A pinch of salt can eliminate brain damage!

Iodine deficiency produces adverse effects which is widespread in a population. Global Iodine Deficiency Disorder Prevention Day, observed on 21st October, is a global awareness campaign that focuses on reducing the spread of iodine deficiency disorder and to educate the public about the disease. Inadequate supply of iodine can cause a health condition called iodine deficiency disorder (IDD), which generally affects young children and pregnant women and causes mental abnormalities.

Good to know facts:

  1. Our body requires iodine for the production of hormones, secreted by the thyroid gland, which is required for physical and mental growth.
  2. The deficiency of iodine causes goiter, stunted growth, low mental development and brain damage in people.
  3. In pregnant women, iodine deficiency can result in a child with physical and mental retardation or sometimes may even result in stillbirth or abortion.
  4. One-sixth of the world population is still in the risk of IDD.
  5. IDD is caused due to low dietary intake of iodine through fruits, vegetables and sea food.
  6. Usage of iodized salt is one of the best and inexpensive ways to fulfill the body’s iodine requirements.

Iodine deficiency can cause the following negative effects on our body:

  • Muscle stiffness including neuromuscular weakness
  • Stunted physical and mental growth
  • Hair loss
  • Mental illness including subnormal intelligence, mental retardation, impaired cognitive development
  • Defect in vision, speech, and hearing
  • Spontaneous abortion and still birth in pregnant women

Food sources of iodine:

Apart from salt which is the best source of iodine, milk, eggs, seaweed, shellfish, sea fish, meat and cereal grains are other iodine-rich sources.

The average daily requirement for a normal adult is 1gm. The absence of this small nutrient in your body can lead to a big setback in leading your normal life! Increase your dietary iodine intake and keep IDD at an arm’s length!

Sources:

  1. World Health Organization. Accessed Oct 15, 2015.
  2. Iodine Global Network. Accessed Oct 16, 2015.
  3. National Health Portal. Accessed Oct 20, 2015.