8 Iodine-Rich Foods to Improve Thyroid Health

In order to provide the body with all the nutrients it needs to be healthy, it's essential to maintain a balanced diet, which includes the following foods in moderate and sufficient quantities.
8 Iodine-Rich Foods to Improve Thyroid Health
Elisa Morales Lupayante

Reviewed and approved by the pedagogue in physical education and nutritionist Elisa Morales Lupayante.

Last update: 30 May, 2022

Iodine is an essential mineral for the proper functioning of the thyroid. Any disruption of the functioning of this gland has a negative impact on the health of the body in general. In this article, we’ll reveal some iodine-rich foods to boost your health. We also recommend that you consult with your health care provider before introducing them into your diet.

The importance of iodine for the thyroid

The thyroid gland is, according to this study carried out by the Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, responsible for storing minerals essential for the synthesis of thyroid hormones. These have the function of regulating metabolism, detoxification, and growth.

Iodine deficiency in the body often leads to the development of a condition known as hypothyroidism. This condition involves a decrease in the production of thyroid hormones.

This imbalance causes serious consequences in the body, including excessive weight gain, tiredness, and irregular menstrual periods. Fortunately, some foods contain significant amounts of iodine, and can prevent the body’s iodine levels from decreasing, as stated in this research from the University of Oslo (Norway).

Hypothyroidism can be detected with a blood test, and so it’s essential to go to the endocrinologist to explain the symptoms we’re suffering from so that they can prescribe the most appropriate treatment.

Here are the best iodine-rich foods to improve thyroid health.

Iodine-rich foods

1. Blueberries

Iodine-rich foods.

According to this research conducted by the University of São Paulo (Brazil), blueberries are one of the most recommended fruits to look after our bodies, thanks to their antioxidants. It’s estimated that for every 4 ounces (113 g) of this fruit we get up to 400/mcg of iodine.

Eating them on a regular basis would support our metabolism by regulating thyroid function. It is suggested to eat them in their natural state, either in salads or smoothies.

Discover more here: How to Grow Blueberries at Home

2. Natural yogurt

Natural or organic yogurt is a probiotic that can be included in the diet. This food contains a little more than half of the iodine that the body needs daily, about 90/mcg per cup.

In addition, its cultures would support intestinal function by restoring the bacterial flora, as this study conducted by the VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, claims. However, we recommend avoiding using sugar to sweeten it.

3. Himalayan salt

Many people are trying to reduce their consumption of conventional table salt as much as possible. They are also trying to absorb enough iodine from other foods.

According to popular belief, to replace table salt, one could turn to Himalayan salt, which provides 250 mcg of iodine, which is more than 150% of the recommended daily allowance. However, as with other types of salt, it’s essential that you moderate its consumption to avoid side effects.

**There’s no scientific evidence to show that Himalayan salt is more suitable for regular consumption than other types.

4. Cod

Some cheese.

Cod is a fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, and minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, and iodine. Every three ounces of cod (85 g) provides 99 micrograms of iodine, which translates to about 66% of the body’s daily requirement.

It’s low in fat and calories, and it’s also one of the best supplements to a healthy, thyroid-friendly diet. Combine it with vegetables and you have the perfect menu.

5. Strawberries

These berries are delicious, versatile, and contain essential nutrients that strengthen the body’s defenses, according to this study conducted by the University of Cordoba (Spain). Although they’re sweet, experts believe that they may be appropriate for improving thyroid health because of their significant iodine content.
One cup of strawberries contains 13 mcg of iodine, about 10% of a person’s daily requirement. Combine them with yogurt and you have the perfect mix.

6. Beans

Some beans.

Green beans, are a healthy type of vegetable that can be incorporated into all types of diets. We recommend not boiling them too much so that they do not lose their nutrients.

Regular consumption provides the body with small amounts of iodine that can be used to stimulate thyroid function. Half a cup of this vegetable provides 3 mcg of iodine, a net 2% of the recommended daily value.

7. White beans

Beans in all varieties are a food source that can supplement the diet. However, among all our iodine-rich foods, white beans top the list of those that are good for regulating thyroid function. In addition, some research claims that white beans contain more bioavailable iron than kidney beans.

A half-cup of white beans contains up to 32 mcg of iodine and very few calories. They’re also good for digestive health because they contain fiber.

We recommend reading: Two Different Ways to Make Bean Salad

8. Potatoes

Some potatoes.

The common potato is one of the most consumed foods in the world and also a source of iodine that can be found in the plant kingdom. One potato, skin and all, provides about 60 mcg of iodine when baked.

In summary

Incorporating these foods into your diet is one of the healthiest ways to give iodine to your body, especially your thyroid.

However, we shouldn’t base our diet on these foods alone. We should include them in moderation and, if in doubt, consult a nutritionist.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.