Though salt is necessary for human life, overconsumption contributes to heart disease and other problems. However, modern table salt addresses a separate health concern: iodine deficiency, which can cause mental retardation and goiter, an enlargement of the thyroid gland. A century ago, goiter was so prevalent around the Great Lakes that the area was considered part of a goiter belt. Doctors pushed for adoption of a Swiss tactic of adding iodine to table and cooking salt, and Morton Salt began selling its iodized salt in 1924.
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