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Iodine Deficiency: A Contributor to Poor Health?

Iodine Deficiency: A Contributor to Poor Health?

According to a 2009 study, approximately 50 percent or more of the adult population in most developed Westernised countries is deficient in iodine. Iodine deficiency is a growing problem in the UK.

Iodine is an important mineral that is needed in almost every organ and tissue in the body. It is vital for supporting thyroid function, a healthy metabolism, and even for the prevention of many chronic illnesses.

The most common problem of iodine deficiency occurs in thyroid disorders. The thyroid, of course, is responsible for balancing the body’s hormone levels. Too little or too much iodine may cause weight changes, hormonal imbalances, fatigue, mood changes and more. Read on to find out if your symptoms could be due to an iodine deficiency.

Hazards of Iodine Deficiency

It stands to reason, but it's worth pointing out that iodine deficiency disorders can be prevented by maintaining an adequate intake of iodine – whether via diet or regular consumption of a quality iodine supplement like Nascent Iodine. Unfortunately, most people are unaware they have a deficiency in the first place.

The UK’s iodine deficiency issue has been on the rise since 2011. The country ranks seventh out of the top ten most iodine-deficiency nations in the world, and not to brag, but we are one of only two high-income countries on the list. With the money and means to feed ourselves properly, there is simply no excuse for a deficiency of any kind.

Iodine deficiency is the world’s leading cause of preventable mental retardation. Aside from psychology symptoms, iodine deficiency plays a key role in how well your thyroid gland functions. In many ways, iodine is responsible for controlling thyroid function. Iodine deficiency has been linked to hypothyroidism, better known as a condition in which the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones. This may cause weight gain, fatigue, an inability to concentrate and heavier periods in women. Iodine deficiency has also been linked to goiter development.

Iodine is known for the following:

  • Reverses hypothyroidism
  • Supports apoptosis, or death of abnormal cells
  • Supports and enhances ATP production
  • Prevents fibrocystic breast disease
  • Decreases the need for insulin in diabetics
  • Supports protein synthesis
  • Destroys mould, fungi, pathogens and parasites
  • Supports immune health
  • Naturally detoxifies the body
  • Regulates oestrogen production
  • Helps Prevent heart disease
  • Supports pregnancy and foetal development
  • Wound healing

Symptoms of an iodine deficiency may include:

  • Trouble swallowing, digesting food and producing saliva
  • Dry mouth and swollen salivary glands
  • Dry skin and other skin problems such as rashes
  • Difficulty retaining information and poor concentration
  • Muscle weakness and pains

Testing for Iodine Deficiency

Iodine deficiency puts you at an increased risk of developing thyroid disease, fibrosis and fibromyalgia, and it poses a threat to the development and growth of unborn babies. You can perform an iodine loading test to check how deficient you are. Testing is advised before supplementation. An iodine loading test consists of taking four tablets of a total of 50 mg of iodine. For the next 24 hours, urinary levels are measured to detect a deficiency.

You can also do an iodine test at home. An iodine patch test is simple and not very expensive. It requires you to paint a swatch of iodine on your stomach and observe how long it takes for the colour to fade. The faster the colour fades, the greater the risk of iodine deficiency. If the colour remains intact for over 24 hours, your levels are probably good. But if the iodine is absorbed within four hours, it could be a sign of a severe iodine deficiency.

Getting More Iodine in Your Diet

As approximately 90 percent of ingested iodine is excreted through the kidneys within 24-48 hours, it doesn’t give our body much time to properly utilise the mineral to its full potential. It also does not give the body much time to make up for an iodine deficiency. That’s why it’s important to include as many iodine-rich foods in your diet as possible. Eggs, wild-caught fish, sea vegetables, whole-grain products and raw dairy products are some examples of foods that will boost your iodine levels. Cow's milk is probably the richest, most bioavailable source.

Some doctors will tell you that anyone urging you to avoid iodine is a medical idiot. Dr. Sircus is one of the creators of Nascent Iodine, which is uniquely superior to other iodine supplements as it is recognised by the body as the same type of iodine produced by the thyroid, making it easier to absorb.

Supplementing with Nascent Iodine may help you control normal functioning of the thyroid gland and all its glorious hormone production powers. Nascent iodine health benefits also extend to cognitive functioning, energy metabolism, nervous system functioning and even skin health. For more information on this product, visit our products page or contact us to get free advice from our friendly help desk.

If, however, you're keen to learn more about iodine, our latest blog on the topic is well worth a read.

Post updated: March 23, 2018.