Thyroid gland: iodine is a component of thyroid hormones (thyroid hormones and thyroid stimulating hormone) and is necessary for their synthesis. They determine the level of metabolism, affect the conversion of food into energy and the way it is applied. Thyroid hormones are significant for the growth and development of all organs.
Iodine in humans takes part in regulation:
- energy metabolism, body temperature,
- biochemical reaction rates
- protein metabolism, fat, water and electrolyte metabolism,
- metabolism of a number of vitamins
- processes of growth and development of the body, including neuro-psychological development.
In addition, iodine increases oxygen consumption by tissues.
The benefits of iodine: provides more energy, promotes growth, facilitates diet due to the burning of excess fat, activates mental work, guarantees the health of teeth, skin, nails, hair.
Iodine in food:
- sea products - red and brown algae (kelp), halibut, cod, herring, shrimp, haddock, sea salt, clams, sardines,
- iodized salt
- beef liver, eggs, milk,
- onions, sorrel, cabbage, carrots (if grown on soil rich in iodine).
Partly iodine comes with water.
Average daily iodine rate - 120 - 150 µg, the maximum allowable amount of consumption - 300 µg. During pregnancy and lactation, the rate increases to 175 - 200 micrograms.
Lack of body
Nutrient deficiency occurs if the amount of microelement intake per day is less than 10 μg.
Most of the iodine is in the ocean. A large amount of mineral matter is washed from the soil surface with snow, freezing, rain, wind, floods and rivers. All grain crops grown on such soils have iodine deficiency - 10 µg / kg instead of 1 mg / kg.
According to estimates by WHO researchers, 1 billion people in developing countries have a high probability of developing diseases caused by micronutrient deficiencies.
Possible reasons for the shortage:
- The unsatisfactory amount of microelement intake from food.
- Minor consumption of seafood by humans.
- Lack of iodine prophylaxis in iodine-deficient regions.
- The presence in the diet of factors that impede the absorption and utilization of iodine (taking excess amounts of bromine, iron, manganese, lead, calcium, chlorine, cobalt).
- Taking medicines that impede the absorption and utilization of iodine (lithium carbonate).
- Disorders of iodine metabolism.
- Increased background radiation.
- Habitat pollution.
- Increasing the body's sensitivity to allergens.
1. Increase the production of thyroid hormones.
3. The occurrence of iodine deficiency disorders:
- hypothyroidism (extreme manifestations in children - cretinism, in adults - myxedema),
- loss of strength, decreased performance, drowsiness, development of edema of the limbs, torso, face,
- increased cholesterol
- weight gain
- bradycardia (a type of arrhythmia with a low heart rate),
- lowering the intellectual level: slowing down of mental reaction, impaired cognitive functions, attention.
- cretinism: the embryo develops physical, neurological, mental defects of cretinism with iodine deficiency in the first 6 months of the mother’s pregnancy, which can be prevented with the help of mother’s iodization carried out in time.
- various types of paralysis
- reduced fertility (the ability of a sexually mature organism to reproduce offspring), the birth of a dead fetus, congenital malformations,
- increased mortality in the perinatal period.
Detailed information on risk factors, symptoms of deficiency, diagnosis and treatment of the condition can be found in this article.
Excess iodine in the body
A toxic dose per day for a person is 2-5 mg, lethal - 35 - 350 mg.
The reasons iodine excess in the body:
- Excessive iodine intake.
- Disorders of iodine metabolism.
The main symptoms of excess iodine in the body:
2. The occurrence of thyrotoxicosis, hyperthyroidism:
- headaches, excessive fatigue, loss of strength,
- depressive states
- tachycardia (increased heart rate),
- rashes, acne, skin numbness,
- iododerma (skin damage as a result of long-term administration of large doses of iodine),
- iodism (aseptic inflammation of the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract, salivary glands, paranasal sinuses, resulting from an overdose or idiosyncrasy of iodine preparations).
Iodine supplements should be taken only on the advice of a doctor.
