Ways To Stimulate An Underactive Thyroid Naturally
Your thyroid is a small but very important gland which produces hormones that have an impact on every organ, cell, and tissue in your body. Just a few of the things your thyroid influences are your body temperature, heart rate, metabolism, body weight, and energy production.
It has been estimated that about 27 million Americans suffer from some type of thyroid disorder, with about 50 percent of these people going undiagnosed. Your chance of developing a thyroid disorder increases as you age. Women are more likely to be diagnosed with thyroid problems than men, although either gender can develop thyroid problems.
When your thyroid gland doesnt produce enough hormones your doctor will call it hypothyroidism. Common causes of hypothyroidism are exposure to heavy metals or radiation, food intolerances, even hormone imbalances. Many people go undiagnosed because the symptoms are vague and are often overlooked by doctors.
Some common symptoms of hypothyroidism are weight gain, headaches, dizziness, dry skin, extreme fatigue and depression, heavy or irregular menstruation, sensitivity to cold and cold fingers and feet.
After you have spoken to your doctor, you can try the following 10 steps to reset your thyroid so that you can reduce or completely eliminate your medication.
Sample Hypothyroidism Meal Plan
A meal plan for someone with hypothyroidism should be based on a physician’s or dietitian’s advice and your body’s specific needs.
A starting point for someone who needs a low-iodine diet can be found at the American Thyroid Association’s website. If it’s determined your underactive thyroid is caused by Addison’s disease or adrenal insufficiency, start with these diet tips.
But despite the abundance of books and websites promoting a sample hypothyroidism diet plan, there’s no evidence that a certain course of foods will affect thyroid function. Pay attention to the nutrients your body needs or doesn’t needie., iodinebe aware of foods, drinks and supplements that can interact with any medication you’re taking, and work with your health-care professional to go from there.
Contact Dr Hagmeyer Today
Tired of Struggling? Need Answers? Schedule A Free Phone Consultation with Dr. Hagmeyer. If youre experiencing symptoms of hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism, or believe your thyroid gland isnt functioning properly, contact me today. Ive helped a wide range of patients find the root cause of their symptoms and can help you find a solution that works for you. To Schedule a Free 15 minute Phone Consult to see if this program is right for you
Were here to listen and help you through this frustrating and confusing time.
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Add Iodine To Your Diet
According to the American Thyroid Association, iodine deficiency is a major cause of underproduction of the thyroid hormone. The association notes that your body does not create iodine on its own, so its important to ensure it becomes part of your diet.
The association suggests trying iodine-rich foodsincluding eggs, saltwater fish, shellfish, cheese, and even straight up table salt added to food. However, keep in mind that its probably not advisable to eat a spoonful of salt on its own.
Some Of The Main Causes Of Thyroid Dysfunction:
1. Autoimmune issues Your bodys signals are crossed.There are many underlying reasons for thyroid problems. The most common cause is an autoimmune thyroid problem like Hashimotos or Graves disease, in which your immune system attacks your thyroid gland. Various research estimates that up to 90 percent of all cases of hypothyroidism are autoimmune in nature, with the most common result being Hashimotos disease. When this happens, your thyroid is not the source of the problem, but the victim of a misguided immune system attack in which your body mistakes your thyroid for a virus.
2. Treatment over-response Could destroy your thyroid.Hyperthyroidism is often treated with radioactive iodine or anti-thyroid medications. The goal of these treatments is to get thyroid function back to normal. But sometimes, correcting hyperthyroidism can end up lowering thyroid hormone production too much, or destroying it, resulting in permanent hypothyroidism.
3. Stress Impacting more than just your emotions.Stress can negatively impact your body in a variety of ways, including your thyroid function. Cortisol, your main stress hormone, can inhibit or block proper thyroid hormone conversion, leaving you thyroid resistant.
4. Medications Side effects that could harm you.A number of medications can contribute to hypothyroidism. One such medication is lithium, which is used to treat certain psychiatric disorders.
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Optimize Adrenal Function & Manage Stress
Another important way to increase your free T3 is by focusing on your adrenals.
Your adrenals sit on top of your kidneys and they produce important hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline.
These hormones are released during times of stress, so the more stress you are under the more hormones your body will produce.
This is a good thing, up to a certain point.
But if this system is overstimulated then it can start to drag down other hormone systems such as your thyroid.
It has been shown that as cortisol increases your TSH may increase as well .
This scenario may lead to characteristic symptoms including:
- Debilitating fatigue even after a good night sleep
- “Wired but tired” sensation
- Increased energy at night and no energy in the morning
- Constant weight gain
The good news is that you can take certain steps to help fix these symptoms and improve your adrenal function:
Improve Your Thyroid Health Today
If left untreated, an irregular thyroid can develop into more severe problems. These include heart disease, infertility, bone, and muscular disorders. For persons with irregular thyroids, seek advice from a doctor and talk about natural medicine. Also, consider getting a high-quality supplement for thyroid health from a pharmacist.
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Tips For Weight Loss With Hypothyroidism
People with hypothyroidism may gain weight more easily than people without the condition. This is because hypothyroidism can slow metabolism.
