LATIN NAME: Fucus spp.
Extracts of iodine-rich kelp, one of many forms of seaweed, provided an effective goiter remedy for many years. Today some herbalists rely on another component of kelp’s stemlike and leaflike parts, an agent known as sodium alginate. Because of its action, kelp is prescribed to aid in the treatment of heavy-metal environmental pollutants including barium and cadmium, and to prevent the body from absorbing strontium 90, a radioactive substance created in nuclear power plants. Some practitioners of alternative medicine also recommend taking kelp supplements for thyroid disorders such as mild hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid).
WARNING: If you are already taking medication for hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid), kelp supplements could worsen the condition.
WARNING: Do not gather your own wild kelp for use; coastal colonies may be contaminated by offshore pollutants.
WARNING: Check with your practitioner before using kelp if you have a history of thyroid problems or high blood pressure.
TARGET AILMENTS: Take internally for:
- Goiter, hypothyroidism, radiation exposure, heavy-metal environmental pollutants.
SIDE EFFECTS: None expected