|Photo from Wikicommons|
Our country wasn't the only one with the goiter problems. During the late 1800s several scientists were doing experimental work using iodine to combat goiters. By 1915 a Swiss doctor, Dr. Bayard, experimented with school children. He used salt, containing a small amount of iodine, in their diet to find out if it made a difference. He could see the goiters decrease the longer he used the iodized salt in their food. When he stopped using the iodized salt, the goiters would increase in size. By 1922, Switzerland passed a law requiring iodine to be used in salt throughout the entire country.
David Cowie, chairman of the Pediatrics Department at the University of Michigan, conducted a similar study in his state in 1922. When he found the same results, he urged Michigan to adopt the iodized salt solution for their goiter outbreak and developed the Iodized Salt Committee to push the same solution nationwide. On May 1, 1924 iodized salt was available on grocery shelves in Michigan.
I remember my grandma talking about goiters when I was little. I'm glad we don't share this problem with our grandparents/great-grandparents. Now I know why it's important to choose iodized salt when I'm in the grocery store.
It has also been shown that a lack of iodine during pregnancy can influence the mental health of a baby. It has been linked to difficulty with mental processing, coordination, extreme fatigue, and depression. Maybe we could use that excuse when a doctor tells us to cut down on our salt intake.
Please pass the salt.
Information taken from Why iodine is added to salt and History of US Iodine Fortification