Free UK Delivery

Iodine: What You Need To Know

August 26, 2020

Iodine: What You Need To Know

Did you know that iodine is a vital nutrient for cognitive function? Found in fish, some dairy, fruit, vegetables and seaweed! We've put together an FAQ on iodine to help you get the low down on this vital mineral.

Iodine: What You Need To Know

What is iodine?

Iodine is a naturally occurring mineral used in many bodily processes including growth, metabolism and brain development. It is often mentioned when discussing thyroid problems, as it is a key ingredient in making thyroid hormones. In chemistry, it is classified as the heaviest and least abundant 'stable halogen', only being found in 0.46 parts per million of Earth's crustal rocks.

How does iodine affect cognitive function?

Thyroid hormones help your brain grow and develop by interacting with neural cell receptors, influencing the migration, differentiation and signalling of neural cells. These are vital processes which allow the brain to function and develop. The important thyroid hormones cannot be made without iodine, therefore iodine is extremely important for healthy cognitive function. Some research has even found that not getting enough iodine can affect productivity and even reduce IQ points by up to 15 points.

How much iodine do I need?

It is recommended that adults consume around 140 micrograms (μg) of iodine a day, in order to maintain a healthy level. This level increases to 200-220 micrograms for those who are pregnant or breastfeeding and decreases for children. 90 micrograms of iodine is recommended for children aged 1-8 years of age, and 120 micrograms for those aged 9-13 years.

How can I get iodine into my diet?

Many foods are a source of iodine including some fish, dairy items, fruits, vegetables and seaweed. Below is a breakdown of some foods and their average iodine levels / percentage of recommended daily intake.

  • Cod (120g) - 230 μg / 
  • Cow's milk (200ml) - 50-100 μg / 
  • Seaweed Crisps (18g packet) - 33 μg
  • Eggs (1 egg) - 25 μg / 
  • Prawns (60g) - 6 μg / 
  • Nuts (25g) - 5 μg / 
  • Bread (1 slice) - 5 μg / 

Our crunchy Seaweed Crisps contain c.20% of your recommended daily intake of iodine, therefore making them a tasty and easy way to get iodine into your diet.

Can I get enough iodine on a vegan diet?

Yes! There are many plant-based sources of iodine, as well as supplements. Check out our blog post on the top 5 vegan sources of iodine.

Check out our full range of superfood snacks here.