The butterfly-shaped gland at the base of your neck produces the hormones triiodothyronine (T3), thyroxine (T4), and calcitonin that influence your metabolic rate.
It also influences the development and functioning of the brain, growth, menstrual cycle, heart rate, sleep, and thought process.
A thyroid can overproduce ( hyperthyroidism ) or produce less ( hypothyroidism ) these hormones. This can lead to weight gain or loss, growth retardation, poor brain development, restlessness, irregular periods, depression, etc.
Medicines work, but their effects are short-lived. On the other hand, food can help to normalize thyroid function gradually and have no side effects.
So, without much preamble, let me tell you about the food you should eat and avoid hypothyroidism.
Foods to treat hypothyroidism
Hypothyroidism can cause the interruption of the menstrual cycle, weight gain, constipation, goiter, depression, dry skin, hair loss, muscle fatigue, slow heart rate, high blood cholesterol, and a swollen face.
In addition to medications, you can consume these foods to increase their effectiveness:
According to the American Thyroid Association, iodine is necessary for thyroid hormone production. Iodine deficiency can cause hypothyroidism and goiter.
Since your body can not produce iodine naturally, you should eat foods that contain a good amount of iodine. And the best way to do it is to consume iodized salt.
Brazil nuts are a great source of the mineral selenium that helps catalyze the conversion of inactive thyroid hormone to the active form. The scientists found that supplementation with Brazil nuts improved thyroid hormone levels.
Selenium also helps reduce inflammation and inhibits the proliferation of cancer cells. You can consume up to 8 Brazil nuts per day. Do not overeat, as it can cause nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting.
Fish are rich in omega-3 and selenium. Omega-3 fatty acids help reduce LDL cholesterol, and selenium keeps thyroid hormone running.
Eat salmon, sardines, and tuna to counteract hypothyroidism. You can have 3-5 oz of fish per day. Make sure you do not overcook the fish.
You can kill two birds with one stone by consuming a broth of bones. First, the bone broth contains glycine and proline amino acids that help repair the digestive lining and improve hypothyroidism.
Second, hypothyroidism can fracture your bones, and having bone broth can help strengthen them.
You can consume a cup of bone broth for lunch or dinner. You can add some vegetables. Be sure to cook the vegetables properly as some vegetables, when eaten raw, can promote hypothyroidism.
Vegetables and fruits:
Green leafy vegetables, colorful vegetables, and fruits are excellent sources of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and dietary fiber. However, you should be careful if you suffer from hypothyroidism because a few vegetables and fruits can hinder the production of thyroid hormones known as goitrogens.
Goitrogens are vegetables such as cauliflower, spinach, kale, broccoli, soy, cabbage, radish, sweet potato, peach, avocado, and mustard greens. However, properly cooking these vegetables and fruits can cause the goitrogens to be inactive.
Seaweeds such as nori, kelp, and kombu help treat hypothyroidism, as they are a great source of iodine, B vitamins, riboflavin, and pantothenic acid.
This help upregulate the production of thyroid hormones, improve mood, prevent lethargy and improve brain function. You can have up to 150 mcg of seaweed per day.
Low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese are rich in iodine and selenium that help stimulate the production and activation of thyroid hormones. They are also rich in the amino acid tyrosine, which helps fight the symptoms of hypothyroidism, such as depression and fatigue.
You can drink a glass of milk, 1/2 cup of yogurt, and ⅙ cup of cheese daily to increase thyroid hormone levels.
Beef and chicken:
Your thyroid function can also be accelerated by providing your body with the required amounts of zinc. It is found mainly in beef and chicken and can help convert triiodothyronine (T3) into thyroxine (T4).
This conversion is of great importance because T3 is the inactive form, while T4 is the active form of the thyroid hormone. Consume at least 3 ounces of chicken breast or lean cuts of meat to increase thyroxine production.
Eggs are a great source of iodine and can help relieve hypothyroidism. You can consume two whole eggs per day.
Do not consume the yolk if you already have high cholesterol levels. Otherwise, you can consume whole eggs rich in fat-soluble vitamins and other valuable nutrients for your body.
Seafood such as shrimp and lobsters contains iodine and zinc. And as you know, iodine and zinc can help increase the production of thyroid hormones. You can safely consume at least 3 oz of shellfish to improve your thyroid levels.
Start cooking with olive oil if you do not use it already. Olive oil is rich in healthy fats and nutrients that help increase thyroid hormone levels.
Olive oil also helps reduce LDL cholesterol, which allows you to lose weight and keep your heart healthy. You can use up to 10 tablespoons of olive oil per day.
Flax seeds are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, selenium, and iodine. You can consume ground flax seeds with your breakfast cereal or shake or use flaxseed oil for cooking.
You can have 2-3 tablespoons of ground flaxseed powder and two tablespoons of oil per day.