The biological role of iodine
The main biological role of iodine is in the synthesis of thyroid hormones (thyroxine and triiodothyronine), through which it implements the following effects:
- stimulates growth and development of the body
- regulates tissue growth and differentiation
- increases blood pressure and heart rate and strength
- regulates (increases) the rate of flow of many biochemical reactions
- regulates the exchange of energy, increases body temperature
- regulates protein, fat, water and electrolyte metabolism
- regulates the exchange of vitamins
- increases oxygen consumption by tissues
Food Sources of Iodine
The content of iodine in products strongly depends on the geochemical characteristics of the area.
All products of the sea are rich in iodine (the ocean is the main source of iodine): any sea fish, clams, algae (for example, kelp). Such seafood as cod, red and brown algae, halibut, sardines, herring, haddock, shrimps, etc., are especially rich in iodine. Among other products you can highlight such sources of iodine as milk and egg (yolk). Iodized salt is also commonly used to prevent iodine deficiency now - replacing it with a traditional salt must fully satisfy the human body’s need for iodine.
Causes of iodine deficiency
Two possible global factors of this violation can be distinguished: inadequate entry of an element and its excessively uncompensated excretion.
The factors of insufficient income include:
- reduction of consumption of iodine-containing products,
- stopping or not conducting iodine prophylaxis in endemic regions (all areas except the sea coast),
- excessive consumption of elements (Co, Mn, Pb, Ca, Br, Cl, F) that violate iodine utilization,
- increasing the content of unstable isotope of iodine in the environment,
- allergic reactions to products containing iodine or its compounds.
The factors of overly rapid elimination include:
- violation of regulation of iodine metabolism,
- taking drugs that have a strumogenic (disrupting the production of thyroid hormones) action, for example, lithium carbonate.
Consequences of excess iodine
- development of thyrotoxicosis (an increase in the level of thyroid hormones)
- weight loss
- dyspeptic disorders
- fragility and hair loss
- muscle weakness, paralysis
- decrease in the strength of the skeleton, tooth decay
- development of toxicoderma (iododerma)
- formation of diffuse toxic goiter
- the development of iodism (aseptic inflammation) of the mucous membranes in places of intensive iodine excretion (respiratory tract, salivary glands, etc.).
What can lead to iodine deficiency during pregnancy
If a pregnant woman lacks iodine, thyroid function decreases, which can lead to such a disease as “hypothyroidism.”
Hypothyroidism is a disease caused by a prolonged, persistent lack of thyroid hormones.
Symptoms of hypothyroidism: depression, weakness, drowsiness, impaired memory, frequent colds, constipation, pain in the joints and muscles.
The consequences of this disease in pregnancy: the development of preeclampsia, placental abruption and stillbirth.
Iodine can prevent mastopathy
During a serious study for several years, excellent results were obtained in the treatment of fibrocystic mastopathy with iodine.
More than 1365 patients received 3-6 milligrams of molecular iodine daily for several years. As a result, more than 72% of them felt objective improvements: seals disappeared, women stopped feeling chest pains, and the tests performed also showed significant improvements. 
Iodine cleanses the body of pathogenic microorganisms, mold, fungi, parasites
Scientists have managed to establish that iodine has tremendous power in the fight against the "uninvited guests" of our body. Iodine as a negatively charged substance is able to destroy all pathogens, mold, fungi and parasites, including malaria-borne plasmodia.
At the same time iodine cleanses and disinfects the lymph daily. The lymphatic system is a system for cleaning the body of debris: decay products, toxins, pathogens, bacteria, viruses. 
Iodine displaces toxic: bromine, fluorine, chlorine from the body
When ingested, iodine displaces such dangerous and harmful substances as bromine, fluorine, chlorine, mercury, lead, cadmium from the cell space.
Each of these substances is extremely toxic, most are known carcinogens. And, unfortunately, all these substances can be found everywhere in everyday life.
For example, bromine is used in the production of insecticides and pesticides, it will be used for the manufacture of non-combustible paints, fabrics and plastics, impregnation of wooden products. Mercury can be obtained by eating tuna and other sea fish. Lead enters the air daily with car exhaust.
