In order to prepare my body for the radioactive iodine (RAI) treatment and scan, I had to go on a low-iodine diet (LID). I must admit that I was not too thrilled to find out that I was going to have to greatly limit my diet for over 2 weeks by going on a low-iodine diet (LID). But in reality that is such a short amount of time when I compare it to the remaining wonderful years of my life. Plus I’m doing it so that those cancer cells will be zapped away once and for all!
So I got fired up, made an adjustment to my attitude and started searching online. I had to be on the LID for 18 days. That is 54 meals and lots of snacks…Yikes! One low iodine diet food item at a time. To my surprise, it was not too easy to find things to eat at first. Sure ThyCa lists recipes on their site, but I didn’t want to have to spend hours in the kitchen preparing dozens of meals.
In an effort to save YOU time and worry, I have put together some lists.
Food products with no or low-iodine that I used:
- Condiments: Kosher salt, Pepper, Mrs. Dash, Heinz No Salt Ketchup, Thyca red wine vinaigrette
- Trader Joes No Salt Wheat Bread
- Trader Joes No Salt Corn Tortilla Chips (surprisingly good)
- Yehuda Matzos (Jewish unleavened flat bread)
- Trader Joes Steal Cut Oatmeal – I added blueberries and sweetner for taste
- Trader Joes No Salt Peanut Butter
- Mashed Butternut Squash – Cut a butternut squash into cubes. Boil a pot of water with a bit of Kosher salt. Put the squash into boiling water and cook for about 15 minutes. Drain and put the squash into a bowl. Add honey, cinnamon and sugar (or sweetner) and mash away! It is so good and goes great as a side dish for lunch or dinner.
- Celery and Trader Joe’s no salt peanut butter (Good snack)
- Snow Pea Pods (Enjoyable, crunchy afternoon snack)
- Baked apples with cinnamon
- Frozen Grapes (A sweet, cold treat)
- Fruit salad – grapes, pineapple, blueberries, strawberries & any other fruit you desire
- Homemade Guacamole (Avocado, finely chopped onion, chopped tomato, lime, kosher salt, cilantro) with non salt tortilla chips
- Nature’s Path called Manna Bread in a range of flavors
- Manischewitz unsalted potato chips
- Newman’s Own Unsalted Organic Microwave Popcorn
- Terra Unsalted Hickory BBQ Potato Chips
- Mr. Spice Honey BBQ Sauce
- Mr. Spice Thai Peanut Sauce
- GottaLuvIT Raspberry Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Gotta Luv It Sweet & Tangy Italian Dressing
- Health Valley No Salt Added Split Pea Soup
- Trader Joe’s Low Salt Items – Low salt is NOT low iodine, however I found this to be very helpful. As it turns out, many of the products on their list were low iodine. Just read the ingredients carefully and you’ll see what I mean.
Helpful Low-Iodine Cookbooks:
- ThyCa: Thyroid Cancer Survivors’ Association Low-Iodine Cookbook
- The Light of Life Foundation Cookbook – Great Recipes for an Iodine-free Diet
I suggest putting together a schedule of LID meals for the week. I did NOT do this the first week and felt totally overwhelmed. Planning in advance made things much easier. I made a list of LID meals for the second week and it made a world of difference.
If you are about to embark on the low iodine diet journey, I wish you the best. I reminded myself on a regular basis why I was on the LID and it always helped to put things in perspective. Changing my diet for a few weeks to beat cancer is a small sacrifice for the big gift of remission.
Sending you hope, strength, patience, positivity and prayers…