Essential Ingredients

Learn About Ritual’s Form of Iodine from Dr. Luke Bucci, VP of R&D

3 min read

Essential Takeaways

  • Your Iodine needs increase by almost 50% when you’re pregnant to fuel your own metabolism and your baby’s rapid growth
  • Vegan-friendly potassium iodide is the same form found in seafood, milk, and eggs
  • USP grade means it has passed third party purity tests and is approved for use in both food and supplements.

Why do women need Iodine when pregnant or when they’re trying to get pregnant?

Iodine supports the production of hormones inside your thyroid gland. These hormones are used by all your cells to control your metabolism and create cellular energy. Think of thyroid hormones like an energy thermostat: they help make sure that your metabolism is not too fast or too slow based on your body’s needs. When you’re pregnant, both your body and your baby’s body need Iodine to fuel rapid cell growth. That’s a double-whammy demand, which is why you need almost 50% more Iodine during pregnancy (from 150 to 220 mcg per day).

What does Iodine do for the baby's development?

Babies need to grow really fast when in utero, which is why they require a lot of cellular energy. Your baby’s body controls its own growth (so as not to interfere with your metabolism), which means it uses its own thyroid hormones--not yours. Because its thyroid needs to make its own hormones, your baby needs its own supply of Iodine from your bloodstream. As the baby grows at a faster rate with each month of pregnancy, its Iodine requirements also increase. Getting enough Iodine helps your baby maintain the thyroid hormone signals that support normal growth and development--especially for the nervous system and brain.

What happens if you don’t get enough Iodine?

When you don’t get enough Iodine, your thyroid hormone production can decrease, leading to an energy shortage throughout the body. This may make you feel tired, sluggish and sleepy. It can also give you a feeling of brain fog and make you lose your appetite.

Why did Ritual choose potassium Iodide over other forms of Iodine?

We prefer potassium iodide over other forms of Iodine because it’s pure, it’s easy for your body to absorb, and it plays nice with other ingredients inside our capsule. Plus, it’s backed by the most use, history, and research of other Iodine forms. It’s vegan-friendly and, because it’s made in a lab, we don’t have to worry about GMO contamination or non-organic cultivation concerns.*

"We prefer potassium iodide over other forms of Iodine because it’s pure, it’s easy for your body to absorb, and it plays nice with other ingredients inside our capsule."

United States Pharmacopeial Convention (USP)

The United States Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) is a nonprofit that sets standards for the purity and quality of ingredients. In order to receive USP certification, an ingredient must pass rigorous purity tests and meet manufacturing requirements

Can we find potassium iodide in the foods we eat?

Potassium iodide is a predominant form of Iodine found in foods, especially seafood, milk, and eggs. It is also found in sea water and other water sources. Some grains and poultry foods have significant amounts of Iodine, but the levels are inconsistent and unreliable. Except for seaweed, foods rich in Iodine are not always vegetarian. And seaweeds often have other nutritional components that slow or inhibit Iodine uptake compared to the pure potassium iodide salt form.

Why did Ritual choose Nutrisol’s potassium iodide?

Our supplier, Nutrisol, generates potassium iodide from pure precursors--Iodine gas and potassium hydroxide. They make potassium iodide to the highest standards--United States Pharmacopeia (USP) grade. Also, potassium iodide is more potent than other forms, which means we don’t need to use as much in each capsule. That gives us more room for other nutrients and keeps our capsules smaller so they’re easier to take.*

Can you tell us a little bit about how the Iodine is sourced? Is it natural or synthesized?

Potassium iodide is a synthesized nutrient made from purified chemicals that are found in water and soil minerals. Until there is an agreed-upon definition of “natural” by the FDA or other regulatory bodies, we are happy with knowing that potassium iodide and its precursors are always part of our environment. The potassium iodide we use is synthesized from these precursors and is molecularly identical to what is found in healthy foods.*

Does the ingredient have any certifications? Vegan-certified? Project non-GMO certified?

Pure compounds like potassium iodide cannot be certified as vegan, non-GMO or organic because those certifications only apply to ingredients harvested from food sources like meat or plants. Instead, we opted for the highest level of purity and safety defined for synthesized nutrients--USP grade. If you have questions about the difference between plant-based and synthesized nutrients, you can read more about that here.

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