Iodine is the strongest antioxidant
According to recent studies, iodine is an even stronger antioxidant than vitamin C and vitamin E. Iodine molecules are able to bind one of the most powerful free radicals - hydroxyl ions. During the stepwise neutralization, iodine turns these ions into water, thereby saturating our cells with water! [eight]
This is an amazing property of iodine - you can say the elixir of youth, because the cells of our body age when dehydrated and are destroyed by the attack of free radicals.
The functions of iodine in the body are enormous: it contributes to the production of the hormone - estrogen, helps in the process of healing wounds, reducing bedsores, tissue scars and scars, keloid formations, contractures, can be used to restore hair growth (iodine masks). Scientists are actively and quite successfully conducting experiments in the use of iodine in the fight against cancer cells.
Receipt with the products of an important element is necessary for the synthesis of thyroid hormones, helps reduce cholesterol and blood clotting, prevents the development of atherosclerosis.
Iodine-containing drugs have antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory effects, promote the secretion of mucus, so they are used to liquefy sputum, to improve expectoration.
Iodine in humans
The thyroid gland is located on both sides of the larynx and consists of two bodies weighing 15g oval each. With slow accumulation of microelement, it is inactive (hypothyroidism). With excessively rapid accumulation, on the contrary, its activity is excessive (hyperthyroidism).
The intake of products containing iodine is necessary for the thyroid gland to produce various hormones, including thyroxine. They regulate metabolic processes, the function of the cardiovascular, digestive system, intellectual, sexual function.
The thyroid gland also produces a special hormone regulator of the pituitary gland, it controls the intensity of the production of other hormones. The higher the content of the hormone regulator in the blood, the less intensively the other hormones are produced by the thyroid gland.
Malfunction of the thyroid gland affects the course of pregnancy, can lead to not bearing a fetus, placental abruption. Reduced and increased function violate the female cycle, causing infertility.
Violations of the thyroid gland can cause mastitis, fibroids, prostate adenoma.
The development of hypothyroidism in children leads to mental retardation, stunting or disproportionate development of individual parts of the body, to slow puberty.
In adults, hypothyroidism is manifested by edema of mucous membranes, slower metabolism, and aging of the skin. The person suffering from the disease looks much older, constantly feels tired and weak, he develops atherosclerosis more quickly.
When hyperthyroidism develops Bazedov disease, metabolic processes are accelerated. Weight decreases, the nervous system suffers, limbs tremble, eyes bulging.
With insufficient intake of products containing iodine, and the subsequent development of hyperthyroidism, the thyroid gland can grow evenly without impairing its function. Diagnose endemic goiter.
Its appearance is a kind of reaction to insufficient intake of iodine-containing products. By increasing its size, the body tries to keep producing the necessary amount of hormones.
With a lack of iodine in the products, some thyroid cells begin to work more actively. Autonomous entities that are independent of the action of the hormone regulator, grow into nodes. The function of the thyroid gland is not disturbed, but thyrotoxicosis develops. Nodular goiter is often diagnosed after 50 years of age.
Daily need for iodine
The trace element is needed for adults and children. The need increases during puberty, during pregnancy, and during hypothermia.
The adult thyroid gland contains up to 20–30 mg of iodine. For all life, only 3-5g of microelement (approximately a teaspoon) comes into the body with products.
It is considered that an adult needs daily intake of a trace element at the rate of 3 µg per 1 kg of weight.
For your information: 1g of iodized salt contains approximately 14 µg of trace element. But it is not at all necessary to add it in food in quantities in order to cover the daily rate with one salt. In the diet should include iodine-containing products.
Deficiency and excess of iodine in the body
The disadvantage of the receipt of microelement affects up to 70% of the population of Russia. The following signs signal iodine deficiency:
- lethargy, fatigue, feeling tired,
- tearfulness, irritability, especially in the morning,
- hypothyroidism or endemic goiter.
Iodine deficiency can lead to elevated blood pressure.
To identify the deficit, apply in the evening, before bedtime, with an alcohol solution of the trace element on the forearm three lines: thin, medium, thick.
- If thin disappeared the next morning, there is no shortage.
- Thin and medium disappeared - there is a slight shortage.
- All lines disappeared - lack of iodine in the body.
Excess trace element is rare. In the nose increases the amount of mucus, there are signs of a cold, hives, and other manifestations of allergies.
