Thyroid UK
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Goitrogenic brassicas - advice given questioned

Info about goitrogenic brassicas on Main site re adverse effects of drugs and foods. I was wondering how much was too much, as if you remove all brassicas, there is not a lot left leaf wise except spinach family which is reputed to lock up iron due to oxalic acid - and low iron is often a problem anyway!

Just come across this by Linus Pauling institute

They say quantity is 1-1.5kg(!) and only if in tandem with iodine deficiency. Confirmation would be good!

6 Replies

The article you quote, in itself, is a bit thin. The source she references is, perhaps, more helpful?



Thanks Rod - that is more helpful. Another ref below, again a bit thin as you say, and I missed the book title:

He seems to be keen on raw anyway, but the studies seem to confirm it is iodine def + brassicas(raw).


You can eat brassicas, if you are careful only have a small amount and not every day. Most people can manage fine in moderation. Obviously if you feel they have an effect on you then dont eat them, as everyone is different.

I can eat about 5 sprouts very occassionally, cant touch cabbage of any kind. I can tell within half an hour if I shouldnt have eaten something because my throat tightens. Other people can eat far more than I can, some people cant touch them, its trial and error with some common sense thrown in :)


Thanks, Susymac - commonsense is always useful! Do you know if it is sensitivity you are talking about, rather than goitrogenicity, or do you think the throat effect is due to the brassica affecting the thyroid?


I think the secret is to well cook only small amounts and not use the water residue for gravies.

This assumes you're not iodine deficient or sensitive to them in any way.

Any treatment for thyroid could bear on it too,esp. if not optimal. Lots of the usual variables..

...and he does say 'may' a few times.That's not science, either!


Thanks, tegz - hadn't thought of veggie water - will bear that in mind. Variables are important, I agree, and he does say to ensure sufficient iodine. Another site also said to be careful if iodine or se deficient, and if thyroid problems. Have not found the rabbit study yet ... someone commented on Amazon (unscientific again, until I can find the study) that the study involved feeding raw cabbage and taking away their iodized salt block, and that when the block was restored, they went back to normal.

Regarding the "may", studies seem to use this terminology. It is also true of tobacco, you will be more likely to get cancer from smoking, but you may not - and that is actually scientific, as people react differently - hence your comment re variables is very apt. I don't think this invalidates much of what he is saying - new evidence points to the problem being iodine deficiency, maybe then exacerbated by raw brassicas. I guess he could have been a bit less definite... though people took the original study as definite that raw brassicas cause goitre in humans. I found it interesting that the original study seems to have been less definite than we have been led to believe, and would be interested in finding it.


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