Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Goitrogen

Any substance or product such as soy, millet, or alkaloidal plants such as the cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, turnips, and kale) that may cause thyroid enlargement and/or formation of a goiter. Specific agents include goitrin, thiouracil, thiocyanate, and isothiocyanate. These chemicals inhibit the formation of thyroid hormones and specifically interfere with iodine metabolism, causing the thyroid gland to enlarge in an effort to produce more of these hormones.

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