19 Million Infants Are In Jeopardy Of Developing Brain Lesions Due To Diets Poor In Iodine

19 Million Infants Are In Jeopardy Of Developing Brain Lesions Due To Diets Poor In Iodine

Globally, approximately 19 million infants are in jeopardy of developing persistent brain lesions which lead to a lower cognitive function than normal. However, these brain lesions are preventable and are produced by a diet poor in iodine.

The lack of iodine can reflect in the kids’ Intelligence Quotient

This new discovery has been made by the United Nations researchers and was published on Thursday by the UNICEF and GAIN (Global Alliance of Improved Nutrition).

In their report, the researchers reveal that lack of iodine in intrauterine life and in the early years of life could lead to neurological dysfunctions which also reflects in the kids’ IQ which will be by up to 10 points lower than normal. Besides, psychological disorders may also be caused by a diet poor in iodine.

“The nutrients a child receives in the earliest years of life influence their brain development for life and can make or break their chance of a prosperous future. By protecting and supporting children’s development in early life, we are able to achieve immense results for children throughout their lifespan,” explained Roland Kupka, the nutrition adviser from the UNICEF.

South Asia and Africa are the most affected countries by the lack of iodine in infants’ diets

The UNICEF and GAIN report, suggestively named “Brighter futures: Protecting early brain development through salt iodization”, revealed that 4.3 million infants suffering from reduced brain development are from South Asia.

Paradoxically, South Asia has 87% iodized salt coverage, even though is the leading region at childhood reduced brain development.

At the opposite pole, there are East and South Africa regions with only 25% of the inhabitants having the possibility of consuming iodized salt. Thus, approximately 4 million infants are suffering from iodine deficiency in East and South Africa.

The most important stage of kids development both physically and mentally is starting with the birth and last until the second anniversary. This period is the most important one in terms of diet which should contain the necessary vitamins, minerals, and nutrients for harmonious development, both physically and mentally.


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