According to Dr. Wikipedia the word “iodine” comes from the Greek word for “violet-colored,” and here’s why:

Many people connect iodine and salt, but are there iodine mines, like salt mines? Does it just occur in food? Why do we need iodine, anyway?

Besides kelp, iodine is extracted from a hardened sedimentary formation called caliche.

But the up-and-coming way to get iodine is by drilling for underwater iodine-saturated brines. And guess where these are very common–Oklahoma!

Not all the drilling going on there is for oil.

However, according to the US Geological Survey 2018 mineral commodity summary (PDF download here, the United States still imports almost 90% of its iodine from Chile. Japan is also a global supplier.

Why do we need iodine in our bodies? It’s very interactive, as we saw above, and this enables our bodies to make T3 and T4, two very important thyroid hormones.

First iodine goes atomic in little apparatuses in your follicles…wait. Pictures are worth a thousand words (iodine shows up at about three and a half minutes in):

Healthcare professionals also use iodine in several different ways.

Featured image: Yodo Sublimandose, CC BY-SA 3.0

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