Do I Need to Use Iodized Salt?


| 7/23/2015 4:25:00 PM


Tags: salt, diets, health, essential nutrients, Linda B. White,

Morton Salt

“Do I need iodized salt in my diet?”

Without knowing your location or diet, my answer is a qualified “yes.”

We obtain iodine from food grown in soils that contain it, but large areas of the world’s soils lack sufficient iodine. So, seasoning your food with iodized salt is the best way to be sure you’re getting as much of this essential nutrient as you need.

Iodine has one main function in the body: The thyroid gland, a butterfly-shaped gland nestled at the base of the throat, needs it to make thyroid hormones, which affect every cell in the body by regulating metabolism. They’re also critical to optimal growth and development, including that of the skeletal and central nervous systems in fetuses and infants. According to the National Institutes of Health, iodine may also have a positive effect on immune function and in preventing fibrocystic breast disease.

If a person becomes iodine-deficient, his or her thyroid gland will enlarge to form a “goiter.” Other symptoms of an underactive thyroid, called hypothyroidism, include fatigue, constipation, cold intolerance, depression, dry skin and hair, weight gain, and muscle weakness. In 1924, the iodization of table salt in the United States successfully addressed deficiencies caused by the consumption of foods grown in soils lacking in iodine. Before that, illnesses due to iodine deficiency were widespread throughout the Great Lakes, Appalachians and Northwestern regions — known as the “goiter belt.”


maehah
7/10/2017 9:16:53 AM

it would be very helpful to have a map of areas with low iodine in the soil. are there other factors at work? do needs vary by gender or ethnic group? what about meeting iodine needs thru diet--how much fish or sea weed is enough? are there other iodine-rich foods?




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