Iodine intake during pregnancy

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As a pregnant mother you must be wondering what are the most suitable types of foods to be eaten in order to facilitate healthy growth of your unborn child as well as to make sure you can face the challenges and demands of pregnancy with ease. Out of all these nutrients, iodine plays a vital role in the development of the unborn child.

 

What is iodine?

Iodine is a a chemical element which is vital to the body for the production of the thyroid hormone. As we discussed in an article before, this hormone is making sure a lot of body functionalities are carried our appropriately, without allowing the systems inside your body to crash. We even compared the thyroid to a gear box that helps you control a vehicle. Iodine is not produced inside your body. Therefore, you need to get iodine from a food source to allow the body to produce thyroid hormones effectively. 

Why do you need iodine during pregnancy?

While helping your body to produce thyroid hormone, this chemical element helps your baby to develop the brain and the nervous system. We all know it is extremely important that the baby's brain and nervous system gets developed well, so that the baby will become an intelligent and sensible human after birth. If the sufficient amount of iodine is not received by a pregnant mother, there will be a very high risk of the baby becoming mentally challenges and having other complications.

How much iodine is needed while you are pregnant?

A pregnant woman is said to need about 220 micrograms of iodine per day and breast feeding women need even more at 290 micrograms per day. This amount of iodine can be absorbed to the body from the food that will be part of your diet. If not, the doctors will have to prescribe you a certain amount of iodine in the form of supplements.

What are the food Sources that Give Iodine?

Lot of food items you may consume on a regular basis will contain iodine. Most common sources are yoghurt, baked potato with skin, milk, egg, shrimp and sea water plants. Especially the sea water plants/vegetables contain large quantities of iodine. However all of us are not fortunate enough to have a regular & reliable supply of sea vegetables. Because of that we can rely on the most common and powerful sources such as egg and milk. If your doctor recommend you low cholesterol and low fat diets, select low fat yoghurt & non fat milk. Apart from above, if you can find Cod is an ideal and abundant source of iodine. If you are vegetarian; navy beans, sea vegetables, baked potato with skin as well as iodized salt will be helpful to you. But always remember that the vegetarian sources contain lesser percentage of iodine compared to non-vegetarian options, so you will have to increase intake of such vegetables to compensate what you are missing. Also remember that excessive salt intake is not good if you try to depend on iodized salt for your iodine supply.

What if your food is not supplying enough iodine?

In this case you will have to get the advise from a doctor who will prescribe a suitable iodine supplement. Most of the pre-natal vitamin mixes will include iodine also at the rate it is needed for your everyday functioning. Always make sure that you meet the doctor for advise before taking any supplement.

What are the signs of Iodine Deficiency? 

If your body is not receiving the sufficient quantity of iodine on a daily basis, you will start seeing the signs of thyroid deficiency as well. These are, enlarged thyroid gland, fatigue, weakness, depression, intolerance to cold and weight gain etc.

Considering all of the above, try to make your meals rich with egg, milk, sea weed, boiled potato with skin etc as much as possible. In the mean time remain alert about any thyroid deficiency symptoms too. If you are a woman planning pregnancy, you can definitely get advise from a doctor if there is a need of prescribing iodine/vitamin supplements.

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ඔබට ඇති වෛද්‍ය ගැටළු අසන්න මෙහි ක්ලික් කරන්න, Ask a Doctor | වෛද්‍යවරයාගෙන් අසන්න

 

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මෙම ලිපිය ඔබට ප්‍රයෝජනවත් වුනානම් හෝ ඔබේ මිතුරියකට ප්‍රයෝජනවත් වේ යයි සිතනවානම්, කරුණාකර පහත ඇති "recommend" ක්ලික් කිරීමෙන් එය බෙදා හදා ගැනීමට අමතක කරන්න එපා. තවද, මෙම ලිපිය පිළිබඳව ඔබේ අදහස්, යෝජනා සහ අනෙකුත් මවුවරුන්/කාන්තාවන් හට ප්‍රයෝජනවත් වන ඔබේ අත්දැකීම් පහත ලියා තැබීමටද අප ආරාධනා කරමු. ස්තුතියි!

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මෙම ලිපිය ඔබ වෙත ගෙන එන්නේ ලංකා හොස්පිටල්ස් ආයතනය වෙතිනි. This article was brought to you by Lanka Hospitals PLC.





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