Having a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, filling proteins, and healthy fats can help manage weight and boost well-being. These foods are also rich in fiber, which may help people feel fuller for longer.
In addition, regular moderate- to high-intensity aerobic exercise and strength training can help boost metabolism and promote weight loss. Staying active can also improve levels of energy and the quality of sleep.
In addition, a person may notice a small weight reduction typically under 10% when they take medication to treat hypothyroidism.
How Do You Know If Anything Is Working
The clearest, and often first, thing to change will be your TSH scores. A TSH score moving downward means that there is more thyroid hormone coming in.
Assuming that you are on thyroid medication, and assuming that you didnt recently change the dose, a lowering TSH means that you are making more on your own.
Heres a quick tip: I encourage people not to put a whole lot of weight into a single TSH reading. Its better to see a trend, so a sudden drop may not be telling the whole story.
In short, youll want to work with your doctor at this point to help lower your dosage so that your TSH can stay in a good range .
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Sip Some Orange Juice
Low sugar everything has been the craze now for the past couple of years and look around. What has this wonderful bit of advice done for people? Sure, at first you might feel a little better, but thats your body in survival mode with excitatory but thyroid suppressing adrenaline coursing through your veins.
Theres a reason why you cant sustain that type of diet long term and you are eventually left with a severely damaged metabolism, severe hypothyroidism, and feeling ten times worse than when you started.
Orange juice is yet another thyroid friendly food that has been mistakenly feared for the past decade because of its unwarranted association with common inflammatory diseases like diabetes. Yet research studies show that orange juice does not cause any oxidative or inflammatory response5, making it extremely beneficial not only for hypothyroid sufferers but for diabetics too.
Simply sipping on some orange juice can cause a significant rise in your T3 thyroid hormone levels. And not to mention, its been shown to protect against certain cancers, including colon cancer6.
Yet the amazing thyroid boosting benefits of orange juice have NOTHING to do with your thyroid gland at all. In fact, heres the secret: if you continue to focus entirely on your thyroid gland, then youll never improve your thyroid health.
Lower Your Reverse T3
Reverse T3 and T3 are inversely proportional to each other. As one rises, the other will fall and vice-versa.
That is because they both are produced from T4.
So reducing your reverse T3 production will mean that more T4 is being converted into T3.
So how do you do it?
Think of the reverse T3 level as indirect marker of inflammation in the body. Any inflammation will typically cause the reverse T3 level to rise.
Therefore, most of the things I list below address various forms of inflammation.
Reverse Insulin Resistance and Leptin Resistance
High levels of insulin and leptin tell your body to create MORE reverse T3.
It will be very difficult to lower your reverse T3 levels unless you address these issues.
to read more about how to treat insulin resistance and to read more about how to treat leptin resistance.
High Intensity Interval Training
Adding HIIT exercise to your regular routine will create a demand for more thyroid hormone in your body.
In effect, it will push your T4 conversion more down the T3 pathway and reduce your reverse T3.
Stop Restricting Your Calories
Calorie-restricted diets will put your body into starvation mode. When that happens, T3 production is rapidly reduced and reverse T3 levels soar.
This is one of the ways that excessive calorie restriction damages your metabolism. to read more.
These can include other autoimmune conditions, environmental toxins, and even obesity itself.
Take a T3 Medication
Common Signs & Symptoms Of Hypothyroidism
I had thyroid problems long before I knew what was going on. Its easy to miss the common symptoms of hypothyroidism among other normal aspects of life. For me, I was having babies, not sleeping much because of that, and struggling to lose weight because I thought that was normal for being postpartum.
But in reality, my symptoms were way more extreme than they should have been. The thyroid can produce so many different symptoms when its not behaving right. Some people will have a lot of them, others may only have one or two noticeable signs. This is where proper testing makes all the difference in getting answers.
What are the symptoms of hypothyroidism to look out for?
Natural Remedies For Thyroid Issues
So for starters, the No. 1 natural remedy you need to start to support the thyroid is ashwagandha, which is proven to heal thyroid and adrenal issues. Ashwagandha is known as an adaptogenic herb. Adaptogen herbs mean they help you adapt and deal with stress, and ashwagandha has been used for thousands of years in Chinese medicine.
Other adaptogenic herbs can include things like tulsi or holy basil also things like rhodiola and ginseng and licorice root. All of those are adaptogen herbs, but ashwagandha may be the most effective at naturally supporting overall thyroid health, especially as a natural treatment for hypothyroidism and Hashimotos. In fact, in the studies on it, it was actually shown to help both hyper and hypothyroid symptoms, which is amazing.
So, you should definitely add ashwagandha to your hypothyroidism diet since it works as a way to treat hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism.
The No. 2 thing you should consider adding in to overall improve your thyroid function is selenium. The benefits of selenium are critical actually, selenium has very powerful antioxidant-like functions. In fact, studies have shown that selenium helps balance out T4 in your body hormones, so again, taking a therapeutic dose of selenium every day has also been shown to benefit thyroid function.
