9 important symptoms of iodine deficiency
Nature took great care of man, making it possible to make up for the deficiency of nutrients from food, the environment, and water. However, people did not appreciate this gift. Pollution of air, water, production of non-natural products led to various unpleasant consequences. One of them was iodine deficiency. Why is this trace element needed? And what are the consequences of its lack?
Why does a person need iodine
Iodine is a water soluble trace element. It is found in many foods (in shrimp, seaweed). They are rich in sea air and water. In the human body, iodine is responsible for the proper functioning of the thyroid gland. Thanks to this microelement, the most important hormones are synthesized – thyroxine and triiodothyronine. They provide the correct course of metabolism, cell division, heat transfer in the body and many other functions.
If we talk about iodine, then it participates in the following functions:
stimulation of metabolic processes;
normalization of the brain;
ensuring normal growth (this is especially true for children);
prevention of hypothyroidism (a thyroid disease associated with insufficient production of hormones).
Everyone should regularly receive iodine. The daily norm of the element is 130-150 mcg. For pregnant women and nursing mothers, the daily dose increases to 170-200 mcg.
How iodine deficiency appears: 9 important symptoms
According to doctors, about a third of the world’s population suffers from iodine deficiency. This problem is relevant for residents of Europe. The reason for the lack of trace elements lies in poor ecology, unhealthy nutrition. And we are talking not only about products, but also heat treatment that destroys iodine.
There are no nutrients in processed foods.
Another reason for reducing the element in products (cereals, vegetables) lies in the use of various fertilizers in their cultivation.
Regardless of the reasons leading to a decrease in the concentration of iodine in the body, an element deficiency is usually manifested by the following symptoms.
If there is enough iodine in the body, then the thyroid gland produces the necessary amount of thyroxine. This hormone serves as a stimulant of metabolism. With active metabolism, calories are burned in a timely manner, and the body receives the necessary energy.
Iodine deficiency leads to disruption of the thyroid gland. In the body, the hormonal background changes, hypothyroidism develops. Metabolism slows significantly. Calories obtained are not burned in full. Food that is not transformed into energy settles in the form of fat deposits.
Weight gain does not always indicate hypothyroidism and iodine deficiency. There are many other reasons that can lead to obesity. Therefore, you need to analyze the symptoms comprehensively, and not separately.
Slowing metabolism leads to a feeling of constant fatigue. Moreover, this feeling appears in the morning and does not depend on the amount of work performed. Of course, it is important to make sure that fatigue is not caused by a prolonged lack of rest or excessive stress.
Fatigue can be a symptom of iodine deficiency.
Feeling of weakness
Against the background of a slowdown in metabolism, muscle tissue function deteriorates. A person feels difficulty in doing ordinary things. It is difficult for him to lift even not very heavy objects.
Thyroid hormones are actively involved in cell division and renewal. With hypothyroidism, a deficiency of necessary hormones occurs. The skin cells, without receiving the necessary nutrition and hydration, dry out and die. This process manifests itself in the form of dry skin, excessive peeling.
Profuse hair loss
Excessive hair loss may indicate a lack of iodine in the body. The hormones synthesized by the thyroid gland provide for the strengthening and renewal of hair follicles. In the case of hypothyroidism, the bulbs cease to be updated in a timely manner. Therefore, a person begins to actively lose hair.
If you do not attach importance to this symptom, then after a while you can notice a significant thinning of the strands.
Another symptom characteristic of iodine deficiency is a chronic sensation of cold. Without an important trace mineral, the thyroid gland is not able to produce thyroxine in sufficient quantities. And this hormone is responsible for the natural heat transfer in the body. People with hypothyroidism are constantly freezing.
A constant feeling of cold is an alarming symptom.
Decreased intellectual ability
Hormones produced by the thyroid gland ensure normal brain function. If they are synthesized in sufficient quantity, then a person is easily trained, quickly remembers new information.
With a deficiency of hormones (and this situation may occur amid a lack of iodine), problems with memory and learning begin. These processes are in most cases reversible. And as soon as the level of iodine is restored, the person will again feel the ease of learning.
Element deficiency is very dangerous for pregnant women. Lack of nutrients can lead to fetal death or the birth of a mentally retarded child.