A quick Google search of iodine supplements online reveals there’s conflicting opinions, even advice that’s not supported by solid research.
I have serious concerns that some health websites advocate mega-doses of iodine. It’s risky! Taking milligram amounts of iodine poses a threat to your thyroid health.
How much iodine is considered safe to take? How much is too much?
Confused about how much iodine is safe to take? Unfortunately the more you read online, the more confusing it can get.
Firstly, it’s important to know that iodine is considered an essential nutrient as your body cannot manufacture iodine. You need to get this nutrient from your diet, or a supplement.
Secondly, iodine supplements are effective for preventing and treating an iodine deficiency when taken as suggested.
Did you know taking 150 – 300 micrograms of iodine per day is generally considered a safe amount?
How much iodine is too much?
The Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), and the US National Institutes of Health have set the safe UPPER LEVEL OF INTAKE at 1,100 micrograms per day.
These levels do not apply to individuals who are taking iodine for medical reasons under the supervision of a healthcare practitioner. For example, high doses of potassium iodide is an approved remedy to reduce thyroid cancer risk when there is a radiation fallout emergency.
Before You Purchase Iodine Supplements Online There Are Some Things You Need To Know
To avoid taking mega-doses it’s very useful to know that 1000 micrograms of iodine equals 1 milligram. When looking at dietary supplement labels iodine is often expressed in trace, or microgram amounts.
You see, there’s a big difference between microgram and milligram amounts. As an example, you may see some health websites recommending up to 12 milligrams per day. To put this into perspective, that’s the equivalent of 12,000 micrograms!
Taking an excess amount of iodine may cause side effects.
Iodine supplements are an important extension of healthy eating when taken as recommended. However, be aware taking mega-doses is NOT recommended.
- It’s wise to carefully check the label of an iodine supplement so you know exactly how much iodine you are getting. Taking more than what is generally recommended is a concern for those with a diagnosed autoimmune thyroid disorder.
- Studies suggest those diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis may be sensitive to an elevated intake of iodine so consuming a high amount is discouraged. High intake could trigger an autoimmune flare up.
Where Can I Buy Iodine Supplements?
It’s possible to purchase iodine supplements from natural health clinics, health shops, and online health websites. They sell liquid iodine concentrates, Bladderwrack supplements, single iodine supplements, and iodine is often included in specialty thyroid health formulas.
If you would like to read more about choosing an effective thyroid health supplement please click here: Top Five Tips To Help You Find The Best Thyroid Supplement: A Naturopath Explains
Please note you should speak to your healthcare practitioner before making any changes to your diet, exercise routine, or supplement protocol, especially if you have a diagnosed thyroid disorder. Your healthcare practitioner can make recommendations that are best for your overall health.
Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and the New Zealand Ministry of Health (MoH). Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand. Iodine. Link.
Braun L, Cohen M. Herbs and natural supplements: an evidence-based guide, 3rd ed. Iodine Monograph. Page 614-622. Churchill Livingstone. 2007.
National Institutes of Health. Medline Plus. Herbs and Supplements. Iodine monograph. National Library of Medicine. National Institutes of Health (NIH), USA. Updated October 26, 2016. Link
National Institutes of Health (NIH). Office of Dietary Supplements. USA. Iodine. Fact Sheet For Consumers. Link