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Foods That Inhibit Iodine

author image Carole Anne Tomlinson
Carole Anne Tomlinson is a registered nurse with experience in rehabilitation, nutrition, chemical dependency, diabetes and health problems related to the elderly. Tomlinson holds a Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice and is presently working on her master's degree in nursing. Her screenplays have been viewed by Merchant Ivory, Angela Lansbury and Steven King's associates.
Foods That Inhibit Iodine
A large bowl of black soybeans. Photo Credit GYRO PHOTOGRAPHY/amanaimagesRF/amana images/Getty Images


Your body needs iodine to promote normal thyroid activity, the Linus Pauling Institute reports. In order for thyroid hormone, thyroxine, to be produced, you must have iodine available in your body. The thyroid, a small gland in your neck, helps each organ in your body to function by its stimulating factor of thyroxine. When the thyroid has difficulty secreting thyroxine, your body’s organs experience delays in their functions. Among many things, your thyroid helps you to regulate your metabolism. Certain foods inhibit the process of iodine uptake, so you should avoid them.

Processed Foods

Lack of nutrients may contribute to poor thyroid function. By eating foods that do not include sufficient vitamins and minerals to support the secretion of thyroxine by the thyroid, your thyroid may remain sluggish and have poor activity. Most processed foods, such as boxed or frozen dinners, do not contain enough nutrients and vitamins to help maintain the health of your thyroid.

Products With Soy

Soy foods provide healthy choices for anyone who needs to avoid drinking or eating dairy products. You may have an allergy to dairy products and therefore consume soy products regularly. The problem occurs if there is a thyroid glandular problem established. Soy contains isoflavones, which tend to mimic the activity of estrogen hormones and inhibit activity of the thyroid. Avoid soy products if you have a diagnosed thyroid problem, the Linus Pauling Institute recommends. You will find soy in soy milk, meat substitutes, mayonnaise and salad dressings. Be sure to read food labels for soy ingredients.

Certain Vegetables

Cabbage, broccoli, spinach, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower contain high levels of goitrogens that inhibit the uptake of iodine. If you eat large amounts of these vegetables it will make a difference on the therapeutic function of your thyroid, the website Natural Endocrine Solutions states. A good way to get rid of these goitrogens is to steam your food and make sure it is fully cooked -- easily pierced with a fork. Once fully cooked, these goitrogens are no longer in the food and you can then enjoy eating them. Other vegetables with low levels of goitrogens include kale, radishes and mustard greens.

Peaches and Strawberries

Strawberries and peaches contain goitrogens. As with the aforementioned vegetables, these fruits interfere with the uptake of iodine and thyroid hormone production. Although these fruits contain goitrogens, some people may tolerate them with little adverse effects. Other people find it more difficult and the fruits do effect thyroid hormone production. Peaches and strawberries may make it increasingly difficult for prescribed hypothyroidism medications to work properly, the website Natural Endocrine Solutions reports.

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