(UK) Vegetarian diet blamed for thyroid issues
- [Scotland on Sunday]
A VEGETARIAN diet has been linked to the soaring number of Scots
suffering from thyroid problems.
The latest official figures show that NHS Scotland spent £8 million
treating thyroid conditions in 2011 compared with just £2.2 million in
2001. Over the same decade, the number of prescriptions for thyroid
problems soared from 1.2 million to 2.2 million.
Experts believe a lack of iron from reduced red meat consumption and
large amounts of soya in some vegetarian meals has contributed to the
increase of more than 300 per cent in Scotland’s thyroid drug bill.
Lyn Mynott, chief executive of charity Thyroid UK, said a lack of
proper nutrition and a meat-free diet were contributing to a rise in
the numbers of people seeking support.
Peter Taylor, senior lecturer in physiology at Dundee University,
agreed that a diet with high levels of soya, and low in foods
containing iron, can be a cause of thyroid problems.
But William Shand, chairman of the Scottish Vegetarian Association,
said: “The vegetarian diet is far healthier than a meat-based diet and
these claims are just another example of scaremongering.”
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