Products containing iodine
The trace element quickly disappears, especially when boiled, so iodized salt should be added to already prepared dishes, stored in a sealed container. The ability to eliminate iodine deficiency saves only 3-4 months.
Walnuts are taken with reduced iodine content. Shelled shells quickly lose their beneficial properties.
For violations in the thyroid gland apple seeds are useful. The seeds of one apple contain a daily rate. But on condition that the apples are imported, grown in micronutrient-rich soil.
Such products as soybean, flaxseed, white cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts can prevent the iodine deficiency. They contain substances that neutralize the microelement.
For example, meat is often replaced with soy. Therefore, the use of large amounts of soybeans can aggravate iodine deficiency.
Indications and contraindications
Drugs containing iodine, as well as all other drugs, have both indications for use and contraindications. Iodine is an element that is directly involved in the production of thyroid hormones. With its lack of hormone thyroxin is produced in insufficient quantities, which is the cause of various failures in the body. Iodine enters the body with air, water and food. But not everyone can afford to breathe fresh sea air, which is saturated with iodine, and not everyone cares about the diet of their food and consume foods rich in iodine. As a result, iodine deficiency develops, and all the ensuing consequences related to the thyroid gland.
Drugs containing iodine are shown not only as drugs, but for prophylactic improvement of thyroid:
- Treatment and prevention of goiter endemic nature. For people who live in geographic latitudes with a low percentage in water and in the air of such an important element as iodine, these drugs are especially indicated.
- Treatment and prevention of non-toxic goiter.
- Treatment of hyperthyroidism (radioactive goiter).
- To reduce goiter syndrome with thyrotoxicosis.
Of course, there is no need to be carried away with drugs, it can be quite dangerous, only the attending physician should prescribe medication with iodine. Iodine preparations have side effects and contraindications.
Вот список патологий и заболеваний, при которых йод может только навредить:
- туберкулез легких,
- проблемы с почками и печенью,
- период вынашивания ребенка и период лактации.
As for adverse reactions, iodine-containing drugs can trigger the following:
- inflammatory processes in the oral cavity and in the mucous membrane of the sinuses,
- inflammatory processes in the airways,
- conjunctivitis, reddening of the eyes and increased lacrimation,
- skin rash in the form of urticaria,
- Quincke swelling.
The dosage of tablets containing iodine can only be prescribed by a doctor, he must also determine the duration of the course of taking these drugs. So, drugs that contain iodine, are shown with a lack of iodine in the body. Of course, only a doctor can diagnose iodine deficiency, but you can also suspect it yourself:
- there is a cough that is not associated with other diseases and provokes the effect of suffocation,
- active growth of goiter, which begins to squeeze the airways,
- diagnosed infertility and impotence,
- there are problems with memory, to the extent that a person is unable to memorize simple things,
- the body’s immune defenses are noticeably reduced,
- causeless headaches appear,
- blood pressure gets low
- intellectual activity is falling,
- there is severe drowsiness.
Doctors found that during the day a person should receive 150 micrograms of this essential element for the body, if this does not happen, then the pathologies of the thyroid gland will not take long to wait.
The mechanism of iodine preparations in the body
The composition of iodine-containing drugs is a substance of potassium iodide, which refers to the trace elements that regulate iodine deficiency. Potassium iodide is a colorless substance of crystalline form, which smells of nothing and has a salty-bitter taste.
After potassium iodide enters the human body in the right dosage, it begins to increase the production of hormones, which has been reduced and disturbed due to the deficiency of the substance needed for this process. The active substance of the drug is completely absorbed for two hours, and then begins to be distributed in the spaces inside the cells. After all the necessary substances from the drug are absorbed by the body, potassium iodide deposits are excreted through the kidneys and through the secretory function of various endocrine glands.
The list of the most famous iodine preparations looks like this:
- Antistrmin and others.
Almost all of these drugs have a different form of release and a different dosage of the active substance, that is, potassium iodide. There are drugs intended for the treatment of children, there are for the treatment of adults, and there is for the prevention of goiter.
If a drug that contains potassium iodide causes the condition of the gland to deteriorate, the specialist should replace it with another one, or reduce the dosage. Therefore, independent and uncontrolled intake of iodine-containing drugs is unacceptable!
