HOW TO RECOGNIZE A SHORTAGE OF IODINE
Iodine is used by your thyroids to make hormones which support healthy cell development, a well-working metabolism and controls growth (1
). The symptoms of an iodine deficiency are very similar to hyperthyroidism (also known as low thyroid hormones).
Iodine is a important mineral to the human body. Since our body is unable to create this mineral itself, we need to get iodine from our foods. Iodine is not commonly found in the foods we eat (except for seafood). Iodine is therefore usually added in bread and salt (iodized salt). Iodine is a mineral that mainly occurs in seafood, fish, seaweed and plankton.
An iodine deficiency can halt a healthy growth and obstruct learning abilities in children. An iodine deficiency in pregnant women may even result in dwarfism. It’s very important to provide your body with enough iodine.
There are certain groups of people that have a higher risk of creating a iodine deficiency. Those people may benefit from using iodine supplements next to their daily meals. It is, however, important to note that if you suspect you have a shortage of iodine, you should always consult a doctor before taking any supplements.
People with a higher risk of obtaining an iodine deficiency are (2
- Pregnant woman (also after birth since they are still providing nutrients for their babies when breastfeeding),
- People following a vegetarian or vegan diet.
- People who don’t consume iodized bread and salt.
- People living in areas with little to none iodine in the soil. This includes most European countries, Asia and New-Zealand.
A shortage of iodine can be recognized by the following symptoms. If you experience one of the symptoms, it may be wise to consult a physician.