If you are going to have radioactive iodine treatment for your thyroid disease, you will have to prepare in advance by following a low-iodine diet. Radioactive iodine is taken as a pill to permanently reduce your thyroid gland activity. There are a few different thyroid conditions that may be treated with radioactive iodine therapy, including several types of thyroid cancer as well as some kinds of benign non-cancerous hyperthyroidism. There are certain restrictions when you are on a low-iodine diet. Some foods either contain iodine or increase your absorption of iodine. Foods to avoid while you are on a low-iodine diet include. Salt is the most common source of iodine, but low iodine has nothing to do with sodium, which is also found in salt. While you are on your low-iodine diet, sodium is fine, as long as it’s from other sources. Foods and medications may be processed with iodine-containing Red Dye 3 erythrosine. Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you if any of your regular medications contain iodine, in which case you may need to change to a different prescription before and throughout your radioactive iodine treatment. You can find information about the iodine content in any of your over-the-counter pills by checking the manufacturer’s website or by asking your pharmacist.
The short-term low-iodine diet is another part of preparing to receive radioactive iodine for papillary or follicular thyroid cancer or one of their variants. The diet, recommended by ThyCa Medical Advisors, other thyroid cancer experts, and the American Thyroid Association, increases the effectiveness of the radioactive iodine treatment. Note that sodium is not an issue. What is to be avoided is the added iodine found in iodized salt, which is widely used, especially in processed foods. This does not apply to foods that naturally contain sodium without salt as an ingredient. There are many foods you can eat while on the low-iodine diet. It is a good idea to cook meals yourself, using fresh ingredients, including fruits, vegetables, and unprocessed meats. Many thyroid cancer patients with papillary or follicular thyroid cancer receive a dose of radioactive iodine RAI about two months after their surgery in an attempt to destroy ablate any remaining thyroid cells in their bodies. The diet is to prepare for the RAI. The purpose of a low-iodine diet is to deplete the body of its stores of iodine, to help increase the effectiveness of the radioactive iodine scan or treatment. This diet is for a short time period.
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