Why put potassium iodide in capsules?

Please tell me the reason your Potassium Iodide comes in capsules. My question is two-fold: first, that the shelf-life of capsules is less than that of tablets. Second: that gelatin capsules will soften and become soft and become partially-dissolved "mush" inside the container (inside my backpack)...in the Arizona desert heat, of the coming Summer!!  Thank You!

Hi Max. Thanks for your question. As we know, potassium iodide is naturally found in seaweed, and up until recently, Lidtke offered pure potassium iodide both in tablets and in capsules. Both products had 32.5 mg each, and both came in 90-count bottles. However, demand for tablets seems to be greater, and after reviewing the results of recent tests, we now extend a 15-year guarantee on every bottle of our potassium iodide tablets.

We believe that many of our customers are interested in stocking up for the future, so changing over to tablets exclusively seems to make sense. Tablets, of course, are slightly less expensive to manufacture than capsules, and yet they still have the advantage of meeting pharmaceutical standards for dissolution and purity. And, they are vegan.

Of course, you may have other supplements that come in capsules that you take along on your back-packing trips. Whether or not capsules begin to stick together depends on several main factors. One is the humidity of your environment, another is the permeability of the bottle to moisture, another is whether or not a bottle is left in the direct Sunlight, and another is the type of gelatin capsule used.

The soft gelcaps frequently used for vitamin E and other fat soluble vitamins are much more prone to sticking together than two-piece hard gelatin capsules. I have heard of packages containing two-piece hard gelatin capsules being left in a metal mailbox in the blazing Summer Sun in Texas, with no mention of capsules sticking together. On the other hand, the owner of a health-food store in New Orleans told us that capsules of nearly every brand tended to stick together over time due to the high humidity.

By contrast, tablets never seem to stick together unless they become soggy. Furthermore, to increase shelf life and performance, our potassium iodide tablets have a coating that provides a barrier to the environment and controls the rate at which they dissolve.

A final consideration is the fact that potassium iodide is extremely stable and readily absorbed - not unlike salt - as long as it is not mixed with salt. A few brands choose to sell potassium iodate (KIO) because it is more stable when blended with table salt.  When potassium iodide is mixed with sodium chloride, over time the chloride ions tend to replace the iodide atoms that are attached to potassium.  This reaction can happen with other oxidizing agents as well, however this is not a concern with coated potassium iodide tablets because the coating is a barrier both to chloride ions, oxygen, and carbon dioxide.

As a caveat, consumers should be aware that 32.5 mg of potassium iodide provides considerably more than the RDA for iodine. Hence, this product is not intended to be taken for simple, daily maintenance. When needed, however, tablets can be broken into much smaller pieces, and the importance of iodine to good health and proper mental development should not be underestimated.

Surprisingly, even after the United States introduced iodized salt in the 1920's, iodine deficiency still is claimed to be the world's leading cause of mental retardation and is linked even to leprosy, though the primary vector of this ancient disease is Mycobacterium leprae. Furthermore, simply adding iodized salt to the diet of those in iodine-poor regions in the United States is credited with elevating IQ scores 15 points. Sadly, we estimate that iodized salt and other forms of supplemental iodine will increasingly become important as the oceans - and every living thing in them - become more toxic and barren.

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