Iodized salt as a Public Health tool.
Worldwide, over 650 million people suffer from goitre due to a lack of
iodine, and more than 20 million are affected by some form of mental
disability simply because their food and drinking water contain insufficient
iodine. In France, cases of cretinism (in the medical sense of the term)
associated with this deficiency and confined to certain regions of the
country, were still being reported until quite recently. The WHO, which for
years has recommended that iodine should be systematically added to table
salt, has conducted a study in 7 African countries which shows the definite
advantages of adding iodine.
Although a shortage of iodine in the diet does pose a serious health problem
in 118 countries, we should remember that sufficient quantities of this
substance are found naturally in the foods we eat every day - fish and
seafood, dairy products, meat and eggs, not forgetting sea salt, which is an
excellent way of extending the beneficial effects of our holidays.