Sources of Iodine in Food

Written by beth wankel
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  • Introduction

    Sources of Iodine in Food

    It is important to have the right amount of iodine in your diet to ensure that your thyroid gland is in good working order. Without enough iodine, you may develop thyroid disorders, brain disorders and even suffer multiple miscarriages. If you experience fatigue, weakness, weight gain or depression, it's possible a lack of iodine is to blame. Here is a list of some ways to get your iodine from the food you eat.

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    Processed Foods

    Processed foods sometimes have iodine added to them, which increases their iodine content. Such foods include iodised salt (table salt, though sea salt is a good source as well) and bread made with iodised dough conditioners (most commercially prepared bread). Iodised salt is the most effective way to get iodine from food, but be careful not to overdo it with the salt as that can lead to other health problems.

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    One of the best natural sources of iodine is kelp and other sea vegetables. Kelp contains the natural, elemental form of iodine, and is very rich with iodine. Just one small serving per day gives you well over 100 per cent of your daily needs for iodine. Kelp can also be found in a capsule form to be taken as a supplement.

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    Dairy products, specifically cow's milk and yoghurt, are good sources of iodine. From one serving of these products you can receive 40 to 60 per cent of your daily value of iodine. Mozzarella cheese is also a good source, but contains only about 6 per cent. Often, the cows have grazed on grass grown in iodine-rich soil, and that carries over into the dairy products.

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    The amount of iodine that fish can give you varies between species and also relies on the iodine levels in the water. However, most fish contains some iodine, especially ocean fish. Fish can be a good source of iodine, but should be combined with another source for you to fulfil your daily needs. When it's taken as a dietary supplement, you can also get iodine from cod liver oil.

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    Other Sources

    Other foods that are very high in iodine include eggs, strawberries and vegetables grown in iodine-rich soil. Fortified foods such as cereals often contain some iodine, and information on that can be found on the nutrition label. Also, there are small amounts of iodine present in tap water, with the amounts varying based on where you live.

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