Side effects from taking such drugs may be as follows:
- digestive problems
- heart pathologies,
If there is an overdose of the drug, the oral mucosa may become brown. If atypical manifestations occur, urgent consultation with a physician is necessary.
Separately, it must be said about dietary supplements. Some of them are composed of biological substances containing iodine. It should be understood that in the treatment of thyroid disease, these drugs will be useless, they can not replace a medication. Dietary supplements are used as a prophylactic, in essence - this is a food additive. These drugs are made from vegetable raw materials or seafood, here are some of them:
To achieve a stable remission with the help of dietary supplements is possible, but full recovery is impossible.
Characteristics of iodine-containing drugs:
- Iodine-active. It compensates for iodine deficiency and prevents the development of thyroid disease, which may result from the lack of this element. The tool can be bought without a prescription. It is undesirable to take to people who do not have iodine deficiency, as in this case, nausea, upset stool and other side effects may appear.
- Jodbalans. Does not allow the occurrence of goiter, normalizes the size of the gland. It is not recommended for use in cases of suspected malignant processes in the thyroid gland, as well as in the treatment of the gland with radioactive iodine. There are a number of contraindications, including nodular goiter, thyrotoxicosis, toxic adenoma.
- Yodomarin. Allowed for use by pregnant women. It supplements iodine deficiency and helps fight goiter. The drug can enter into active reactions with other drugs, and therefore it is not recommended to take it simultaneously with potassium-preserving drugs, diuretics and lithium-based drugs. Contraindicated in hyperthyroidism and toxic adenoma.
- Potassium iodide. It is recommended to receive after removal of the gland, actively protects against radiation, is prescribed for thyrotoxic crisis. It is prescribed with great caution during the childbearing and lactation period.
- Thyroidin. Hormonal drug with iodine content. Restores the functionality of the thyroid gland, reduces the cholesterol level. It can provoke angina attacks, so it is prescribed with caution.
- Mercazolil. Appointed with diffuse goiter. A very large number of side effects and contraindications.
Features of iodine absorption by the body
Iodine can not be synthesized in the human body, it must come from the outside: with food, water, special preparations and additives. For an adult, the daily need for iodine is around 150 mcg, for athletes it is advisable to increase the dosage to 200 mcg.
Among the inhabitants of the "sea" countries rarely register diseases associated with iodine deficiency, because they are saturated with the main food from the sea - fish, algae, seafood. At risk of iodine deficiency are residents of the regions of the Far North and areas located in the center of the continents.
Iodine belongs to the chemical group of compounds called halogens. Besides him, this group includes fluorine, bromine and chlorine. The latter, by virtue of the rules of inorganic chemistry, are able to displace iodine from any compounds. Therefore, the use of chlorinated water, an excess of fluoride-containing agents for strengthening tooth enamel and the intake of bromine-containing preparations significantly reduce the amount of iodine in the body.
Specialists note that special substances contained in colorful, red cabbage, turnips, radishes, mustard, soybeans and rutabaga, block the absorption of iodine by the body. Therefore, they can not be eaten with iodine-containing products.
Elements such as manganese, cobalt, selenium, copper accelerate the absorption of iodine, so you need to worry about their entry into the body along with iodine along with food or dietary supplements.
The lack of protein in the body inhibits the synthesis of thyroid hormones, so the diet must include enough sources of complete protein.
Products that contain iodine
For iodine in the body, it is advisable to saturate your diet with food, which is a priority for residents of coastal zones: algae, sea fish, seafood. Portions of brown algae (fucus or kelp) are enough to get a daily dose of iodine. A lot of iodine in cod liver and fish oil. Up to 200 micrograms of element contain 100 g of seafood or sea fish. In addition, apples and their seeds are rich in iodine, feijoa, persimmon, potatoes, spinach, sorrel, cheeses and dairy products.
Many solve the problem of iodine deficiency through the use of iodized salt or special salt-free seasoning containing brown seaweed. Usually enough of the third part of a teaspoon of such seasonings to replenish the daily need for iodine. The choice of such seasonings today is huge, you can choose the preferred set of spices and spices for cooking meat, fish, vegetables.
