Is Iodized Salt Good for Hypothyroidism? (Expert Answer)

Short Answer: Iodized salt is good for hypothyroidism if it is caused by iodine deficiency, but bad for hypothyroidism if it is caused by autoimmune thyroiditis.

Hypothyroidism is a condition that affects your thyroid gland.

In hypothyroidism, your body does not produce enough thyroid hormones, which are essential for normal growth and development and for regulation of a number of homeostatic functions.

This can lead to various health problems, such as fatigue, weight gain, cold intolerance, dry skin, hair loss, constipation, depression, and menstrual irregularities.

One of the key factors in managing hypothyroidism is diet.

What you consume can affect your thyroid function, which can impact your hypothyroidism symptoms and overall health.

To effectively manage hypothyroidism, you should consume iodine-rich foods like seafood, dairy products, and eggs, and avoid goitrogenic foods like cruciferous vegetables, soy, millet, and cassava.

Now, iodized salt is table salt that has been fortified with iodine, a trace mineral that is essential for thyroid hormone synthesis.

People usually add iodized salt to their food for flavor and to prevent iodine deficiency.

Iodized salt is good for hypothyroidism if it is caused by iodine deficiency, which is rare in developed countries where iodized salt and other iodine sources are widely available.

However, iodized salt is bad for hypothyroidism if it is caused by autoimmune thyroiditis, also known as Hashimoto’s disease, which is the most common cause of hypothyroidism in the United States.

One teaspoon of iodized salt can give you about 400 micrograms of iodine, which is more than the recommended daily intake of 150 micrograms for adults.

Iodine can positively affect hypothyroidism by providing the raw material for thyroid hormone production.

However, iodine can also negatively affect hypothyroidism by triggering or worsening autoimmune thyroiditis, especially in people who are genetically susceptible or have other risk factors.

Furthermore, iodized salt is a processed food and processed foods are bad for hypothyroidism.

Because, processed foods often contain additives, preservatives, and artificial ingredients that can interfere with thyroid function and hormone balance.

They can also increase inflammation, oxidative stress, and insulin resistance, which can worsen hypothyroidism and its complications.

That’s why I suggest you limit your iodized salt intake to avoid possible adverse effects.

Stick to less than 5 grams of salt per day, which is equivalent to about one teaspoon, to minimize the risk of high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, stomach cancer, and kidney stones.

Also, you shouldn’t use iodized salt if you have Hashimoto’s disease or other autoimmune thyroid disorders to prevent further damage to your thyroid gland.

Because, excess iodine can stimulate the production of thyroid antibodies that attack your own thyroid tissue.

You can buy iodized salt in any grocery store or online.

Always choose iodized salt that is free of anti-caking agents, dyes, and other additives.

Because, these substances can reduce the bioavailability of iodine and have other negative effects on your health.

You can store iodized salt in a cool, dry, and dark place for up to five years.

Finally, remember, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, stress management and essential medical care is key to managing hypothyroidism effectively.

I always recommend my hypothyroidism patients to follow a hypothyroidism-friendly diet to improve their thyroid function, hormone levels, and overall well-being, and enjoy a longer and healthier life.

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About the Author

Abdur Rahman Choudhury

Abdur Rahman Choudhury is a nutritionist in West Bengal, India, with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Biochemistry.

He has done his diploma in nutrition from Fabulous Body Inc (US), and completed various certification courses from several universities. He also has considerable research experience in PCOS.

Abdur currently lives in India and keeps fit by weight training and eating mainly home-cooked meals.

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