Thyroid UK

Thyroid and iodine nutritional status: a UK perspective

Thyroid and iodine nutritional status: a UK perspective

Why does nothing ever seem to move forward?

Although I am very wary of high dose iodine regimes, without a shadow of a doubt we as a population need our basic iodine levels to be adequate. It doesn’t seem to be on anyone’s agenda to do anything about it. Except, possibly, the supermarkets which sell products from Poland and Germany which are often made with iodised salt.

Thyroid and iodine nutritional status: a UK perspective

Mark Vanderpump, consultant physician⇑

+ Author Affiliations

Department of Endocrinology, Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK

Address for correspondence: Dr M Vanderpump, Department of Endocrinology, Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, Pond Street, London, NW3 2QG, UK. Email:


Iodine is an essential component of the thyroid hormones, which play a crucial role in brain and neurological development. At least one-third of the world's population is estimated to be iodine deficient predominantly in developing countries. Recently concern had also been expressed about the iodine status in industrialised countries such as the UK. A recent survey of the UK iodine status found that that more than two-thirds of schoolgirls aged 14–15 years were iodine deficient due to the reduced milk intake. Maternal iodine deficiency in pregnancy is correlated with cognitive outcomes such as intelligence quotient and reading ability in offspring. No randomised trial data exist for iodine supplementation in mild-moderate iodine-deficient pregnant women. It is possible to combine population interventions to reduce population salt intake with salt iodisation programmes in order to maintain adequate levels of iodine nutrition.

That link gets you the full paper.


4 Replies

It is difficult to understand why nobody wants to do anything. PR


Sorry, its not difficult.... Without iodine there is more chance of the population needing medication. Ker Ching! ( that's the sound of a cash till)

Also, we don't want a population of independent free thinkers.... Much better to have a population of people so tired and ill that they obey, and die young too..... That way no one queries why the people at the top are creaming off the money.

Guess I have my cynical head on this morning. :-).



I don't understand why we're not given iodine to correct our thyroid issues...?


Because not all thyroid conditions are caused by iodine deficiency, and getting too much iodine is as bad - if not worse - than too little.

Hashi's, for example, is not caused by iodine deficiency, it's an autoimmune condition. Giving iodine to Hashi's people can make them ten times worse - as I know only too well!

You should never take iodine without having your iodine and selenium tested - iodine to make sure you ARE deficient, and selenium to make sure you're NOT deficient.

You shouldn't go piling on the iodine as if it were vitamin C. It's definately not a case of : some is good so more is better. You have to have just the right amount.

Hugs, Grey


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