Iodine is an essential element vital for the development and growth of the body. Up to 80% of the iodine in a human body is found in the thyroid gland. The health benefits of iodine play a crucial role in maintaining the normal functioning of the thyroid gland in humans, which secretes thyroid hormones. These hormones control the metabolic rate of the human body. In fact, without iodine, thyroid hormones cannot be synthesized.
Iodine is also utilized as disinfectants and antiseptics. It is also an essential component in making animal feed supplements, inks and dyes, photography chemicals, catalysts, etc. However, iodine is found only in a few countries and that is why people who require iodine Contact Crude Iodine Supplies for obtaining the mineral.
Iodine is found in plants grown in iodine-rich soil, marine animals and plants, like brown seaweed kelp, deep-water whitefish, shellfish, sardines, lobster, clams, oyster, canned tuna, haddock, salmon, sea bass, shrimp, lima beans, garlic, sesame seeds, soybeans, spinach, etc. Another source of iodine is iodized salt.
Iodine Benefits To Health
Iodine is specifically required for regulating thyroid gland function and fetal development in humans. A breastfeeding mother should consume 290 mcg/day while a child up to 8 years should take 90 mcg of iodine every day. Iodized salt has 45 mcg of iodine/gram, which can be 190 mcg/teaspoon. So, just by consuming 1 teaspoon of salt, an adult can fulfill the iodine requirement. However, supplements may be required during lactation, early childhood, and pregnancy.
#1 Regulates Metabolic Rate
Iodine is responsible for controlling thyroid glands by helping in the production of thyroid hormones. These hormones are directly responsible for maintaining a body’s base metabolic rate. This rate affects regular processes like sleep cycles, absorption of food as well its transformation into energy, and efficacy of the organs.
Certain hormones, such as triiodothyronine and thyroxine, influence blood pressure, temperature, body weight, and heart rate. The body regulates Basic Metabolic Rate or BMR with the assistance of thyroid hormones.
#2 Hair And Skin Benefits
Iodine also prevents dry hair and skin. It can be used on teeth by the dentists to help prevent decay of the tooth. Iodine is also a vital element for hair care and its deficiency can cause hair loss. Moreover, because it is a key element of the thyroid hormone, iodine increases follicle strength and speeds up hair growth.
#3 Increased Energy
Iodine plays a crucial role in maintaining energy levels of a body by making sure that calories are being used efficiently through the regulation of the metabolic rate of the body. A few of the symptoms of hypothyroidism are – decreased energy, laziness, and drowsiness.
#4 Prevents Hypothyroidism
Due to the underactive thyroid gland, hypothyroidism occurs. This results in the general slowdown of the bodily processes because the body’s chemical balance goes off track. Hypothyroidism can occur because of many reasons and not just iodine deficiency. However, in the case of lactating and pregnant mothers, increasing iodine intake is important.
Amongst the most common side effects of hypothyroidism are increased weight. This is because the body is unable to burn the sufficientcalories to transform them into energy. Some hypothyroidism effects are dry skin, constipation, leg swelling, muscle cramps, and troubled concentration.
#5 Treats Infections
If you suffer from mild scrapes and cuts, your doctor may recommend you to use liquid iodine on them. Liquid iodine prevents infections as it kills bacteria. But in the case of severe cuts, burns, animal bites, and newborn babies, it should not be used.
#6 Disinfects Water
Iodine can disinfect water. When you are traveling or in the case of natural disaster, you may not have access to potable drinking water. In such cases, if you put iodine tablets in the water, it will become fit for drinking. However, you should not use this option in general because if you drink water that has iodine, your iodine intake may increase immensely. And an increased amount of iodine in your body can lead to adverse health conditions.
#7 Avoids Stillbirths
Pregnant women should intake the right amount of iodine because it helps prevent stillbirth as well as neurocognitive conditions, such as cretinism, in newborn babies. There have been associations between hypertensive disorders in pregnancy and thyroid function, therefore, iodine that is essential to regulate thyroid function can help prevent these disorders.
Sufficient intake ensures proper growth and development of the baby’s central nervous system and brain, along with hearing and speech abilities. Moreover, deficiency of iodine could also affect fertility in women. When a woman is breastfeeding, most of her iodine reserves go into nourishing her baby. As a result, she can face serious iodine deficiency.
The above-mentioned health benefits of iodine are adequate to highlight its importance in our daily diets. In the case of expecting and nursing mothers, it is common to see doctors prescribing them iodine supplements where iodine is not found naturally. However, it is important to consume iodine in a limited quantity.