Physiological effect of iodine in the body is done through the process to make thyroid hormone which is the most important hormone of human.

Benefits of iodine

1.   Maintain energy metabolism of the body (implement physical separation, provide energy needed for the activities of the body) and generate heat (maintain body temperature): Lacking of iodine will reduce thyroid hormone secretion and cause damage to basic operation to preserve the body. However, it also declines body functions.

2.   Promote the development process of the body: Thyroid hormones control the development of bones, gender and muscles as well as height of children in development stage. A shortage of thyroid hormones will make the body develop abnormally.

3.   Support brain development: During certain brain development of pregnancy or early development of children, it is necessary to rely on thyroid hormones. The deficiency of thyroid hormone affects brain development process and will interfere intellectual development later.

If iodine is supplemented after that phase, it only works to keep the body in normal development, helps improve thyroid function which has been weakened, restores body function and improves intellectual activities indirectly.

Description: Sea fish has high content of iodine.

Sea fish has high content of iodine.

Iodine foods

Concentration of iodine in kelp is highest (about 2000μg (micrograms)/kg fresh kelp). Sea fish and shellfish in the sea follow after that (about 800μg/kg).

The terrestrial food such as egg and milk contains high level of iodine (4-90μg/kg), followed by meat. Freshwater fish have iodine concentration which is equal to or lower than meat. Plants have the lowest iodine content.

In addition, there is large content of iodine in salt. The more salt is refined, the less amount of iodine. The concentration of iodine in sea salt is about 20μg/kg. If a person eats 10g of salt per day, they will only absorb 2μg of iodine; certainly it can’t meet the requirement to prevent iodine insufficiency.

Description: Parsley has high content of iodine..

Parsley has high content of iodine.

Top 10 foods containing iodine (and iodine concentration/100g of that food)

1.      Kelp: 1mg

2.      Purple Alga (dry): 1800 μg

3.      Spinach: 164μg

4.      Parsley: 160μg

5.      Sea fish: 80μg

6.      Seasalt: 2μg

7.      Plants: 14μg

8.      Salt with iodine: 7600μg

9.      Chinese cabbage: 9.8μg

10.   Egg: 9.7μg


Do not eat too much iodine. It may change or increase the burden on thyroid function. With children, the largest amount of iodine is 800μg/day and 1000μg/day with adults. Iodine content standard from 14 years old to maturity is 150μg/day. Pregnant women and nursing mothers should add more 50μg/day.

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