My medical training only covered high-dose prescription of lithium carbonate for treating mania and bipolar depressive disorders. Using prescription-strength lithium requires close monitoring because at high doses it can be toxic.
But I’ve found that lower doses of lithium can be very effective for nearly all patients. In fact, the only patients I give high-dose lithium are those suffering from hyperthyroid disorders. And only the severest require that kind of prescription. Most do well with lower doses.
Lithium carbonate is the prescription form used by conventional doctors to treat bipolar disorder. But the absorption of lithium carbonate is not as optimal as other forms.
Over the years, I have used many different doses and formulations of lithium. I believe chelated lithium is much better absorbed, and therefore provides a better clinical response than lithium carbonate.
Two chelated forms of lithium are very effective: lithium orotate (which I take) and lithium aspartate. Personally, I prefer prescribing orotate over the aspartate form. In severe cases of depression or hyperthyroid disorders, I have patients take prescription strength lithium in doses of 300 mg to 900 mg per day.
When used this way, lithium levels in the blood will climb and the element will diffuse into the cells. But this kind of high dosing with lithium can be complicated by serious adverse effects such as difficulty breathing, kidney problems (including kidney failure), and even death.
On the other hand, I have not observed nor have I read about serious toxicity problems occurring with low-dose lithium — below 50 mg per day.
Lithium is one of the best treatments I’ve seen for hyperthyroidism. In combination with iodine, unrefined salt, thymus gland extract, and vitamin A, lithium therapy can be instrumental in helping a patient suffering from Graves’ disease or Hashimoto’s thyroiditis recover quickly.
Though not 100 percent effective, the vast majority of hyperthyroid patients can recover normal thyroid function after taking those supplements.
More information about this therapy can be found in my book, Overcoming Thyroid Disorders.
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