In this health video you will learn about the role of iodine in thyroid health.
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Lee Swanson: Dr. Langer, I think the one nutrient most people associate with thyroid health is iodine. One of the major sources of iodine in the American diet is salt. What role does iodine play in thyroid health? And how do you feel about iodized salt adding iodine to salt as a supplement? Dr. Stephen Langer: Well, iodine is crucial for the manufacture of thyroid hormone. Fortunately well, there's some controversy, so some people will disagree with me but right now, the common thought is that most people don't need more than 120 micrograms which is millionths of a gram of iodine a day in order to keep their iodine healthy. I mean, there is a new school of thought, which I am aware of, which feels that 120 micrograms is like a lot of the other vitamins and minerals, way too low and people should be taking milligram doses because people are walking around with gross iodine deficiencies. That may or may not be true; I just don't know as of yet. But I find that if most people use a little bit of salt that contains iodine, they're getting all the iodine they need. In one of the other segments, we mentioned the autoimmune thyroid condition. I find that people with autoimmune thyroiditis who take large doses of iodine, thinking that they're going to help their gland, actually cause their gland to be really out of balance and I have not found that people to this day need more than the recommended daily allowance.