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Iodine is one the most important chemical elements to man. Humans normally get iodine from food products which accumulate it from the ground and water. There?s a lack of iodine in the ground of a bigger part of Russia. Average iodine consumption is 3 times below the required amount in Russia. The greater the lack, the more destructive are the consequences.

The consumption of iodine falls behind the norm by 3 times in Russia, according to information revealed at a hearing held today in the State Duma of Russian Federation. It focused on issues relating to prevention of diseases caused by a lack of iodine.

Tatiana Yakovleva, Chairwoman of the Duma Committee for Health Protection, spoke of the dangers arising from the lack of iodine in the daily diet. Gennady Onischenko, Head of the Federal Service for the Protection of Consumers? Rights and Well-being advised the deputies that the lack of iodine results in high rates of the endocrine diseases reaching up 15 percent among the city dwellers and up to 40 percent among the countryside residents.

Even a relatively low lack of the iodine consumption brings down the intellectual capacity of the whole population. It?s a serious threat to a nation?s intellectual and economic potential. Russia will be losing 44 billion roubles in economic losses due to lack of iodine consumption if no effective prevention policy is adopted.

Insignificant lack of iodine leads to some problems with mental abilities which aren?t very obvious. The lack of iodine can be filled with vitamins in the cities and with sea food in the coastal areas. The farther from the coastline, the higher the lack grows. It goes up to 40-80 percent in the villages and mountainous regions. The consequences are really scary: the spread of endocrine diseases among the grown-ups and children, eyesight and hearing impairments, pregnancies ending in miscarriages and stillborn children, higher rates of mentally deficient children. According to estimates by the WHO, a nation? s intellectual potential is lowered by 10-15 percent if the spread of diseases relating to a lack of iodine consumption reaches goes above 10 percent.

The problem has been around for many years. At the beginning of the last century, the doctors found the link between the endocrine conditions and the iodine content in the human body. Around the same time they came up with a simple and effective way to tackle the problem. Iodizing salt is the best method of prevention. A large-scale salt iodination had been conducted in the USSR until the ?80s came around and the planned economy became history.

The participants of the hearing recommended that the government draw up and introduce necessary motions to the State Duma to tackle the national problem of the iodine deficiency. They believe that funds for research of prevention methods should be allocated in the 2005 federal budget.

Besides, recommendations were made to the Health Ministry and Social Development to maintain uninterrupted monitoring of the quality and safety of food items enriched with iodine derivatives and raise the awareness of the population, as reported by RIA Novosti News Agency.


© Рудаков В.Г. - NEKTO 2009г.

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