Do I Have an Iodine Deficiency?

green seaweed salad3

Do I have an iodine deficiency? Great question! This is a hot topic for us at the moment as I (Emma) just found out I’m severely deficient in iodine… and apparently it’s becoming more and more common.

The symptoms I received from my iodine deficiency were pretty annoying to be honest, but I’m super happy to have figured out the issue and am now working towards fixing it! It could have got a lot worse. I’ve listed my symptoms below.

  • Weird moods, I had so many reasons to be happy but was getting down and really irritable. Like really bad PMS but all the time!
  • Swollen throat for a long long time! I had a sore swollen throat for about a year before figuring out it was due to an iodine deficiency. This was actually an enlarged thyroid leading to Goiter. Not cool!
  • This funked up my thyroid hormones. Any issues with the thyroid lead to a hormonal mess! I put on unexplained weight, my body temperature was all over the place (sweaty when I shouldn’t be!) and I was tired all the time!
  • Felt inflamed and puffy.

Other symptoms of an iodine deficiency include:

  • depression
  • frustration
  • poor perception
  • constipation
  • coarse/dry skin
  • fatigue
  • fertility and still birth issues
  • mental retardation
  • leads to hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism.

An iodine deficiency is definitely not fun and as you can see it leads to some serious health issues. If you have these symptoms make sure you go and see your GP, integrated doctor or naturopath to get tested (I had an iodine spot test).

As you can imagine I have been reading article after article about iodine, there’s so much information out there! I’ve been looking for ways to speed up my absorption, what foods to eat, best supplements etc etc.

I found a great article on (you guessed it) Mark’s Daily Apple…

Iodine is a highly water-soluble trace element that’s rare in the earth’s crust, but fairly prevalent in its seas. Our bodies require it, for several reasons. Our thyroid glands use it to make thyroid hormones (T3 molecular weight is 59% iodine; T4 molecular weight, 65%), and a severe deficiency can manifest in the development of goiter, which is the thyroid gland swelling up in an attempt to keep up the pace of iodine uptake from the blood and thyroid hormone production…. Those who eat a lot of raw broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussel sprouts, bok choy, collard greens, mustard greens, Chinese broccoli/cabbage, radishes, rutabagas, turnips, rapini, kale, millet, soy, cassava, spinach, pine nuts, pears, peaches, sweet potatoes, peanuts, or bamboo shoots should supplement with iodine or consider swapping in some sea vegetables. The aforementioned are all sources of goitrogens, which, when eaten raw, prevent iodine uptake by the thyroid gland. Cooking takes care of most of the problem, but variety is always good. Those with poor intakes of selenium, vitamin A, and iron may be at a greater risk for iodine deficiency symptoms. Eat your salmon, liver, and eggs, folks!(read more)

OK. So now next steps: get my iodine back to a healthy level! I’m sticking to my current real food diet and…

  • eating delicious sea vegetables at least every second day. Check out this delicious Green Seaweed Salad. I LOVE wakame!
  • adding more celtic sea salt to my meals. YUM!
  • eating more fish. Like this delicious salmon recipe.
  • eating foods high in selenium like Brazil nuts and berries.
  • taking an iodine supplement.
  • staying away from raw cruciferous veggies which are goitrogens like broccoli and cauliflower (they’re ok when cooked).

green seaweed salad3

I’ve been taking a daily supplement called Divinita Premium.  It’s made with brown algae seaweed and it’s a great daily supplement to maintain good health and perfect for those suffering iodine deficiency!

Here’s the juice-y facts. Divinita Premium…

  • nourishes your body to give you clean cellular energy, a much more sustainable source than a caffeine kick that keeps you running all day without the crash.
  • removes heavy metals.
  • packed with antioxidants, these protect the body from effects of free radicals and reduce the risk of cell damage.
  • rich in a low GI starch that contains prebiotic fibres to promote a healthy flora in your digestive tract. Combined with nutrients such as iodine, your body can stimulate thyroid hormones to ignite your metabolism and so much more.

I’m so happy to promote this supplement.  About 2 weeks after making the above changes and taking Divinita Premium my throat became less swollen and I literally felt like a different person mentally! I was happier, could make decisions better and just felt right.

I’m super glad and extremely grateful to have figured it all out! I’d been to about 3 different doctors complaining of my throat issue and EVERY time I’d be told “it’s just stress”. I also had my thyroid levels tested from a regular GP… what I did not know was that you need to ASK for a FULL THYROID PROFILE,  otherwise they don’t test all the right hormone levels. Talk about fascinating and frustrating at the same time!

The one huge thing I’ve learnt  is to listen to my intuition. When you know something isn’t right with your health: seek help. If you don’t get an answer, get a second, third, fourth opinion. Yes, it’s going to be expensive but you can’t put a price on health. If we don’t fix it NOW, it’s going to get more expensive later and be a bumpier, less happy journey. I made sacrifices to pay for all my tests and appointments and I have no regrets!

I’d love to connect with you if you have a similar story. How did you bring more iodine in to your diet? How long did it take for your levels to become healthy?

Always merrymaking,


p.s this post was written in collaboration with Divinita Premium after I tried their supplements and was super impressed with the results.

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