The emergence of iodine
For the first time iodine was discovered in 1811 by B. Courtois - a French chemist. He began to heat the seaweed with sulfuric acid, thus obtained a new element of the periodic table. Iodine, as a chemical element, the rarest on the planet. Its share is 4 * 10 -5%. Despite this, it is found everywhere. Especially a lot of it in the seas, in the waters of the ocean, in the air of coastal zones. The highest concentration of iodine is in algae.
The content of this trace element in our body is very small, about 30 mg, but despite this, its value is great. Main functions:
- contributes to the normal functioning of the thyroid gland,
- participates in the energy metabolism,
- affects the maintenance of optimal body temperature,
- is responsible for fat and protein metabolism,
- necessary for the growth and development of the body,
- affects the stable state of the nervous system.
The role of iodine in the human body is difficult to overestimate. It affects the mental activity of the body, healthy skin, teeth, hair, nails. It is extremely important for the healthy growth of children, helps to develop mental abilities. Efficiency at the same time increases, excessive irritability decreases.
A child who has not received iodine in the womb, will have defects in the development of various organs. In the future, these children often suffer from developmental delays and psycho-neurological disabilities. With the usual size of the thyroid gland and a weak change in hormones it is very difficult to determine the disease of the goiter. If symptoms such as: headache, general malaise of the body, pain in the chest, reduction of emotional background, and it is not associated with another disease, you should be examined by an endocrinologist.
Iodine deficiency mainly affects those regions that live far from the maritime climate. In Russia, it is about 70% of the total area of the country. People need to independently monitor the consumption of food containing iodine. The value for the body is huge. Therefore, it is very important to know which products have iodine. Especially pregnant women and children. If the body lacks it, the goiter grows, the gland becomes large in size.
Manifestations of iodine deficiency:
- the risk of miscarriage,
- the child’s lag in development,
- the risk of cancer of the gland,
Signs of Iodine Deficiency
- Endometrial goiter.
- Lack of performance.
- Quick fatigue.
- Feeling irritable.
A simple test will help to recognize whether iodine is present in sufficient quantity in the human body. In the evening, wetting a cotton swab with an alcohol-containing solution, apply strips on a small area of the body. In the morning, look intently at the places where the solution was applied. If you do not find anything there, then accordingly, you need to urgently replenish stocks, consuming foods containing iodine. Well, if the iodine strips remain visible on the body, then it is not necessary to use it additionally.
Iodine content in foods
What foods have iodine? Interesting fact, most of them are under water. All kinds of freshwater fish, marine life, algae, shrimp and more. Most of the iodine people get with food. Foods rich in them can be of both animal and plant origin.
But there is another way to deliver it to the body. Through the air. The content of iodine in the products can not be compared with its concentration in the air. Very lucky with this residents of the coastal regions. In the sea air it is contained in large quantities.
Animal sources of iodine origin:
- fish - freshwater, marine,
- seafood - oysters, crabs, shrimps, sea kale,
- dairy products - butter, milk, cottage cheese, ryazhenka,
Plant sources of iodine:
- fruits - persimmon, apples, grapes,
- vegetables - lettuce, potatoes, tomatoes,
- berries - currants, cranberries,
- cereals - buckwheat, rye, wheat.
Reducing the content of iodine in foods contributes to their heat treatment, especially frying. Therefore, it is better to eat foods raw, and if possible, fresh.
What is iodine for a man?
The main consumer of iodine is the thyroid gland. It contains an overwhelming amount of all iodine, and certainly no less than half the total. The whole human body contains no more than 30-40 mcg of iodine. The thyroid gland must within a day catch and deliver to itself from 60 to 150 mcg of iodine for the production of hormones.
This can occur in different ways - for example, people in the depths of the continent receive iodine from food, while those living in marine areas, for example, in the Black Sea region, can in a day, breathing in the sea and salty air, get up to 100 μg of this valuable element through the lungs.
