Pregnant Women Need More Iodine

Pregnant Women Need More Iodine
Pregnant Women Need More Iodine

Pregnant and breastfeeding women need 1.5 to 2 times more iodine daily than other women. Pregnancy produces an overall increase in thyroid activity, therefore the need of thyroid hormones for iodine also increases, since much of the hormones consists of iodine; so if there is deficiency, the thyroid doesn’t produce enough good quality hormones, said Dr. Fereydoun Azizi, head of Research Institute for Endocrine Sciences, affiliated to Tehran’s Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences.

Also during lactating, some amount of iodine excretes through breast milk.

“The need for pregnant or lactating women isn’t met through iodized salt consumption. Therefore, the health ministry should add 150 micrograms of iodine to pills taken by pregnant and lactating women,” Mehr news agency quoted Azizi as saying.

 Severe Deficiency

The results of studies indicate that in 7 provinces, including Tehran, especially in southern parts, there is severe iodine deficiency.

About 23 years ago, extensive efforts were made in the country to make salts iodized. But gradually with the absence of adequate supervision, the quality of salt deteriorated, and what is available today is not up to the mark.

Azizi also pointed to the increasing rate of diabetes in the country and said inactivity, obesity and malnutrition are the main causes. “Also high blood pressure and smoking are among the risk factors,” he added.