In the hopes of improving her chances of having a boy, a Chinese woman from the sub-provincial city of Wuhan overdosed on kelp, a seaweed known for its high concentration of iodine.
Identified only by her surname Liu, the woman substituted all her meals with only kelp for two weeks after following advice she found on a trending online article, reports CCTV News.
The write-up reportedly advised that eating only alkalescent food like kelp and marine algae would increase the chances of women developing a male child.
Liu and her husband, who already have a 6-year-old daughter, were hoping to have a boy to carry on the family name.
On the second week of her unusual diet, Liu felt discomfort and exhibited palpitations and abnormal sweating. Doctors would later diagnose her symptoms as indicative of hyperthyroidism, a condition caused by excessive intake of iodine.
In such cases, the thyroid gland becomes overactive and secretes excessive amounts of thyroid hormone, speeding up the body’s processes and causing the patient to experience nervousness, anxiety, rapid heartbeat, hand tremor, excessive sweating, weight loss, and sleep problems.