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Foods Containing Iodine | Fruits, Vegetables Rich In Iodine

We all know that table salt contains iodine. Have you ever wondered why? The truth is that including iodine in table salt was an international effort to ensure that everyone gets the required quantity of iodine. We require only trace amounts of iodine in our regular diet but this tiny amount is extremely important for the healthy functioning of the body, especially the health of the endocrine gland, or the thyroid. It was the large spectrum of iodine deficiency disorders (otherwise known as IDD) that forced authorities to ensure that iodized salt is made available to everyone. The solution was simple because almost everyone includes salt in his/her food.

Foods Rich In Iodine – Seafoods

Salt contains iodine and a bag of chips contains a LOT of salt, so does that mean that chips are good for you? Well, not really. While iodized salt does help curb iodine deficiency to a large extent, too much salt, and in the case of a bag of chips too much saturated fat, can actually be very unhealthy. Moreover, if you’ve been advised to reduce your salt intake due to an underlying health condition, it’s important to find other sources of iodine. There are other foods containing iodine that you should consider adding to your diet. In fact, numerous studies suggest that there are areas where iodine fortification programs are simply not adequate, and both vegetarian as well as non-vegetarian diets that exclude fish, seafood, and seaweeds are largely deficient in iodine. For most people, iodine rich seafood such as sea bass, cod, perch, and haddock is the best source of this nutrient. For vegetarians, kelp is a vegetarian seafood alternative to plan a diet rich in iodine. While there are no specific iodine rich foods for kids, dairy does contain a good amount of the nutrient, and you can get a little creative to make some delicious smoothies and healthy shakes for your children. These would not only take care of their iodine needs but also ensure that they get other vital nutrients as well.

Preparing Healthy Meals with Iodine Rich Fruits; Vegetables

While seafood is recommended for meeting your iodine needs, there is also a growing concern with regard to mercury poisoning. Fortunately, there are also some iodine rich fruits and vegetables that you can add to your daily diet. Potatoes, for instance, are a favorite with everyone. A side of boiled or mashed potatoes with your meals gives you enough carbohydrates, while also taking care of your iodine requirements.

Strawberries, organic navy beans, and cranberries are also healthy foods that contain iodine. A small serving of frozen organic yogurt is a good probiotic source that also contains iodine. If you want, you can make this even healthier by adding your favorite fruits to it. It’s an excellent dessert choice for both you and your kids.

Benefits of Iodine:

Iodine is the most essential component of the thyroid hormones and as a result is required for the healthy functioning of the endocrine gland. The thyroid gland is extremely important because it regulates growth, mental development, and a lot of other vital functions in the body. A deficiency of iodine is associated with a large variety of disorders and is considered one of the largest causes of preventable brain damage in both children and adults.

Iodine Supplements

The salt iodization program ensures that the average person meets his/her iodine requirements and so doctors rarely need to recommend iodine supplements. There is no single comprehensive list of iodine supplements and you should be cautious about any dietary supplement that contains significant amounts of iodine. This is because the side-effects from excessive iodine intake can be severe and there is a definite possibility that the supplements could interact with your medications. You can also find more iodine nutrition facts here:

References:

  1. http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Iodine-HealthProfessional/
  2. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002421.htm