7 Foods Rich in Iodine

Iodine Foods - Kelp

The thyroid gland synthesizes thyroid hormones and iodine is an essential trace mineral that is crucial for the thyroid to function properly. Eating foods rich in iodine ensures the thyroid is able to manage metabolism, detoxification, growth and development.

Research has shown that a lack of dietary iodine may lead to enlargement of the thyroid gland, lethargy, fatigue, weakness of the immune system, slow metabolism, autism, weight gain and possibly even mental states such as anxiety and depression.

The good news is that there are many popular foods with iodine, all of which are easy to incorporate into your daily diet.

The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for iodine is 150 micrograms daily for everybody over the age of 14. The RDA for children ages 1-8 is 90/mcg every day, ages 9-13 is 120/mcg every day. If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, it is recommended that you get 290/mcg every day.

Iodine Rich Foods

1. Sea Vegetables

The ocean hosts the largest storehouse of iodine foods, including Kelp, Arame, Hiziki, Kombu, and Wakame. Kelp has the highest amount of iodine of any food on the planet and just one serving offers 4 times the daily minimum requirement. 1 tablespoon of Kelp contains about 2000/mcg of iodine, 1 tablespoon of Arame contains about 730/mcg of iodine, 1 tablespoon of Hiziki contains about 780/mcg of iodine, 1 one inch piece of Kombu contains about 1450/mcg of iodine, 1 tablespoon of Wakame contains about 80/mcg of iodine. I recommend sprinkling these into soups or salads.

2. Cranberries

This antioxidant rich fruit is another great source of iodine. About 4 ounces of cranberries contain approximately 400/mcg of iodine. I recommend buying fresh organic berries or juice. If you buy cranberry juice from the store, be aware of how much sugar it contains.

3. Organic Yogurt

Probiotic Foods - Yougurt

A natural probiotic, yogurt is an excellent iodine food you should add to your diet. One serving holds more than half of your daily needs. 1 cup contains approximately 90/mcg of iodine. Other than yogurt, here is a list of probiotic foods you should consider incorporating into your diet for added health benefits.

4. Organic Navy Beans

Many beans are a great food source of iodine and navy beans may top the list. Just 1/2 cup of these beans contain about 32/mcg of iodine. Beans aren’t just an iodine food, they are also incredibly high in fiber.

5. Organic Strawberries

This tasty red fruit packs up to 10% of your daily iodine needs in just a single serving. One cup of fresh strawberries has approximately 13/mcg of iodine. Try buying fresh, organic strawberries from your local farmer’s market, they do not disappoint!

6. Raw, Organic Cheese

Cheese is high in iodine, along with essential B vitamins, calcium, and protein. One ounce of raw cheddar cheese contains around 10-15 mcg of iodine. [1] Goat’s milk cheese is easier on the digestive system and contains slightly higher levels of calcium and protein. Dairy, whether raw or pasteurized, may not be the best choice for some people, especially those with sensitive digestive systems or individuals adhering to a vegan and/or vegetarian diet.

7. Organic Potatoes

The common potato is an easy addition to most meals and is one of the richest sources of iodine in the vegetable kingdom. Leave the skin on and one medium-sized baked potato holds 60/mcg of iodine. Be sure to get organic only as potatoes tend to suck up pesticides very easily!

Iodine Supplements

If you’re not a fan of the iodine foods listed above, then you can always take an iodine supplement. There are many different types of iodine supplements on the market, so knowing the differences between each is vital. I recommend a transformative nano-colloidal detoxified nascent iodine supplement, which the body is quickly able to turn into its own effective mineral iodides for maximum absorption.

- Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, ND, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM


  1. National Institute of Health. Iodine. Office of Dietary Supplements. Fact Sheet for Health Professionals.

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  • S S

    If I were you I’d limit the soy intake. Too much soy is NOT good for the Thyroid. A friend in TX developed Throid tumors and the gland had to be removed.
    Blames it xompletley on the soy. Don’t believe it? Check out Soy and thyroid cancer online in your search box.

  • S S

    Jeffery true, there’s a link between soy and Thyroid cancer.

  • MrDschr .

    the sea kelp now has radiation along with mercury and arsenic.

