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Foods rich in iodine: its function in the body, what are the consequences of a deficiency or excess of iodine. The recommended daily doses and which foods contain this precious micronutrient.
Iodine is an essential micro-element for our body as it is essential for the synthesis of thyroxine and triiodothyronine, the hormones produced by the thyroid gland responsible for the body's metabolic processes. It cannot be synthesized by the human body and as such must be taken through certain foods. A deficiency of iodine negatively impacts thyroid function resulting in the development of various physical and mental disorders.
Iodine, recommended daily dose
To ensure that the thyroid is functioning efficiently and producing the useful amounts of thyroid hormones, it is essential that everyone (children, adolescents and adults) gets the right amount of iodine every day. Below are the recommended amounts to ingest based on age:
- 0 to 6 months: 110 mcg per day
- 7 to 12 months: 130 mcg per day
- Up to 6 years 90 mcg per day
- 7 to 12 years: 120 mcg / day
Teenagers and adults
- From 14 years up: 150 cubic meters / day
- Pregnant women: 220 mcg / day
- Lactating women: 290 mcg / day
As can be seen, the recommended doses vary according to age and other factors, such as pregnancy. In any case, it is always advisable to ask your doctor for advice
Foods rich in iodine
The best way to guarantee our body the right daily iodine requirement (but this applies to any micronutrient) is to follow a balanced diet that includes a wide variety of healthy foods. In this regard, it is good to know which foods are richest in it. So let's see the foods with the highest iodine content.
We cannot define it as a food, but it is the richest condiment in iodine: 1900 mcg per 100 grams. The content is high but consumption must be limited. It has the same appearance as table salt and does not have particular odors or flavors, nor does it alter that of the foods to which it is added. We recommend that you store the iodized salt in a cool place, away from light and humidity to avoid iodine loss
The sea is the main source of iodine and algae have a very high content of it. Several varieties of edible seaweed come from the sea: kelp, arame, hiziki, wakame and nori. Beware, however, of the consumption of these algae! Considering their high iodine content, it is good to be careful not to exceed the recommended doses since the functioning of the thyroid gland can also be altered by excessive consumption of iodine.
Blueberries have a high content of antioxidants and vitamin C but also have a good amount of iodine. With about 1oo grams of blueberries we can take 40 mcg of iodine.
Fish and seafood
In addition to algae, fish, shellfish and crustaceans also have a good iodine content: they contain an average of 50 to 100 mcg of iodine per 100 g. Cod is among the fish with a high iodine content: 170 mcg per pound. Another fish rich in iodine is mackerel: 255 mcg of iodine per 150 grams. Tuna has a fair amount of iodine: 50 mcg for each pound. This is followed by sardine and hake with 30 mcg of iodine per hectogram.
Mussels and clams are good iodine: 140 mcg per 100 grams. In shrimp we have 90-100 mcg of iodine per 100 grams, the quantity varies if it is frozen shrimp or not; fresh ones contain more.
In addition to being a good source of protein and calcium, cheeses have a fair amount of iodine, which varies according to the type of cheese: camembert, montasio, gorgonzola and gruyere and pecorino about 40. Parmesan about 35 mcg and ricotta about 15 mcg They are also a source of protein and calcium.
Useful recommendation: excessive iodine consumption also leads to symptoms similar to those of iodine deficiency. It is good to pay attention not to abuse in the consumption of food supplements or foods that contain it.