Although extreme iodine deficiency was eradicated in the United States practically a century in the past after the introduction of iodized salt, iodine consumption has declined in latest a long time. “Public health efforts to limit salt intake to decrease cardiovascular risk, in conjunction with increasing use of kosher salt and sea salt (neither of which contain iodine),” could in half be guilty. Not including salt to meals is a superb factor, as sodium is thought-about the second main dietary killer in the world (second solely to not eating sufficient fruit), however in case you do add desk salt, be sure that it’s iodized. “It is a myth (often also false advertising) that ‘natural’ sea salt contains significant amounts of iodine.”
Fruits and greens present iodine, however the quantities can range relying on the place it’s grown and the way a lot iodine is in the soil. Because iodine is notably essential for fetal mind improvement, there’s a suggestion that “all US women who are pregnant, lactating, or even planning a pregnancy should ingest dietary supplements containing 150 mcg of potassium iodide per day,” which I focus on in my video Iodine Supplements Before, During, and After Pregnancy.
Is there proof they’re not getting sufficient? We’d prefer to see urine ranges over 150 mcg/L in pregnant ladies, however in the United States, pregnant ladies solely common about 125 mcg/L. For instance, a latest survey in New York City confirmed solely about half of pregnant ladies had been making the minimize.
Don’t most pregnant ladies take prenatal nutritional vitamins, although? Only about half of prenatal multivitamins include any iodine in any respect, and so solely about one in 5 pregnant ladies in the United States are following the suggestions of the American Thyroid Association to take a every day iodine complement, particularly in the type of potassium iodide quite than seaweed, as the degrees in seaweed are topic to pure variability. Though the iodine content material was as a lot as 90 p.c off in a number of the potassium iodide prenatal dietary supplements, the kelp dietary supplements different even wider, off by as a lot as 170 p.c.
Now, the American Thyroid Association admits it doesn’t have proof that the present borderline insufficiency ranges are resulting in undesirable outcomes and so its rationale that each one pregnant ladies take iodine dietary supplements is a bit tenuous. Until such knowledge can be found, although, it figures higher protected than sorry.
A randomized, placebo-controlled, interventional trial would reply the query as soon as and for all, however the current proof for iodine supplementation throughout pregnancy is so convincing that it could be thought-about unethical to randomize pregnant ladies to a placebo.
When it involves ample iodine consumption throughout pregnancy, I’d suggest: Just do it.
Women eating plant-based diets could discover this video of particular significance: Pregnant Vegans at Risk for Iodine Deficiency.
This isn’t to say sea greens aren’t good for you in their very own proper. See Which Seaweed Is Most Protective Against Breast Cancer?.
For extra movies on having a healthy pregnancy, see:
Michael Greger, M.D.
PS: If you haven’t but, you possibly can subscribe to my free movies right here and watch my stay, year-in-review shows: