Today we’re going to talk about iodine.
And no, I’m not talking about the weird stuff doctors pour on cuts in war movies. If that’s the article you want to read, look elsewhere.
Instead, we’re going to talk about iodine as a nutrient. More specifically, how much your body critically needs it.
Iodine is absolutely vital for your thyroid gland to function properly. Your iodine controls your body’s growth as well as its metabolism, and when things go wrong with your thyroid they go really wrong.
If you’re not getting enough iodine, you’re going to run into fatigue, depression, lethargy, high cholesterol, and thyroid gland swelling. Not good.
Want to avoid it? Then you need to eat enough iodine. Here are 22 foods that will help you do just that:
Cod fish is a delicious white fish known for its mild flavor. It’s a great source of calcium, magnesium, potassium, and Vitamin E, as well as an amazing source of iodine. You get 66% of your daily amount of iodine in just a 3 ounce serving.
When most people think about milk, they think about Vitamin D and calcium. However, milk is good for a lot of other nutrients too – including iodine. Just a cup of milk will give you 37% of your daily recommended value.
3. Dried Seaweed
If you’re suffering from an iodine deficiency, chances are you’ll be told to eat more dried seaweed. Just a quarter ounce of it has enough iodine in it to last you a month (not that you can absorb all of it at once, most of it would go to waste). Eat small amounts of it and never worry about an iodine deficiency again.
4. Baked Turkey Breast
Want some good news about turkey? (Besides the fact that it’s delicious). Just 3 ounces of turkey breast gives you 23% of the daily value of iodine. Plus, you’re getting B-vitamins, phosphorous, and potassium.
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5. Fortified Iodized Salt
A lot of people get iodine and salt confused – so let’s set the record straight. Salt is a crystal made of sodium and chloride, while iodine is a mineral. However, you can find salt that has been enriched with iodine, so if you’re not getting enough, make sure you’re using a fortified iodine salt.
Food that you get from the ocean is an amazing source of iodine, and shrimp is no exception.
If you eat just 3 ounces of shrimp, you get 25% of your daily recommended value of iodine, as well as a good amount of protein and calcium.
When most people think of the health benefits of yogurt, their minds go straight to calcium and protein. However, they’re also an awesome source of iodine – just a cup contains 58% of your daily value.
8. Baked Potatoes
If you want all the best nutrients in potatoes, go with baked rather than mashed. That’s because the skin of the potato is where you’re going to find the nutrients you need, like fiber, vitamins, and potassium. More good news? Just one baked potato will give you 40% of your recommended daily value of iodine.
9. Himalayan Crystal Salt
This type of salt is great if you’re worried about getting enough iodine in your diet. Just half a gram contains over 150% of the iodine you need in a day – so you can enjoy responsibly and still get all the iodine you need.
10. Dried Prunes
You might think that prunes went out of fashion with your grandparents, but the truth is that they give you awesome stuff like fiber, vitamin A, vitamin K, boron, and – oh yeah, iodine in spades.
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11. White Bread
Many people think that white bread is unhealthy, and it’s true that without moderation it’s not good for you. However, two slices will give you 30% of your daily value, which isn’t bad at all.
If you’re feeling low on energy, bananas are a great way to restore your energy quick because of all the potassium they give you. They also give you a bit of iodine, which is a great bonus to get in such a delicious and healthy snack.
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Who doesn’t love the taste of strawberries? In addition to a host of vitamins and minerals, strawberries also give you 10% of your daily iodine value in just a one cup serving.
14. Canned Corn
Corn is served a lot of different ways, but if you want to boost your iodine intake, skip the cob and creamed varieties and stick to canned corn. You get 10% of your daily value from a half cup of the canned stuff.
15. Navy Beans
Everyone could use more beans in their diets just for how good they are for you, and navy beans are no exception. Just a half cup of navy beans gives you vital nutrients like iodine, calcium, protein, copper, potassium, and folate. That’s a lot more than just iodine in a healthy package!
16. Fish Sticks
While they’re not the healthiest option, fish sticks are still a great choice if you want to raise the iodine levels in your body. Two of them give you about 25% of your recommended daily value.
17. Tuna In A Can
If you’re looking for iodine from your canned tuna, pick the stuff that’s canned in oil rather than water – it has more iodine. 3 ounces of canned tuna will give you 11% of your daily value – plus protein, Vitamin D, and iron.
