Your body needs iodine but cannot make it on its own. It’s up to the foods we eat to provide our bodies with this necessary element. The thyroid requires iodine to synthesize hormones, and when the body does not have enough, it can lead to many serious health issues including enlarged thyroid, infertility, autoimmune disease, and increased risk of thyroid cancer. Iodine deficiency during pregnancy can result in mental retardation of the baby. The key to getting the right amount is eating a balanced diet. Too little can have severe health repercussions, but too much is not healthy either. The recommended amount of iodine for the average adult is 150-220 micrograms per day. Go for these iodine-rich foods, and you won’t have to worry about iodine deficiency.

1. Dried Seaweed

Dried seaweed like nori or kelp, is an excellent source of iodine. Just one serving of dried seaweed contains up to 6,000 percent of your daily recommended intake (DRI) of iodine. Seaweed also contains a substantial amount of vitamin K, calcium, and iron—all essential nutrients for building strong bones and staying strong and energized. Because seaweed contains so much iodine, it should be eaten in moderation. Too much iodine can cause thyroid problems, just as too little iodine can cause problems.