What is iodine for a man? Iodine is needed for the production of thyroid hormones, and they, in turn, lead to the following effects:
- Regulate the basal metabolism, the consumption of all energy compounds
- Control the pace of cellular respiration
- Set the temperature of the body (or rather, are engaged in moving the set point). It is necessary to distinguish the high temperature, which develops as a result of increased metabolism, from the high temperature that occurs during infections. In the first case, we are dealing with hyperthermia, and in the second - with a fever,
- Balances the exchange rate of carbohydrates, proteins and fats,
- Regulate the growth rate of the body and its neuro - mental development.
Iodine is one of the few trace elements that affects all processes in the body, and its lack, as well as an overabundance - can lead to the development of serious diseases, endocrine disorders, and even death (coma with myxedema and thyrotoxic crisis) .
Consider briefly some signs of iodine metabolism disorder. What are the symptoms of chronic or acute iodine deficiency?
Symptoms of iodine deficiency in the body, the consequences
Lack of iodine in the body can cause various symptoms - we will not dwell on cretinism, or the innate lack of iodine in endemic areas that occurred in the past. Whole family cases were described where the main symptoms were dwarf growth and mental retardation.
Now, with the use of iodized salt everywhere, this pathology has practically disappeared. But the bad word "cretin" remained, and firmly included in the lexicon. Now you know that the chance to see a real nerd in your whole life is extremely small.
But there is an acquired iodine deficiency. The most acute symptoms of iodine deficiency in the body are felt by women. It must be said that in general, it is women who are susceptible to endocrine diseases more often than men. After all, women have a very difficult "endocrine life."
It is associated with the ovarian-menstrual cycle, pregnancy, childbirth and lactation. And iodine is almost completely in charge of the work of the thyroid gland. Therefore, the lack of iodine in the body of a woman is especially noticeable, and leads to greater violations than with a deficiency in men.
In that case, if less than 10 mcg of iodine per day enters the body with an average weight of 70 kg, then there is talk of a lack of iodine. What signs indicate iodine deficiency? This condition is called hypothyroidism, or low thyroid function. In that case, if there is little iodine, then there is no possibility to produce the hormones T3 and T4 in the right quantity.
As a result, the main metabolism falls, and in severe cases, myxedema occurs. The manifestations of hypothyroidism induced by iodine deficiency include:
- Decreased body temperature
- Constant chilliness and drowsiness,
- Appearance of puffiness
- Violations in women from the hormonal cycle (dysmenorrhea, amenorrhea, uterine bleeding). Almost always decreases libido, in men erectile dysfunction occurs,
- Daytime sleepiness and insomnia appear at night, memory and attention disorders occur,
- Vegetatively-trophic changes appear (for example, stratification of nails).
If these symptoms appear, you should be tested for thyroid hormones, and if it turns out that hypothyroidism has occurred, you should start taking thyroid hormones on the advice of an endocrinologist, along with iodine preparations. Hormones first perform a replacement function and reduce the signs of hypothyroidism, and iodine preparations (which will be described later) eliminate the deficiency of this element.
In addition, adults develop diffuse euthyroid goiter. Euthyroid - means that goiter occurs against the background of normal hormone levels. And this testifies to hypertrophy of the gland, which seeks to compensate for iodine deficiency by “increasing the capacity” for its extraction from the blood.
How to compensate for iodine deficiency in the body?
In order to make up the iodine in the human body, it is not necessary to run to the pharmacy. To do this, it is possible to turn their eyes to food. Sources of iodine, which is in easily digestible, organic form, in products very much. We list some of them that will allow you to replenish the iodine deficiency with regular use of these products:
- Sea kale in a variety of forms,
- Fish (herring, cod, sardines, white halibut, haddock, catfish),
- Liver, milk, egg dishes,
- Много йода в обычной белокочанной капусте, в щавеле и луке, в том случае, если почву удобряют йодными удобрениями,
- Не стоит забывать о йодированной соли, которая при регулярном употреблении позволяет полностью решить проблему умеренного дефицита йода. Only two grams of this salt per day can saturate the body with iodine to the acceptable amount necessary for satisfactory thyroid gland.
This salt can completely solve the problem of even moderate iodine deficiency. The only inconvenience is that this salt cannot be used for home-made preparations, for example, for sauerkraut. It makes cabbage soft, non-crisp and dark. For blanks should use rock salt.
