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Iodine in diet
Alternative namesIodine is a trace mineral and an essential nutrient.
FunctionIodine is essential for the normal metabolism of cells. It is a necessary nutrient for the production of thyroid hormones and normal thyroid function.
Food SourcesIodized salt is the primary food source of iodine. Iodine is also widely available in seafood; cod, sea bass, haddock, and perch are good sources. Kelp is the most common vegetable seafood that is a rich source of iodine. Dairy products and plants grown in soil that is rich in iodine are also good sources.
Side EffectsDeficiency of iodine may occur in areas that have iodine-poor soil. Many months of iodine deficiency in the diet can cause goiter and/or hypothyroidism . With decreased iodine, the thyroid cells and the gland become enlarged. The deficiency is more prevalent in women than in men, and more common in pregnant women and adolescents. Iodine intake is stressed as a preventive measure because a goiter caused by iodine depletion can cause cretinism (a form of physical and mental retardation). Cretinism is extremely rare in the U.S. because iodine deficiency is generally not a problem.
Iodine toxicity is rare in the U.S. Very high intake of iodine can reduce the function of the thyroid gland.
RecommendationsThese are the recommended daily allowances:
Update Date: 10/17/2003David Webner, M.D., Sports Medicine Fellow, Crozer-Keystone Family Practice Program, Springfield, PA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT