Little information is available as to whether doses of iodide similar to those recommended in clinical practice for the prevention of iodine deficiency in pregnant women affect thyroid function. The aim of the present study was to analyse whether doses of iodide can affect thyroid function in adults, and evaluate its effect on plasma markers of oxidative stress, inflammation and acute-phase proteins. A total of thirty healthy volunteers (ten men and twenty women) with normal thyroid function were randomly assigned to three groups (n 10). Each group received a daily dose of 100, 200 or 300 μg of iodide in the form of KI for 6 months. Free tetraiodothyronine (FT4) levels at day 60 of the study were higher in the groups treated with 200 and 300 μg (P = 0·01), and correlated with the increase in urinary iodine (r 0·50, P = 0·007). This correlation lost its significance after adjustment for the baseline FT4. The baseline urinary iodine and FT4 correlated positively with the baseline glutathione peroxidase. On day 60, urinary iodine correlated with C-reactive protein (r 0·461, P = 0·018), and free triiodothyronine correlated with IL-6 (r − 0·429, P = 0·025). On day 60, the changes produced in urinary iodine correlated significantly with the changes produced in α1-antitrypsin (r 0·475, P = 0·014) and ceruloplasmin (r 0·599, P = 0·001). The changes in thyroid-stimulating hormone correlated significantly with the changes in α1-antitrypsin (r − 0·521, P = 0·005) and ceruloplasmin (r − 0·459, P = 0·016). In conclusion, the administration of an iodide supplement between 100 and 300 μg/d did not modify thyroid function in a population with adequate iodine intake. The results also showed a slight anti-inflammatory and antioxidative action of iodide.