  • Brandy

    I have heard that soy mimics estrogen in the body; so when you eat a ton of soy to replace meat and other animal products, you’re dumping a bunch of hormones into your body.

  • ghc_health

    You heard correctly, Brandy. That’s why I recommend everyone avoid soy.
    -Dr. Edward Group

  • Nadia DeRouen

    Thanks for the info, a healthy approach and natural healing is the way to go

  • Nadia DeRouen

    Is it ok to take Kelp capsules while taking levothyroxine for my hypothyroidism?

  • Rothschilld

    Thank you Dr. Group.

  • ghc_health

    Thank you!

    -Dr. Edward Group

  • Lemurette

    where did you find this information? I’ve been searching for months… thanks in advance for sharing your source.

  • Sheila

    I just found my favorite natural healing web-site. Excellent information!
    You make this fun too! TY

  • ghc_health

    Thanks for joining us, Sheila!

  • NCAlexandria12

    Know where your kelp comes from. Radiation in the Pacific is affecting those sources. Some Atlantic kelp have tested positive to certain contaminates. Do some research before buying.

  • Suman Hari

    Astrologer :9833186345 :

  • Suman Hari

    Astro Healer : 9833186345 :

  • orlendatube .

    HAVE YOUR IODINE LEVELS CHECKED! I also have hypothyroidism…but my iodine levels are too high and THAT can cause thyroid issues (thyroid suppression leading to hypothyroidism) as well…its a balancing act to keep those levels correct! also-I recommend doing exercise that not only helps you body, but your mind as well for the depression. I took up hiking and being is nature is a great cure for depression! Corn mazes in the fall are also great fun and can stimulate your mind while you workout! Geocaching is also a great way to add a fun activity to hiking-its a GPS based treasure hunt!
    swimming is also a good method of exercise because it takes the strain off your joints.
    also-My massage therapist swears by Young Living’s Thyromin capsules…BUT it does have iodine in it so check your levels first!
    Massage therapy can help with a stiff achy body (have you been worked up for OTHER causes of that? Like auto-immune diseases or Lyme (There are 3 blood tests for Lyme and you should get all 3 to make sure you are negative!)?) As well weight loss helps with body aches. You can take epsom salt baths as well-you need at least 2 cups in the avg size tub for it to be effective but epsom salts are pretty cheap.
    Heat and ice can also help-sometimes alternating them works wonders!
    Have you tried medication for the depression? Not my first choice but may improve your mood and help you stick to diet and exercise.
    I hope you feel better!

  • JJ

    Thank you so much for this. My Dr. has ignored my weight gain due to “peri menopause”. I work out in the pool an hour and a half daily. because of joint pain. now I have muscle spasms. I gained 25 pounds in two months with a very healthy diet. I am not eager to get on meds that are permanent. My medical insurance is Kaiser and they only put in effort when you are in crisis. Then it is great medicine. Even Weight watchers can’t get my weight down as I am eating very healthy. I have increased the selenium with brazil nuts. Now what?

  • Sr Citizen

    As stated above. “Himalayan salt is PINK salt and has no iodine in it. Gray salt is French salt and comes from the sea and is a good source of iodine.”

  • Stephen Dickens

    Ive had some concerns over a few things,,like the new health fad for sea salt for one. But if the sea has so much radiation in it now, would not sea salt, as in salt from the sea be a bad thing? And how about kelp and such from the ocean for iodine, that to most likely would contain the radiation. And Ive heard a lot of other salts come from the ocean as well.

  • roxy

    there is “lethal” dosage and there is the less lethal -> “causes hypothyroidism” dosage.. do you know your numbers so that you know if you are taking a ‘non-lethal hypo/erthyroid causing dosage? …

  • wendy

    Does a hypothyroid person need more iodide or less?

  • ghc_health

    A person whose thyroid underperforms due to insufficient iodine may benefit from supplemental nascent iodine.

  • Fukushima

    The ocean is a dumping ground i don’t think any ocean anywhere can claim to be pristine since the atom bomb tests and now Fukushima.. May i suggest to the Dr. to invest his nascent iodine to be grown indoors to guarantee its purity.

  • ghc_health

    True but the properties of iodine give it natural defense against radioactivity.

  • Mel

    I saw you mention Himalayan Salt. Is that the Himalayan pink salt? Also, what’s the difference between that and the Redmond Sea Salt?

