Kelp – The Miracle Weight Loss Supplement!
You know that brown stuff that’s often found washed up on beaches, smells funny, and is typically covered in flies? Sure you do. It’s called kelp. And it turns out that this slimy, smelly, fly covered stuff may be exactly what you need if you’re struggling to lose weight.
That’s right. Kelp is jam-packed with many vitamins and minerals that are vital to our overall health and wellbeing. One of these minerals, iodine, plays a very important role in regulating thyroid function. And it’s this ability to regulate thyroid function that makes kelp, for many, a miracle weight loss supplement.
My Personal Weight Loss Story
Throughout my life I had never been one to really struggle with my weight. Sure, I’d fluctuate a bit, but I always felt like I had control. However, that all started to change in my early 30’s, when suddenly, I was gaining weight and couldn’t seem to do a thing about it.
Nothing personally had changed. I wasn’t eating any differently and I was still exercising regularly. But no matter what I did, the weight kept adding on, until at one point I topped the scale at 244 pounds.
Fortunately, it was about this time that I started taking a kelp supplement after reading an article on how healthy it was for you. The article mentioned nothing about weight loss so this was not an expectation of mine while taking it.
Fast forward to today, however, and I have lost just over 30 pounds in six months by changing nothing more than supplementing with kelp. Literally nothing! I’ve also gone from a 38 inch waist to a 35, dropped two belt sizes, and was able to put on a nice pair of dress pants I hadn’t been able to wear in years.
How was this happening? The answer lies within the connection between kelp and the thyroid gland.
The Thyroid Gland And Metabolism
Your thyroid is a butterfly shaped gland at the front of your neck just below the Adam’s apple. Although it serves many purposes, it’s main function is in the regulation of your metabolism, or the rate your body breaks food down to energy.
It does this by releasing T3 and T4 (thyroid hormones) that influence the metabolism of every cell in your body. When functioning properly, the thyroid releases just enough thyroid hormone to keep your metabolism running at a healthy rate.
However, in order to make these hormones, your thyroid requires a little something called iodine. Because our bodies can’t synthesize iodine on their own, all the iodine we get has to either come from the food we eat or through supplementation.
Unfortunately, many of us no longer consume the amount of iodine necessary for optimal thyroid functioning and health.
I Thought Iodine Deficiencies Were A Thing Of The Past
They were. But they’re making a comeback.
One of the reasons for this is soil depletion. Modern farming methods are draining nutrients from the soil faster than they can be replenished. This means the foods we grow today have less vitamins and minerals, such as iodine, than the same food grown 50 years ago. And this trend is only getting worse.
Additionally, many foods today are grown in soil that is already iodine deficient. Both of these scenarios lead to crops low in iodine.
Another reason for an increase in iodine deficiencies is the move away from unnatural products like table salt to more natural products like sea salt. Although sea salt is widely recognized for being healthier, it contains much less iodine than regular table salt which is iodized (iodine is added).
Unfortunately, because table salt was the main source of iodine for many people, the move away from it has left many with a diet virtually void of this important mineral.
A lesser known reason for a rise in iodine deficiencies is the widespread use of bromine in many food and commercial products. Bromine, because it’s so similar in structure to iodine, competes with iodine in the body for receptor space. This acts to accelerate iodine deficiencies as iodine now has less receptors to bind to.
Although outlawed in the use of food in just about every other country in the world, bromine is still widely used in many popular foods here in the U.S. including breads and many sodas.
The Sluggish Thyroid
Without adequate levels of iodine, our thyroid glands begin to become “sluggish”, and stops producing the necessary amounts of thyroid hormone to keep us healthy. How do you know if you have a sluggish thyroid? One of the easiest ways is by assessing your metabolism.
If diet and exercise no longer seem to be helping to control your weight, and if simply looking at food adds ten pounds to your midsection, you’re very likely suffering from an underactive thyroid. Other symptoms may include constant fatigue, being constipated, general aches and pains, feeling cold all the time, having dry skin, thinning “lifeless” hair, having a puffy looking face, impaired memory, and a feeling of overall depression.
Don’t be fooled into thinking these are normal side affects of aging. They are not! If you’ve been experiencing one or more of these symptoms for any period of time, a sluggish thyroid may be to blame.
I feel it’s important to note here as well that you can still have “sluggish” thyroid gland even if tests say your thyroid is functioning within “normal limits”. Remember, what is “normal” for one person may not be normal for you.
Kelp To The Rescue
Looking back, I believe I was showing signs of a sluggish thyroid for some time. I had been slowly gaining weight for a couple of years, my skin was constantly dry, and I felt like I was always tired. It was terrible. For a while, I actually started believing this was just how you were supposed to feel as you got older.
Fortunately, I was dead wrong. Within a month of taking a kelp I had already started to loose weight, I had more energy, and my skin was starting to look healthier. What was the change? It was iodine.
Kelp is loaded with iodine. In fact, kelp by far has the highest concentration of iodine of any other food on the planet. And I definitely wasn’t eating any of that. Actually, although I consider my diet mostly healthy, I wasn’t eating much iodine containing foods at all. My thyroid was literally starving for it.
How Much Iodine Do You Need?
Unfortunately, the jury is still out on this one. Although the US recommended daily allowance (RDA) is set at about 150 mcg, many feel that this amount is too low for optimal thyroid health. This makes sense considering this RDA was set only to prevent goiters and not to optimize the health of your thyroid.
Depending on where you look, you will see different recommendations. Personally, I am seeing dramatic improvements in my own health by taking one kelp supplement containing 325 mcg of iodine per day.
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