These are the products I’m currently taking, and affiliate links to them. Keep in mind your requirements will likely vary, and anything you take should be under the guidance of a qualified medical doctor.

 

Iodine Protocol Support:

1.  J.CROW’S® Lugol’s 2% Iodine solution

This is by far the cheapest “medicine” I’ve ever purchased. The amount above will probably last most people between 1 and 5 years, if taking conservative doses.

2.  Selenium Complex

Selenium is an essential co-nutrient with iodine. Chris Kresser recommends this kind because it’s a blend of a few types. I only take 1/2 capsule daily (about 100 mcg) because I get plenty of selenium from meat sources. Too much selenium is just as bad as not enough. We need no more than 200 mcg daily to protect the thyroid, and it’s especially important during an iodine protocol at doses above the RDA of 150 mcg.

3.  Magnesium Glycinate

I switched to this form after reading magnesium citrate may place a burden on kidneys in some people. While I don’t have kidney disease, I have read glycinate is easily-assimilated, and I tolerate it well.

4.  B-Complex

My chiropractor recommends this brand. I’ve noticed the further I go with my iodine protocol the more of an effect B vitamins are having – good energy and mood support.

5.  Vitamin C

Quite possibly the most important companion nutrient to iodine besides selenium. I’m finding it really helps give me an energy boost, and this could be due to its ability to lower inflammation, including in the thyroid. I take about 4,000 mg a day.

6.  Potassium (as “Nosalt”)

Be very sparing. I am only taking about 1/8 tsp per day total, in divided doses. Too much potassium in supplement form can be hard for kidneys to process and should be avoided in anyone with renal issues. We normally get a lot in foods, but my diet doesn’t contain enough of these: bananas, oranges, beans, apricots, yogurt and fish – which are good sources.

Potassium has been especially important to me whenever my detox has included diarrhea and resulting electrolyte loss. My signal I was low included muscle cramps and rigidity, especially in my legs. I also feel less relaxed and get palpitations if my potassium is really depleted.

7.  Boron

I recently started taking this when I read it helps with both fluoride detox and candida overgrowth. If you choose to do so, make sure you consult your doctor. The dose I’m on is 6 mg per day, and I will take frequent multi-day holidays.

Even cheaper is 20 Mule Team Borax, which many people swear by, but having done a lot of reading on this, quite a few trusted sources consider it toxic when ingested. Even if the skeptics are wrong, I can’t recommend anyone take Borax when inexpensive boron (in measured small doses) is available.

8. Fish Oil

This is another anti-inflammatory that I feel should help protect the thyroid. Curiously, I don’t tolerate seafood, but I can take this fish oil with no difficulties. I take between 2 and 4 capsules daily.

 

GI Support:

1. Home-brewed Kefir

This is so easy to make, and full of trillions of good bacteria and yeasts. Here’s a post where I discuss the benefits, and how to make it. Just set it on your kitchen counter – overnight or for a couple days – depending on how strong  you like it. Longer ferments contain more healthy flora. Some studies have found kefir to have a near 100% success rate when used in conjunction with antibiotics for c. diff, a life-threatening gut infection.

Besides “grains”, which are the perpetual kefir culture, a mason jar (covered with a paper towel so it can breathe), and good whole milk, the only other tool you’ll need is a plastic strainer, to catch the grains after each batch and return them to the fermentation jar. Ideal temperature: 75F (24C).

2. Raw, Organic Sauerkraut. Make your own.

If you have an hour or so, sea salt and several heads of organic cabbage, plus a good container to pack it in, this is all you need to make your own ‘kraut. Here’s a video from Fermentation Wizard, Sandor Katz, that gives simple instructions.

3. VSL#3

This is a good quality probiotic that has been studied and shown effective with IBD. I take just a few capsules a week, to augment what I get from my kefir and sauerkraut.

4. Miyarisan Tablets

A Japanese probiotic that generates its own butyrate. C. Butyricum is the active strain, and this soil-based organism kills C. diff, so you’ll definitely want to keep it in your gut. Butyrate has been studied extensively and provides anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory effects.

5. Sodium Butyrate

If you ever have a flare of ulcerative colitis, this could come in very handy. My GI doctor supports the use of SB in retention enemas. I put 4 capsules in about 4 oz of distilled water, and use an emptied and rinsed Fleet enema bottle to get it into my colon.

6.  Gymnema Sylvestre

This is a really interesting antifungal because it weakens candida, morphing it back into its benign yeast-cells from aggressive hyphal overgrowth. It’s best to take it in combo with another antifungal that kills the yeast (something simple like peppermint or oregano oil) if you want to wipe it out. Peppermint can be used regularly; take holidays from oregano oil – two weeks on, two weeks off.

7. FOS – A Prebiotic (to feed healthy bacteria)

The healthier my gut becomes the more I like this resistant fiber, and combining it with resistant starches like cold potatoes and white rice could be especially healthy. I add a small scoop of FOS to my daily kefir. A little goes a long way, so start very sparingly and don’t take it on consecutive days until you know how your body handles it.

8. Raw Potato Starch (a Resistant Starch prebiotic)

Again, less is more. I started with 1/8 tsp every other day and have never needed to take more. A small, inexpensive bag lasts for months and has one of the best reputations for boosting bifido bacteria in the colon, generating anti-inflammatory butyrate and other benefits.

9. Diatomaceous Earth (Food Grade Only)

After feeling reluctant to try this, even though I had been reading good things for years, I recently started using DE, which is basically calcium carbonate. Fossilized remains of extremely small diatoms. Too much can be abrasive, so I take about 1/4 teaspoon twice per week, and find it helps a lot with gut motility. Proponents claim DE is a powerful antifungal, and perhaps it is, but any time gut transport is improved, candida and the SIBO and constipation it causes, will get better.

 

Equipment:

1.  Home Water Distiller

This is not cheap, but mine has probably paid for itself a few times over. All my drinking water is distilled, to which I add a small amount of trace minerals. This way I know I’m not ingesting fluoride and other toxins from the city water supply. Even rural well-water can have impurities that are naturally occurring or man-made.

2. Posture Pump 1000

This device is something I use a few times a week, to encourage healthy curvature of my cervical spine, again recommended by my chiropractor. Most of us hunch over laptops and smart phones, which bends our necks in the opposite direction nature intended.

Anyone who sits in front of a computer for a living should do movements every 40 minutes or so, to pump synovial fluid into the neck vertebrae, or they will begin to calcify (as mine did) and impair nerve function.

I’m finding the posture pump helps with overall mobility and can activate my vagal nerve, when I’m having issues with autonomic neuropathy. A few seconds after I begin inflating the air-cell under my neck, I feel my gut start to move and my blood pressure drops. Relaxation comes from activating the parasympathetic nervous system. This same technique also helps to reduce pain in my gut during an ulcerative colitis flare, which hardly happens anymore, I’m happy to say. 🙂

3.  emWave2

This is a device i used when my POTS was at its worst. It’s a biofeedback unit that gives subtle signals to help train us how to regulate breathing and heart rate. I’ve tried other products that were supposed to do the same thing, and they increased my awareness of my heart (not something I wanted) but emWave2 works really well. It’s like enforced meditation.

4.  HeartMath6400

Here they’ve updated the emWave2 device, using a small sensor to work with iPhone’s iOS. I haven’t used this version, but it’s more convenient to carry, since we never go anywhere without our cell phones anymore. It has added features, such as tracking history to show us our progress.