There are also foods high in selenium you can consume, including:
- Brazil nuts
- Raw cheese
5. Proteolytic Enzymes
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What Are The Best Foods For Thyroid Function
What are some foods that are good for the thyroid? First off, certain nutrients are key for boosting thyroid health, especially if youâre at risk of iodine deficiency . Without sufficient iodine intake your thyroid wonât be able to produce enough hormonesâwhich can lead to hypothyroidism .
So if youâre looking for iodine-rich foods to help thyroid function, here are several nutritious options:
- Roasted seaweed
- Iodized salt
Adding these thyroid-boosting foods to your diet may help improve functioning and health. If you arenât able to get enough iodine from your diet, you may want to discuss taking an iodine supplement with your healthcare providerâbut itâs important to note that you shouldnât take these supplements without first speaking with your healthcare provider. Thatâs because itâs also possible to take in too much iodine .
In general, an adult shouldnât consume more than 1100 mcg of iodine per day. If you do approach that maximum daily intake, and your iodine levels rise too high, you may develop serious side effects, including stomach pain and bloating, fever, and diarrhea. Additionally, your thyroid gland may become enlarged , or you may develop thyroid inflammation.
Wondering what the best foods for hypothyroidism are? Read the section below to learn more about diet and hypothyroidism.
Nutrition For Thyroid Health
Of course, eating healthier can improve your overall wellness, possibly even your thyroid conditions. Food allergens and toxins can trigger Hashimotos hypothyroidism.
If you can fix your condition with dietary changes, you dont really need dietary supplements.
A healthy diet can eliminate toxins, lessen inflammation, and regulate hormones to help with thyroid issues. Our guide to a hypothyroidism diet can help you get started!
Some experts suggest the Autoimmune Paleo diet for 3-6 months to eliminate and identify potential inflammatory triggers from your diet. If your thyroid disorder improves, we know it was due to food triggers.
Once your condition improves, we will slowly reintroduce foods into your diet. If your condition worsens after adding a certain food, we will re-eliminate the food from your diet.
Pregnant women should not adhere to the Autoimmune Paleo diet.
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Bonus Natural Thyroid Booster Goji Berries
While goji berries arent directly a thyroid boosting food, their indirect benefits make them incredibly worthwhile. Theyre rich in antioxidants, are associated with longevity, and are powerful adaptogenics which help bring everything back into balance. Youll see that Im a big believer in adaptogens as they work with the body rather than forcing it to do something like a drug does. This means over time they help correct disorders and are safe for anyone to take regardless of their specific health concerns.
Whether or not a person suffers from thyroid problems, taking more foods like goji berries can have a huge impact on overall health and well-being.
Thyroid Diet Foods To Avoid
These foods listed below may disrupt your thyroid function:
There are some studies showing that the isoflavones in soybeans can inhibit the enzyme which adds iodine to the thyroid hormone known as thyroid peroxidase . These studies indicate that soy isoflavone might bond with the iodine we do have, diminishing the reserve for thyroid production. The issue lies with the levels of iodine we have. If levels are sufficient, eating natural soy should not be a problem. Natural soy is a tremendous help to many women in regulating menopause symptoms, so this is an important nutrient to consider.
Brassica Family of Vegetables
This group of vegetables includes brussel sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, and cabbage, which studies show can reduce the thyroid hormone in a similar way to soy. An enlarged thyroid, called a goiter, is linked to iodine deficiency. The compounds categorized as goitrogens can be found in small amounts in many other foods as well, including spinach, peanuts, and strawberries. Its ok to eat them, but by pairing them with iodine-rich foods, we can counteract the metabolization reducing iodine. Cooking or steaming these vegetables can help break down the goitrogenic compounds.
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What Can I Do To Support My Thyroid
Tip #1: Optimize your nutrition
Thyroid supportive foods include foods rich in iodine, zinc, omega-3 fats, selenium, and more. Foods such as roasted seaweed, salted nuts, baked fish, frozen yogurt, and fresh organic eggs are great options Diets that are also free from sugar and gluten may make a difference in the way that you feel!
Tip #2: Minimize stress on the body
Stress causes your hormones to constantly work harder than they need to and prevents weight loss! It also leads to many other hormone imbalances that can mimic some of the same symptoms of thyroid dysfunction. Therefore it is very important to incorporate stress management techniques into your daily routine.
Tip #3: Add low impact exercise into your daily routine
Exercises including walking, yoga, pilates, and resistance training allow your hormones to be naturally supported. With the thyroid gland specifically, exercise has been shown to boost thyroid function.
Tip #4: Incorporate high-quality supplements
High quality supplements are needed for proper thyroid metabolism and function.
Supplements like vitamin D, zinc, iodine, omega-3 fats, and selenium support your thyroid and adrenal glands.
Tip #5: Utilize heat therapy
Using heat therapy, such as a sauna or even a hot steam shower, has been shown to eliminate toxins which can store up in the body and prevent the thyroid from functioning properly.
Tip #6: Add B vitamins
Tip #7: Include probiotics
Tip #8: Work with your medical provider