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Does Iodine Belong in a Multivitamin? Here’s Our Advice

2 min read
Wondering if you should be supplementing with iodine? Most of us can probably get enough through diet alone, but there are a few exceptions.
Wondering if you should be supplementing with iodine? Most of us can probably get enough through diet alone, but there are a few exceptions.

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Fun fact: Iodine supports normal energy-yielding metabolism, which is kind of an important job when it comes to our daily wellbeing. Another fun fact? This mineral is found in a lot of foods (and even table salt!), which means that many of us are consuming enough to meet our daily needs. In fact, iodine shortfalls in the US are pretty uncommon.* (1)

But let’s take a closer look, shall we?

Most adults are able to meet their iodine needs through diet alone.

For teens ages 14-17 and adults 18+, the daily recommended amount of iodine is just 150 micrograms. And since iodine can be found in a wide variety of foods—fish, seaweed, dairy products, grains, and some fruits and vegetables are all sources—chances are many of us are meeting that daily iodine requirement just through what we’re eating every day. Iodized salt (aka table salt) is also a good source of iodine.* (1)

But there’s one important exception.

Pregnant and lactating women should probably consider supplementing with iodine.*

That’s because when women are expecting or breastfeeding, their iodine needs are higher. Pregnant women should aim to get 220 mcg of iodine daily, and lactating women should aim for 290 mcg.* (1)

Another factor? When women are expecting, their diets might change—which can have an impact on iodine intake as well. That’s why looking for iodine in a prenatal multivitamin and a postnatal multivitamin may not be a bad idea. In fact, it’s why we include 150 mcg per serving of iodine in our Essential Prenatal.*

Vegan or vegetarian?

If you’re pregnant, not to fear: Essential Prenatal’s form of iodine (USP-grade potassium iodide) is vegan-friendly.

For any of our other veg friends, note that fruits and vegetables can be iodine sources depending on the soil conditions they’re grown in. Knowing precisely how your vegetables are grown isn’t always a straightforward ask, especially if you’re shopping for produce at the grocery store (rather than, say, the farmer’s market)—so aiming for variety on your plate is, as always, a good rule of thumb. But sea vegetables, iodized salt, and some grains can also be good sources of iodine as well. If you’re still concerned about your iodine levels, checking in with your physician is your best bet.* (1)


  1. Office of Dietary Supplements - Iodine. (n.d.). Retrieved August 31, 2020, from National Institutes of Health.


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