5 Incredible Benefits of Iodine for Your Health

Are you aware of the significance of iodine for your body? To ensure the health of yourself and your family, it is essential to meet every nutrient’s needs in your body. This becomes particularly crucial when mothers are pregnant. Pregnant women are strongly advised to consume a balanced nutritious diet that includes folic acid, vitamin D supplements, and iodine. Iodine not only helps the body remain fit but also aids in maintaining fetal growth.

Iodine’s Importance for Pregnant Women According to the World Health Organization (WHO), iodine is crucial for building thyroid hormone production and regulating the fetal brain and nervous system’s development. The need for iodine during pregnancy increases to ensure that the fetus receives a sufficient supply. The National Institutes of Health reports that iodine is one of the micro minerals necessary for the body, and the body cannot produce it on its own.

Iodine and Its Function in the Body To meet the body’s iodine requirements, a person needs to consume foods that contain iodine or are sources of iodine. The thyroid gland uses this substance to function normally. Some of the functions of thyroid hormone include regulating the body’s metabolism, maintaining bone health, developing the central nervous system (brain), particularly in infants and children, and playing a role in maintaining the immune response.

Benefits of Iodine for Body Health Iodine is essential for preventing a decrease in thyroid hormone production, which helps avoid disease. The Healthline.com page explains some benefits of iodine, including:

  1. Prevents Hypothyroidism Hypothyroidism is a condition that occurs when the body fails to produce enough thyroid hormone. This hormone is necessary for maintaining the body’s metabolism and organ function. Adequate iodine intake can help prevent this condition.
  2. Prevents Goiter or Swelling in the Neck Iodine deficiency primarily affects the thyroid gland, which is located near the jaw. When the body lacks iodine, the thyroid gland works harder than usual, resulting in swelling. Adequate iodine intake can help prevent swelling. If not treated immediately, swelling can become permanent.
  3. Prevents Pregnancy Disorders Iodine plays an important role in maintaining the health and development of the fetus in the womb. Pregnant women who are deficient in iodine may experience symptoms of a swollen neck, get cold easily, and often feel weak and lethargic. A deficiency of this substance increases the risk of miscarriage, disturbances in brain development and physical growth, or cretinism. Cretinism can cause growth and development disorders, such as muscle tension, stunting, gait disturbances, deafness, and speech impairments. A study published in The Lancet of 1,000 families in England proved that pregnant women who are deficient in iodine tend to have children with learning difficulties. The condition affects the health of the child.
  4. Prevents Excessive Weight Gain Excessive weight gain without a cause can be a sign of iodine deficiency. This is due to low thyroid hormone levels. In the process of metabolism, thyroid hormone plays a role in converting food into energy and body heat. When thyroid hormone levels are low, the body produces less energy, and food calories are stored as fat.
  5. Prevents Fatigue and Weakness Thyroid hormone plays a significant role in the body’s metabolism and energy production. A deficiency of this substance interferes with these processes, leading to tiredness and weakness. A decrease in energy production affects concentration, making it challenging to understand and remember things.

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