When starting The Iodine Protocol, or just increasing our unrefined salt intake, we may find ourselves dislodging and detoxing bromine. Bromine is iodine’s evil sibling that makes it harder for our body to remain saturated with iodine. Today’s environment of new products gassing off, medications and food ingredients etc are overloading us with bromine while most of us are not exposed to much iodine at all.

How are bromine levels elevated?

Since the 1970s, brominated and chlorinated flame retardants have been applied to

  • Textiles (fibers, yarns, filaments, threads, different fabric types) AKA clothing
  • Baby products (including clothing)
  • Foam in couches
  • Carpets
  • Drapes

  • Building insulation
  • Personal computers
  • TV sets
  • Car dashboards
  • Electrical cables
  • Many other products
Bromine is used to bleach flour. Iodine had been used for this purpose, but the people that care a lot about us decided to remove iodine and replace it with the potentially cancerous1 version of a halogen, bromine. There are breads available that do not use bromine, but if the bread is white, it probably has bromine.
Bromide is one of the most abundant and ubiquitous trace elements in the biosphere. In the 20th century, bromide was increasingly introduced into the environment as a salt‐mining waste product and a degradation product of fumigants, leading to the inevitable exposure of bromide for the general population via their food intake.2

  • Because bromine is not chemically bound to the material but is instead incorporated during manufacturing or sprayed on afterward, they routinely escape as vapor or airborne particles that tend to stick to surfaces or settle in dust.
  • These compounds are building up in human fat, breast milk, and seminal fluid.3
  • During the past 30 years, Hites reported in 2004, PBDE levels in human blood, milk, and tissue increased by a factor of 100essentially doubling every five years.4
  • Read more at Flame retardants in consumer products are linked to health and cognitive problems – The Washington Post

Is it really that bad for us?

  • A child’s exposure to bromine, whether before or after birth, is associated with poorer attention, fine motor coordination, and cognition. 5
  • Bromine competes with iodine and chloride.67 We know how important iodine is but chloride is very important as well.
  • The seriousness of poisoning caused by bromine depends on the amount, route, and length of time of exposure, as well as the age and preexisting medical condition of the person exposed.
  • Survivors of serious poisoning caused by inhaling (breathing in) bromine may have long-term lung problems
  • People who survive serious bromine poisoning may also have long-term effects from damage done by what is called systemic poisoning, for example, kidney or brain damage from low blood pressure

So if acute exposure can cause long-term systematic poisoning resulting in kidney and brain damage, I wonder what happens when we are exposed to it slowly, like when we eat bread regularly or own furniture or a car or tv, or computer, or curtains, or food..

How are we exposed to bromine?

It’s everywhere.
Bromine is found naturally in the earth’s crust and in seawater in various chemical forms. Bromine can also be found as an alternative to chlorine in swimming pools. Products containing bromine are used in agriculture and sanitation and as fire retardants (chemicals that help prevent things from catching fire). 8

  • Bromine is a naturally occurring element that is a liquid at room temperature.
  • It has a brownish-red color with a bleach-like odor, and it dissolves in water.
  • Food via chemicals used to grow it
  • Disinfectants
  • Some bromine-containing compounds were historically used as sedatives (drugs that can make people calm or sleepy)

Symptoms of bromine toxicity or detox

A lot of these symptoms are from a handful of the same papers. So instead of linking random symptoms to those pages, these footnotes here have them –> 910
  • Anorexia
  • Anxiety
  • Ataxia
  • Abnormal skin pigmentation
  • Acneiform ( acne vulgaris, rosacea, folliculitis, and perioral dermatitis )
  • Bad Breath
  • Brain fog
  • Breast tenderness ( transient—on & off )
  • Bromoderma ( acne ) on the face and hands, skin eruptions
  • Changes in body odor
  • Cherry angiomas
  • Coma
  • Confusion
  • Constipation
  • Dark thoughts ( no reason to live ); depression
  • Diarrhea/constipation, GI issues
  • Disturbance of color perception
  • Drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Eyelid twitching/foot twitching
  • Fatigue
  • Erythematous rashes
  • Hair loss
  • Hallucinations
  • Headache
  • Hormone changes
  • Increased salivation
  • Increased sweating
  • Kidney pain
  • Leg and hip ache ( like arthritis )
  • Memory loss
  • Mental dullness
  • Metallic taste
  • Mood swings, irritability, rage
  • Mouth & tongues sores, or “sore mouth”
  • Muscle weakness
  • Odd swallowing sensation
  • Psychosis
  • Pustular
  • Rash
  • Runny nose
  • Reflex changes
  • Restlessness
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Skin splits
  • Slurred speech
  • Stupor
  • Tingling in hands &/or feet
  • Tremors
  • Urethral spasm, frequent, urination ( mistaken for urinary infection )
  • Unusual urine color or odor
  • Vision changes
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness

Can Bromine toxicity be handled better?

“There are no specific antidotes for bromide, although administering chloride and fluids can help the body to excrete bromide more quickly. Furosemide may help aid urinary excretion in individuals with renal impairment or where bromide toxicity is severe.” 11

The medial establishment seems to agree that there is no antidote for bromine, then turns around and gives two potential solutions. One of them is chloride, which is part of unrefined salt included in the iodine protocol. I have consumed very large amounts of Celtic salt on my food as I was detoxing bromine. I found relief from Salt Loading a few times, but preferred to increase my salt intake via food instead of via water for several reasons. More information about salt loading here

Bromine is taking the place of iodine as we’ve been exposed to more bromine than iodine. One we get enough iodine to push the bromine out, it can find its way out in various ways depending how our body’s chemistry is currently running.

  1. Methyl bromide exposure and cancer risk in the Agricultural Health Study -
  2. Metabolism of bromide and its interference with the metabolism of iodine -
  3. House dust concentrations of organophosphate flame retardants in relation to hormone levels and semen quality parameters - Environ Health Perspect . 2010 Mar;118(3):318-23. doi: 10.1289/ehp.0901332. -
  4. Flame retardants in consumer products are linked to health and cognitive problems - The Washington Post By Liza GrossApril 15, 2013
  5. In utero and childhood polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) exposures and neurodevelopment in the CHAMACOS study - Environ Health Perspect. 2013 Feb;121(2):257-62. doi: 10.1289/ehp.1205597. Epub 2012 Nov 15. -
  6. Pharmacokinetics of bromide ion--an overview -
  7. Bromide excretion as affected by chloride administration -
  8. Emergency Preparedness and Response -
  9. Bromoderma -
  11. (1st November 2003) Poisoning & drug overdose, 4th, 140-141, Appleton & Lange.
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January 7, 2023

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