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Iodine is vital and indispensable for the production of thyroid hormones. The thyroid hormones have a central function in controlling the metabolism and are necessary for normal growth, bone formation and the development of the nervous system, among other things. If too little of the element is taken in over a long period of time, it can lead to hypothyroidism. Symptoms such as fatigue, weight gain and an enlarged thyroid (goiter) can occur. An oversupply of iodine, on the other hand, can lead to hyperthyroidism in patients with Graves' disease or functional autonomy.

In brief:

Tabelle Jod_en

In Germany, the iodine supply has improved since the mid-1980s. One major reason for this is the measure to enrich table salt with iodine. However, current data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) show that iodine intake is still not optimal. Almost 30 % of adults and 44 % of children and adolescents are at risk of insufficient iodine intake.

Good sources of vitamin Iodine when following a vegan diet:

Menü Jod 2 en 

Fruit, vegetables and cereals are low in iodine because the soil in Germany contains little iodine. The element is only found in relevant quantities in a few foods. These include seafood, milk and foods processed with iodised salt. Those who consciously eat such foods and use iodised salt in the household are usually sufficiently supplied with iodine. However, pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers have a higher iodine requirement. After consulting their doctor, they should therefore take an additional 100-150 micrograms (µg) of iodine per day as a supplement. 

Proposed maximum level for the addition of iodine to food supplements (per daily dose of an individual product):

Höchstmenge Jod_en

In order to provide consumers with significant additional nutrient intake via food supplements when needed and at the same time to protect well-supplied people from excessive intake, the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) recommends adding no more than 100 µg of iodine per daily dose to a food supplement. For the group of pregnant and breastfeeding women, a maximum value of 150 µg iodine per daily consumption recommendation of a food supplement is suggested.




Date Title Size
BfR FAQ of 20 February 2020, updated
Iodine intake in Germany on the decline again - tips for a good iodine intake 164.5 KB


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