Iodine: Why is it so Important?

iodized salt
Iodine, usually found in salt, is a trace mineral that is essential for thyroid functions, metabolism and body detoxification. (Photo by Chad Jones)

Iodine is a trace mineral; so your body needs it in minuscule amounts. But this does not cancel out its benefits. The importance of Iodine is like that pinch of salt you add to your food. Too little or too much is not desirable.

Iodine plays a vital role in growth and development right from the fetal stage to several years into adulthood. If you suffer from a deficiency of iodine, it is likely you are going to miss out on the following benefits.

The Benefits of Iodine

Thyroid Function

When speaking of iodine, it is hard to ignore the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland is situated in the neck. This is where majority of the iodine in your body is concentrated. It synthesizes hormones needed for multiple body functions such as cellular generation, reproduction, regulating body temperature, growth and metabolism. However, it requires iodine for it.

In the absence of enough iodine, the thyroid gland gets enlarged. If unchecked, it grows bigger in size, with the neck developing a lump appearance. The condition is called Goiter. Not only this, the chemical imbalance slows down all other body processes.

Metabolism and Weight Management

A sluggish metabolism and excessive weight gain mainly develop as symptoms of an under active thyroid. Your body is unable to burn the calories it consumes and so gets stored as fat. This results in weight gain. Iodine will adjust hormonal balance and help you lose weight.

Boosts Energy

With a metabolic system working at its optimum, the food you eat is not converted into fat but into usable energy. A deficiency of iodine leaves you feeling lethargic and low. You do not have enough energy to go about your regular activities.

Healthy Hair

Iodine is also linked to the growth of healthy hair. It affects the texture and volume of hair as well as the rate at which it grows. It also strengthens the hair follicles. If your hair is not as lustrous, you should test for iodine deficiency.

Builds Immune Strength

If you are battling a weak immune system, iodine can really help bolster it. It ensures all the antioxidants in the body are able to defend the body against various diseases and infections. This includes cardiac health and cancer. They protect the body from pathogens and also prevent damage to the body by free radical activity.

Body Detoxification

Iodine helps flush out chemicals from the body like calcium, silicon, lead, mercury, fluoride when they are present in excess, as they could prove toxic. Iodine neutralizes them and eventually gets rid of them, minimizing damage.

seafood store
Seafood like hellfish, lobsters, clams, oysters, shrimp and whitefish are excellent sources of Iodine. (Photo by USDA)

Excellent Sources of Iodine

  • Sea food, plants and animals, are loaded with iodine; hence, they are must-include in your diet. Eat a lot of shellfish, lobsters, clams, oysters, shrimp, whitefish, cod, salmon, sardines, tuna, halibut, herring and sea bass. Your meal should also include kelp, seaweed, Arame, Kombu etc.
  • Iodized salt is your next source of iodine.
  • Dairy products like cheese and yogurt and baked products like bread also contain iodine, although in small amounts.
  • You can also eat potatoes, garlic, leafy greens such as spinach and Swiss chard, navy beans, lima beans and soybeans.

Recommended Supplement

We recommend J.Crow’s Lugol Iodine Solution. Buy it now at Amazon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *