agent in swimming pools. 

Click here to read more about the historical removal of iodine from the food supply in the 1980s.

Click here to learn more about drugs that contain bromine / bromide.

So on the one hand, there were studies in the 1970s showing that iodine deficiency could cause muscle pain and muscle weakness and on the other hand, in the 1980s there were mainstream changes in the food supply and pharmaceuticals that exacerbated iodine deficiency by compounding the problem with bromide / bromine toxicity. If you’ve read any of our other material linking iodine deficiency and bromide toxicity to other health problems like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and heart disease, thyroid disease, asthma and other lung diseases, cancer, autoimmune disease, kidney disease, urinary tract disease, cystitis, and more it isn’t hard to see how removing iodine from the food supply and replacing it with bromide created new markets and new profit potential for Big Pharma. 

Radioactive Iodine and Muscle Pain / Muscle Weakness

But what about patients who receive treatment or diagnostic tests using radioactive iodine? While the nutrient form of iodine found in Lugol’s can cure many different diseases, the radioactive form of iodine, in contrast, can cause very serious and irreversible health problems. Case studies have shown, in fact, that some patients who receive the radioactive form of iodine develop disabling myopathy / muscle disease. This isn’t surprising given that the muscles need nutrient forms of iodine in order to function properly.

Myopathy develops when muscle fibers don’t function properly. The result is muscle weakness. Weakness in muscle tissues can be differentiated from weakness of muscle tissues due to nervous system problems. 

In one case study, a 34 year old man developed inflammation in the neck that felt a bit painful and tender when touched. His doctor diagnosed him with follicular carcinoma of the thyroid gland / thyroid cancer and recommended that the thyroid gland be removed. The man was then given ablative radioiodine treatments. He immediately developed a disabling muscle weakness and myalgia / muscle pain. 

Radioactive Iodine and Heart Disease

Radioactive iodine administration has the potential to cause heart disease in patients who are otherwise without heart problems. This is especially true for patients receiving a dose of 3.7 GBq or higher. The nutrient form of iodine is vital for heart health so exposure to a radioactive form of iodine is toxic to the heart muscle. Patients who have been administered radioactive iodine who later develop heart disease, high blood pressure, or other circulatory diseases should consider supplementing with the nutrient form of iodine in Lugol’s to give the body the opportunity to repair some of the damage.

Iodine as a Nutrient That Improves Athletic Performance

Lugol’s iodine and Iodoral are at the top of the list as nutrient supplements that promote weight loss. And the iodine and potassium in Lugol’s and Iodoral work together to enhance muscle strength naturally. And iodine is well-known as a nutrient that promotes brain health. As such, this nutrient supplement can help athletes move more quickly and also think more quickly to perform better athletically. 

The AlivenHealthy Iodine Bible - Everything you need to know to get started taking iodine and more!


Rosman, N. P. et al. (1978). Muscle weakness caused by an iodine-deficient diet: investigation of a nutritional myopathy.

Price, H. C. and Jayagopal, V. (2009). Myopathy following postoperative ablative radioiodine for follicular carcinoma of the thyroid. Retrieved August 8, 2023 from

Rubin, D. I. (2023). Hypothyroid myopathy. Retrieved August 8, 2023 from
Kao, C. H. et al. (2021). Radioactive Iodine Treatment the Risk of Long-Term Cardiovascular Morbidity and Mortality in Thyroid Cancer Patients: A Nationwide Cohort Study. Retrieved August 8, 2023 from

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