Nutrient Information: Iodine, I

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Nutrient Key Information 
Nutrient Name: Iodine, I
Nutrient Category: Minerals
Measuring Unit: µg
Nutrient Summary: Iodine makes thyroid hormones which controls the body's metabolism, and also for proper brain and bone development during pregnancy and infancy.
Nutrient Function: Iodine helps thyroid hormone production. Thyroid hormones regulate many key biochemical reactions, including protein synthesis and enzymatic activity, it is critical determinants of metabolic activity. Thyroid hormones' key functions are:

• Thyroid hormones involve the regulation of various enzymes and metabolic processes. It helps body to digest foods and convert them into energies and nutrients needed for our bodies.
• Regulate growth and development, especially fetus, infants, and children's brain and nervous system development.
• Control the rate at which the cells use oxygen, they influence the amount of energy expended during the basal metabolism.

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Food Sources

The iodine content of most food sources is low. The iodine amount can be affected by soil iodine content, irrigation, and fertilizers.

• Iodized salt: Iodized salt is mandatory in Canada and optionally used by more than 50 percent of the U.S. population.
• Seafood and seaweed: marine animals can concentrate iodine from seawater.
• Eggs
• Dairy products, such as milk, yogurt, and cheese
• Some processed foods which contain added iodized salt or calcium iodate, potassium iodate, etc. during the processing.

• Pregnant women need about 50% more iodine than other women to provide enough iodine for their baby.
• Some foods contain goitrogens which interfere with the way the body uses iodine. These foods include cassava, soy, cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower and brussels sprouts).
• Iron deficiency reduces the effectiveness of iodized salt, so iron and iodine dual fortification is beneficial.

Sample Foods High in: Iodine, I
View Additional Food Sources
Food Description Nutrient Amount1 Daily Value%2
Salt, table, iodized
Category: Spices and Herbs
5,080 µg 3,386.67%
Cheese, American, restaurant
Category: Dairy and Egg Products
54.1 µg 36.07%
Eggs, Grade A, Large, egg whole
Category: Dairy and Egg Products
49.1 µg 32.73%
Milk, reduced fat, fluid, 2% milkfat, with added vitamin A and vitamin D
Category: Dairy and Egg Products
39.6 µg 26.40%
1 Nutrient amount is in 100 gram food
2 Use FDA 2000 calorie diet as Daily Value reference

Additional Nutrient Information
Nutrient Summary Iodine makes thyroid hormones which controls the body's metabolism, and also for proper brain and bone development during pregnancy and infancy.
Deficiency Health Effects Though symptoms of iodine deficiency are rare, severe iodine deficiency can result in:

• For adults:
1) Goiter (the most obvious symptom): thyroid enlargement caused by thyroid gland cells trying to trap as much iodine as possible.
2) Hypothyroidism: the thyroid doesn't create and release enough thyroid hormone into your bloodstream.
• For pregnant women: permanently harm the fetus by causing sluggish growth and intellectual disability or even cretinism (extreme form of neurological damage from fetal hypothyroidism)
• For children: impaired cognitive development. Even less severe iodine deficiency can cause lower-than-average IQ.

• People who don't use iodized salt, do not eat dairy products, live in regions with iodine-deficient soils and eat mostly local foods, have higher probability of iodine deficiency.
• People with autoimmune thyroid disease (AITD) may have iodine deficiency. AITD is common in the U.S. population and particularly in older women.
• Deficiencies of vitamin A, selenium, or iron can each exacerbate the effects of iodine deficiency.
Effects if Above Upper Limit The Upper Limit for iodine is based on thyroid dysfunction. High iodine intake from food, water, and supplements can cause some of the similar symptoms as iodine deficiency, such as thyroiditis, goiter, hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, sensitivity reactions, thyroid cancer, and acute effects of iodine poisoning, such as burning of the mouth, throat, and stomach, and even possible coma.

Excessive iodine is especially damaging to fetus and infant. An infant with enlarged goiter may block the airways and cause suffocation.

In general, iodine intake from usual foods and supplements is unlikely to exceed the Upper Limit. The daily upper limits are:
Children 1–3 years: 200 µg (Recommended Daily Value: 90 µg)
Children 4–8 years: 300 µg (RDV: 90 µg)
Children 9–13 years: 600 µg (RDV: 120 µg)
Teens 14–18 years: 900 µg (RDV: 150 µg)
Adults: 1,100 µg (RDV: 150 µg)
External References Learn more at:
• The National Academies of Science, Engineering, Medicine publication: Dietary Reference Intakes
• NIH (National Institutes of Health) article: Iodine
• article: Health Benefits of Iodine

Daily Value Age Group Recommended Daily Values Daily Value Upper Limits
Toddler 1 to 3 years old: 90 µg 200 µg
Child 4 to 8 years old: 90 µg 300 µg
Male 9 to 13 years old: 120 µg 600 µg
Male 14 to 18 years old: 150 µg 900 µg
Male 19 to 30 years old: 150 µg 1,100 µg
Male 31 to 50 years old: 150 µg 1,100 µg
Male 51 to 70 years old: 150 µg 1,100 µg
Male Senior 71 or older: 150 µg 1,100 µg
Female 9 to 13 years old: 120 µg 600 µg
Female 14 to 18 years old: 150 µg 900 µg
Female 19 to 30 years old: 150 µg 1,100 µg
Female 31 to 50 years old: 150 µg 1,100 µg
Female 51 to 70 years old: 150 µg 1,100 µg
Female Senior 71 or older: 150 µg 1,100 µg
Female Pregnancy (>18): 220 µg 1,100 µg
Female Lactation (>18): 290 µg 1,100 µg
FDA (Based on 2000 calorie daily diet): 150 µg

Dietary Reference Intakes The nutrient Dietary Reference Intakes and nutrition facts is from Institute of Medicine of National Academies 2006. Dietary Reference Intakes: The Essential Guide to Nutrient Requirements. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
US FDA Nutrition Education Nutrition facts knowledge are based on U.S. FOOD & DRUG Administration Nutrition Education Resources & Materials.
National Institutes of Health Nutrition facts knowledge are based on National Institutes of Health Dietary Supplement Fact Sheets.
Disclaimer The nutrient information provided here should not take the place of medical advice. We encourage you to talk to your healthcare providers (such as your doctor) about your dietary requirements which are best for your overall health. We also recommend you to read organization or professional reference documents or articles mentioned, but not limited to, in this page. Any mentions and reference links in this page don't represent our endorsement of their services and advice.

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