A new study has concluded that, for pregnant or breastfeeding women, taking a supplement of iodine might boost your unborn baby’s IQ and improve both their lives and the nationwide economy. A small amount of iodine has been found to provide a seemingly meaningless increase in the IQ, but that slight difference is quite far from insignificant.
Around 1.9 billion people and 241 million school-aged children between the ages of 6 and 12 years old live in the 32 countries that are considered to nationally suffer from iodine deficiency. A small supplementation could result in millions more for the country’s yearly economy and greater earning potential for your child’s adult life.
According to the study’s co-author, Kate Jolly, a Public Health professor at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom, iodine deficiency is still, to this day, the main cause of worldwide preventable retardation.
Even a mild shortage is found in well developed nations, such as the UK, where a slight increase could save the National Health Service (NHS) quite a lot due to a person’s increase in lifetime earnings and lowering the public sector costs.
Iodine is not naturally produced by the body, but an adequate level can be achieved by the consumption of a well balanced diet rich in dairy or seafood. However, many countries have seen a decline in sales for the first and not all have access or an attuned food pallet for the second. It has led to a widely spread unfortunate phenomenon where people have lowered their iodine intake, which effectively affects their economy.
Supplements could be the answer and it has been converted to IQ points in order to properly see the enhancement in a child’s development. During pregnancy or breastfeeding, an intake of iodine supplements could increase the baby’s IQ by 1.22 points, which has been further converted into monetary benefits.
It would increase the economy of the NHS with around £200 per expectant mother and later on by almost £4,500 per baby during their lifetime, due to the extra point that would increase the child’s academic potential and lifetime earnings. Given that there are approximately 700,000 births per year only in England and Wales, it could benefit the NHS with £140 in just one year, and £3.15 billion to UK’s economy.
According to the study’s author, food alone might be enough to provide the necessary amount, so it’s advised for soon-to-be mothers or women with young infants in iodine deficient countries to enhance their intake with supplements.
It might serve the country’s economy, but it could also improve the quality of their child’s life, which is the high point for any expecting parent.
Image source: nineentertainment.com.au
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