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Med J Aust. 2010 Oct 4;193(7):413-5.

Iodine toxicity from soy milk and seaweed ingestion is associated with serious thyroid dysfunction.

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University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia.


We report a series of cases of thyroid dysfunction in adults associated with ingestion of a brand of soy milk manufactured with kombu (seaweed), and a case of hypothyroidism in a neonate whose mother had been drinking this milk. We also report two cases of neonatal hypothyroidism linked to maternal ingestion of seaweed made into soup. These products were found to contain high levels of iodine. Despite increasing awareness of iodine deficiency, the potential for iodine toxicity, particularly from sources such as seaweed, is less well recognised.

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