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18. Boiled Eggs
Hard boiled eggs are an awesome breakfast option (or really any meal) that will give you Vitamin A, D, antioxidants, calcium, and zinc. Plus, one hard-boiled egg contains 10% of your iodine value for the day.
ok – so lobster isn’t the cheapest snack, but if you need more iodine in your diet, it’s a great option. You can get 67% of your recommended value from 100 grams of the underwater delicacy.
20. Cheddar Cheese
Who doesn’t love cheddar cheese? Personally – it’s my favorite of all the cheeses. And now there’s a new reason to love it: it’s got iodine to help balance your diet. An ounce will give you 8% of your daily value.
While some people might be put off by the sour taste of cranberries, the truth is that they have great amounts of vitamin C, K, and fiber in them.
Plus, they will give you 267% of your daily value in just 4 ounces of the tart fruit.
22. Green Beans
If you really need just a bit more iodine in your diet, reach for some green beans. One tiny half cup serving will net you 2% of your recommended value, plus they’re chock full of vitamin C, folate, and potassium as well.
The Best Iodine Rich Foods
- Dried seaweed
- Baked turkey breast
- Fortified iodized salt
- Baked potatoes
- Himalayan crystal salt
- Dried prunes
- White bread
- Canned corn
- Navy beans
- Fish sticks
- Tuna in a can
- Boiled eggs
- Cheddar cheese
- Green beans
If you loved this article, then check out these other must-see related posts:
Seaweed: The Green Superfood You’re Not Eating — But Should Be
Iodine: The Goldilocks Mineral
Seawood is good, but it s hard to digest, seaweed kelp it good, just stick it in some food that your cooking. I keep seeing that cranberies have about 400 microgms iodine per 4 oz. Where does that number come from?
I never knew how important iodine is to the body. Anything that deals with the thyroid gland should be on the top of your list!
I usually do not worry about what is in the foods that I eat. I just want to eat good food and leave it at that!
I would be worried. There are so many things that you would NOT want in your body. It helps to be educated about food.
I know people that have suffered due to problems with their thyroid. The end result is not fun. They may not have know about the iodine and how important it is.
Himalayan Crystal Salt is getting pretty serious :)
Do you think you lose the benefits of the foods on this list when you cook them, or prepare them in some ways?
The thyroid is very important to having a healthy lifestyle, so I think anything that you can do to improve that, you should be considering!
Tuna in a can! Yuck. Good thing there is plenty of other types of iodine rich foods on this list :)
A lot of things in your body are based on how healthy your thyroid gland is. IF these foods help, it would be dumb to skip eating them.
Iodine huh? Well, it is good for your body and I guess if you need it, the best way to get it is through the food it is already in. Does not get much easier than that!
When you need to have iodine in your diet, these are a great start.
As a dietitian, I would have to agree with you!
Does anyone know what happens to your body when you are low on iodine? I am just curious because it could make a difference in someone’s health.
As a nutritionist, I can easily agree with this list. Great work!
What would you say is the most important one from this list?
Well, each day I start with a cup of yogurt and some bananas. According to this, there is plenty of iodine getting into this body!
I usually have my sushi wrapped in seaweed, so that is a good thing right? Since I am a vegetarian, that takes a few things off this list, but I still have some options, right?
It is amazing what the body needs to function, don’t you think?
Yeah, there is a lot of other things your body is made up from and when we were taught this in school, iodine was not one of them :)
I used to like milk, but now it seems like my body cannot handle it as well. Do you know why that would be?
You could be lactose? Could that be the problem? Maybe try some other types of “milk” and see how your body reacts to that.
I wonder what is so important about iodine for my body? Then I read this and look at all of that information. It is crazy what ONE thing can do for your body.
WOW! That Himalayan Crystal Salt has a lot of iodine. Do you think that you could overdose if you accidentally has too much?
Why does our body need iodine?
LOL. Did you even read the post? The information is right there for you. Iodine is very important for the health of your thyroid!
I have a very healthy lifestyle and many of the foods on this list I have had before. My body is a good mix of the natural chemicals that I need to survive and that is a great feeling. Thank you for posting about these!
Iodine is good for you? I never knew that. I guess it pays to know a little about everything, compared to a lot about nothing huh?
LOL. I guess you are right. Education is a big part of knowing what your body needs to survive!
ALL of these are great foods if you can fit them into your diet. Excellent list!
I never knew our bodies needed so much iodine. Thank you for the article, it is very helpful!
Taking care of your thyroid is very important!
At first I was going to freak out because I thought it was all about meat. Being a vegetarian is hard enough where I am from.