Cretinism occurs in children whose diet lacks iodine. A cretin is a dwarfed child who is mentally retarded, has an enlarged thyroid gland and defective speech, and a gait that is clumsy. His skin is rough, and hair, sparse. Such a child usually has brittle nails, bad teeth, and is prone to anemia.
Among adults, myxoedema can result from an iodine deficiency, affecting the adequate production of the thyroid hormone. The symptoms of this disease are a slower rate of metabolism, thickening of the skin, loss of hair, and general physical and mental sluggishness.
A dietary lack of iodine may lead to anemia, fatigue, lather’s, loss of interest in sex, a slow pulse, low blood pressure, and a tendency towards obesity.
Iodine is very important to life. The thyroid gland can manufacture the hormone thyroxin only from organic iodine taken through the mouth.
Healing Properties Of Iodine
Small doses of iodine are of great value in the prevention of goiter in areas where it is endemic, and are of value in treatment in the early stages. Larger doses have a temporary value in patients with hyperthyroidism who are being prepared for surgical operation.
There are no known toxic effects from natural iodine. However, iodine as a drug can be harmful if prescribed incorrectly.