Iodine preparations should be taken only for those groups of patients who are at risk.
These include pregnant women, nursing mothers and babies with iodine deficiency. The rest of the healthy population can do without special preparations, using iodine, which comes from food.
Symptoms of excess iodine and their effects
But sometimes, the truth is much less common than the lack of - there is an excess of iodine. The maximum daily dose is 300 micrograms. After that, there are signs of excess iodine in the body, and even iodine poisoning.
- This may occur to those who like to drip iodine tincture and drink its solution.
There are people, especially illiterate, who believe that this is the only way to compensate for the lack of iodine. But it is inorganic iodine, which acts very roughly and can do more harm than help.
In addition, illiterate medical articles appear quite often in RuNet, in which micrograms (μg, or 0.000001 g), in which iodine load is measured, are confused with milligrams (mg, or 0.001 g). As a result, all numbers are increased 1000 times.
Let's result simple calculation. The standard 5% iodine alcohol tincture contains approximately 10 drops in one milliliter. If you take 1 ml per 1 gram, then one drop contains 0.1 g tincture, or 100 milligrams. If the concentration of iodine is 5%, then each drop contains 5 mg of iodine. However, the maximum daily dose is 300 micrograms.
- This means that one drop is enough for (5: 0.3) = 16 days, with the maximum iodine load, at the limit of absorption.
If we take the normal digestion figures (150 mcg), then one drop of the usual tincture is enough for a whole month, even under the condition of complete iodine deficiency.
But, unfortunately, it does not occur to anyone that you only need to dissolve one drop of iodine tincture in 3 ml of water, and use only one drop each day, for a month. People just do not think that iodine needs so little. Therefore, in the villages, where there is an extremely low sanitary culture and there is no money for drugs, people drip a few drops on the day of iodine tincture, and then they are surprised at the sharp deterioration in their health.
What are the signs of iodine overdose? Symptoms of an excess of iodine in the body include such manifestations as:
- Signs of hyperthyroidism appear: a bug-eye appears, goiter and severe tachycardia appear,
- The body temperature rises, exhaustion occurs,
- There is diarrhea, skin pigmentation.
Details of the symptoms of hyperthyroidism and thyrotoxicosis are described in the corresponding articles. In the case of a sharp overdose, muscle weakness, degeneration of the skin, abdominal pain, and vomiting also appear. In the event that a person has consumed about 2 grams of iodine (the maximum daily dose for 16 years), then death is possible.
But we hope that this will not happen. In the end, there are ways to check the amount of iodine in the body - how to do it?
How to check the amount of iodine in the body?
One of the simplest and mass methods that are suitable for identifying iodine deficiency disorders in a population, or in organized groups, is the study of the concentration of iodine excreted in the urine. If more than 100 mcg is released per liter, then there are no signs of iodine deficiency. Anything below indicates its availability. At the same time, moderate deficiency - from 20 μg, and severe - less than 20 μg / l.
This analysis with the construction of iodine median in daily urine should be applied very first, since it shows exactly how much iodine is in the human body.
In addition, there is a way to determine the concentration of iodine in the hair and nails of a person. This method can also be applied in forensic science, especially if you take into account the growth rate of hair and nails.
Some sites claim that it is possible to find out the amount of iodine in the body using a blood test for thyroid hormones. The logic of reasoning is such that if there is a lot of iodine, then there will be a lot of hormones, and vice versa. But it's not always the case. For example, with iodine deficiency euthyroid goiter, hormone levels of the gland are normal (euthyroid state), and iodine in the blood is very small and iron increases.
There are quite exotic, occult ways of determining iodine in the body, which simply border on obscurantism. Here is one of them. For example, if in the evening you apply an iodine mesh on the body, and in the morning it is no longer visible, or it has become very pale, it means that “iodine is not enough, since it has completely absorbed.” There is nothing to say about the diagnostic “value” of such methods. It’s a pity that there are naive and gullible people who, after such a "diagnosis", begin to poison their bodies with iodine tincture.
But we hope that after reading this article, you have an idea of the importance of iodine, the dangers of overdosing it, and the "ultramicroscopic" quantities in which the body needs it.