If you have had issues with your thyroid gland, it’s very likely that your doctor has already put you on a diet of foods with iodine a few times. The thyroid gland is the only part of your body capable of processing iodine, which is why it is mostly recommended to those who have been experiencing problems with their metabolism and other thyroid-related conditions. By adjusting your diet, you can improve your health and prevent a host of conditions.
What is iodine?
Iodine is the chemical that create thyroid hormones. It has to be ingested because the body cannot manufacture it naturally. Its job is to ensure the thyroid gland is in good working order. The gland is responsible for metabolism and growth. If it malfunctions, it might cause symptoms such as weight gain, fatigue, mental slowness and depression.
Not eating enough foods with iodine or consuming too much can also lead to goiter and hypothyroidism. The former is when the thyroid gland swells up in the neck and the latter refers to an underactive thyroid gland that might cause slow growth and retardation, especially in children.
What are foods with iodine?
You are probably familiar with and have been eating iodized salt for years. It is the easiest way to take up your intake because all you need to do is sprinkle your food with it. Salt, however, might not be the best option for people with kidney disease and high blood pressure. An alternative source of iodine is seafood. Tuna, cod, shrimp and seaweed contain high iodine content because of the sea. Season your seafood platter with soy sauce for iodine-rich meals.
If you are allergic to seafood or simply don’t enjoy it, try having regular servings of turkey instead. You can also fill up on dairy like cheese, milk and yoghurt. Eggs are great foods with iodine and having them for breakfast every morning can boost your metabolism. For dessert, you can enjoy a scoop of ice cream, which is also high in iodine.
Who needs more iodine?
The abovementioned symptoms like weight gain, tiredness and mental slowness are telltale signs your thyroid gland is not functioning as it should. However, you need to consult your physician and undergo a urine test to check the amount of iodine present in your body.
Research has discovered that thyroid problems are common with adult over 40 years of age. Goiter in particular tends to affect more women than men. Try to learn as much as you can about the diseases in your family tree. Sufferers of malfunctioning thyroid usually have a family history of this condition.
Although there are over the counter supplements available, it is highly advised that you allow your doctor to prescribe them for you. This is because an overdose of iodine can lead to hypothyroidism and goiter. It is much safer and healthier to consume foods with iodine. That way, you can increase your intake and benefit from the many other nutrients these foods contain.