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    Himalayan crystal salt is the pink salt, it’s mined from the Himalayas. Sea salt comes from the sea.

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    Not likely. Sweet potatoes contain goitrogens, which, when eaten raw, prevent iodine uptake by the thyroid gland.

  • Joy

    Strawberries are on all the lists of goitrogenic foods to avoid for thyroid problems. So does their high iodine content counteract their bad goitrogenic affects on the thyroid making them okay to eat?

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    It’s not likely to matter much unless you’re eating massive amounts.

  • Lindyrose

    I’ve read that soy is the most genetically modified food in the world. My body reacts negatively to soy so I avoid it. My symptoms are: I feel ‘down’ and every joint in my body (even those in my fingers) hurts.

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    Soy is terrible and can mess with your hormones. I avoid it at all costs.

  • Patty

    I, too, at 59, started having allergies i never had before and even worse seasonal allergies than I’ve ever had in my life. I am presently avoiding Corn, corn syrup, corn cereals, tortilos, pop corn, corn chips, etc. and have at least managed to stay out of the ER with Duck Lips and swollen face for a year now. Even buy butter from the milk of grass-fed cows, only grass fed ground beef. Fortunately, we have restaurants here that brag about serving the local grass fed beef, even a burger joint.

  • David Weiss

    most health insurance policies do not pay nutritionists to advise us as a means for prevention and healing of illness because the Mafia drug industry and AMA stop them. It is a racket to keep you ill while they become rich Sad but true.

  • Seeta

    I am pretty sure HImalayan PInk Salt does not contain iodine. People in these regions tend to develop goiter, and enlargement of the thyroid.

  • yahright

    Oh ok, as long as you’re pretty sure. That’s enough for me to base my health decisions on.

  • Kim C.

    Hi Dr. Group.
    I lost my thyroid at 19, and breasts at 43 both due to cancer. On replacement, I am speedy, but have all the symptoms of hypo.
    Looking for a way to make me feel better. Will iodine help or hurt?

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    Hi Kim,

    I wouldn’t be able to say if iodine will or won’t make you feel better but if it were me, it’s something I’d explore. Iodine is necessary for good health, even if you’ve lost your thyroid.

  • SirGalahadT

    Who says frying cancels the benefits?

    Does frying destroy the iodine?

    I suggest frying in home-rendered lard or tallow – not in unnatural vegetable oil

  • devin felix

    Is potatoes the most important source

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    I’m not sure there’s a source that’s most important but some sources are better sources than others… because of iodine content as well as other factors like overall nutritional makeup.

  • Jennifer

    I have hypothyroidism..So should I avoid eating cooked sweet potato too…

  • JagT

    My “girl” doctor advised me to stay away from soy…anything….with the history of breast cancer in the family and the fact that soy has been found to behave like artificial hormones, which have been found to lead to the disease…careful with soy!

  • Carolyn Stokes

    My son had constant diahrea and the MD said his thyroid was a little off so he put him on medication. That’s all the MD could find out of sorts and 3 months later he still had the runs real bad. Went to another doctor and he said that he had Ulcerative collides. They gave him medicine for that but no one took him off the thyroid medicine. He doesn’t eat salt so I’m thinking his thyroid is off due to lack of Iodine but I don’t know. The MD keeps changing his medication and lately he has anxiety very bad.

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    Sounds like a diagnosis mish mash… I might seek out a third opinion.

  • Christine

    Would you know how much iodine is in a 1/4 c of cranberry juice?

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    By no means is this absolute but 4 ounces may contain about 400 micrograms of iodine.

  • http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/ Global Healing Center

    Milk is a source of iodine, but not everyone is a fan of dairy.

  • http://www.the-end.com Don

    Hi Dr. Group,
    Where do you come up with the figure of 500mcg of iodine per gram of Himalayan Crystal Salt. All the literature I’ve been able to uncover points to 0.1 g/kg or 100mcg/gram. There is quite a difference in these figures and I would like to know the truth of the matter, there should not be that much variation in the iodine content of this salt. Some, such as Dr. Mercola state that Himalayan salt is not a reliable source of Iodine and that other sources must be relied upon if using only this salt in one’s diet. Any clarity to this issue that you could provide would be appreciated! Thanks!

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