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December 24, 2015

Young women of childbearing age are the most susceptible to the adverse effects of iodine-deficiency and even mild deficiency may have an impact on the developing brain of foetuses and young children. It can also cause goitre. According to the World Health Organisation, iodine-deficient communities have IQs up to 13.5 points lower than similar but iodine-sufficient communities.

Researcher Dr Mark Vanderpump, Consultant Physician and Honorary Senior Lecturer in Diabetes and Endocrinology at the Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust said:

"Our data suggest the UK is now iodine deficient, warranting a full investigation of the UK iodine status. We need to look into this now to decide whether public health bodies need to step in.

"The World Health Organisation has made iodine-deficiency a global priority and has been campaigning for at-risk countries to add iodine to their salt, a campaign which has been very successful. If it turns out that we do have a problem, this could be the most viable solution.

"We are very concerned about these findings as the consequences of iodine-deficiency are grave: iodine-deficient communities score lower in IQ tests, and even mild iodine-deficiency during pregnancy can cause serious mental impairments in children."

Source: endocrine-abstracts/ea/0025/ea0025oc3.8.htm