Legumes are rich in iodine and zinc and do not contain gluten. You can consume lentils, beans, bean sprouts, chickpeas, etc., to increase thyroid hormone secretion.
Foods rich in fiber:
Add fiber-rich foods to your diet because you probably also suffer from indigestion and constipation if you suffer from hypothyroidism.
Include foods such as papaya, cooked green leafy vegetables, and whole grains without gluten to improve digestion.
Water helps to hydrate and eliminate toxins. Drink 3-4 liters of clean water daily to help your cells function correctly.
Although water may not directly help fight hypothyroidism, drinking enough can help your organs function properly.
Raw fruits and vegetables:
Crude cruciferous vegetables or leafy green vegetables are goitrogens; they inhibit the production of thyroid hormones. This is precisely what you need since your thyroid overproduces thyroid hormones.
Consume broccoli, spinach, kale, Chinese cabbage, cabbage, lettuce, carrot, cauliflower, radish, arugula spinach, Brussels sprouts, pepper, tomato, apple, berries, kiwi, orange, lemon, grapefruit, etc.
Millet and brown rice:
Millet and brown rice also has a high goitrogen activity. They are a great source of dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. You can consume ½ – 1 cup of brown rice or millet daily to suppress the overproduction of thyroid hormone.
Eat chicken breast, fish, mushrooms, soy pieces, and legumes to help develop lean muscle mass.
Hyperthyroidism leads to an increase in appetite and rapid weight loss. Since proteins take much longer to digest, they will keep you full for longer.
When inhibiting the overproduction of thyroid hormones, you should consume green tea. Scientists have found antithyroid activity in green tea due to fluoride. You can drink up to 2 cups of green tea per day.
Basil, oregano, and rosemary are anti-inflammatory and can help relieve the problem of hyperthyroidism.
Three essential rules to follow with any thyroid diet to keep your blood sugar levels stable.
The first is to minimize or eliminate refined foods from your diet. This is because fine foods cause an increase in blood sugar levels, putting a lot of stress on the adrenal glands and the pancreas over months and years.
While it would be ideal to stop eating refined foods altogether, try to minimize the amount you consume.
The second rule involves having breakfast. Although eating a large breakfast every morning is unnecessary, most people with thyroid and autoimmune thyroid diseases should eat something within the first hour after waking up.
This will help keep your blood sugar levels stable and give you the energy to start the day.
You should incorporate some healthy protein and avoid breakfast with a high carbohydrate content (so there are no sugary cereals, pancakes, etc.).
The third and last rule is to eat regularly since you should try not to spend more than a couple of hours between meals when eating breakfast. Again, this will help keep your blood sugar levels stable.
And in addition to helping to minimize the amount of stress on the adrenal glands, eating well and keeping your blood sugar levels stable will also make it easier to lose weight if that is what you are trying to do.
Breakfast: shake consisting of a cup of mixed berries (organic blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries), two cups of purified water, some high-quality protein powder, a little flaxseed oil, a cup filled with vegetables of green leaf, and now and then I will add a raw and organic egg.
Adding the raw organic egg is optional for those who find this disgusting.
Mid-morning snack n. ° 1: ½ cup of organic apples.
Mid-morning snack # 2: 1/4 cup of raw sunflower or pumpkin seeds.
Lunch: Grilled chicken salad (with organic chicken, organic romaine lettuce, or mixed vegetables).
Mid-afternoon snack # 1: ½ cup of small organic carrots or steamed broccoli with garlic and olive oil.
Afternoon snack # 2: Another smoothie.
Dinner: chicken, organic turkey, or wild salmon, plus one or two servings of mixed vegetables.
Refreshment: 1/4 cup of raw almonds.
Ideally, eat at least 3 to 5 servings of vegetables a day.
If you are not a vegetarian, eating organ meats and bone broth has health benefits.
Each person is different since some people have specific allergies and food intolerances, and if someone is dealing with a leaky gut, they may not be able to eat nuts and seeds, as well as some other foods.
As for your thyroid diet, you should try to eat lots of vegetables, ideally eating twice as many vegetables as fruits.
Eating organic chicken and turkey is fine if you’re not a vegetarian, and some wild fish in moderation is delicate. I mentioned the viscera and bone broth earlier since these are healthy options.
Some people want to know if they can eat beef and, in most cases, it’s OK to eat a couple of servings of organic grass-fed meat per week (and if it’s not organic, make sure they feed on grass ).
The nuts and the raw seeds are acceptable, although you do not want to exaggerate. And if you have a leaky gut, you’ll want to avoid all the nuts, grains, and legumes.
Generally, brown or wild rice is OK to eat in moderation, and despite lectins and phytic acid (which is also a problem with nuts and seeds), most people without intestinal problems can eat some beans and lentils.
And if you’re worried about lectins and phytic acid, you can ferment and soak beans, nuts, and seeds. Although I mentioned the rice, you will notice that the diet I listed did not include any grain.