Discover The Best Foods for Thyroid Health
The two common disorders of the thyroid gland are hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. These are two opposing health conditions. The first is caused by slow thyroid function while the latter is due to speedy thyroid performance.
Hypothyroidism is defined as the thyroid’s inability to produce thyroid hormones. This can be due to iodine deficiency, radioactive iodine therapy, Hashimoto’s disease, surgery, and medication. Whatever the cause may be, your diet can help regulate the symptoms and manage the effects.
On the other hand, hyperthyroidism is characterized by an overactive thyroid gland. This leads to the overproduction of thyroid hormones. The most common ailments that cause a hyperactive thyroid gland are Grave’s disease, toxic thyroid adenoma, and toxic multinodular goiter.
Though it doesn’t have a recommended diet plan, eating the right food may suppress thyroid synthesis, alleviate signs and symptoms, and lessen the effects of the condition.
Listed below are some of the best foods for thyroid.
Foods for Hypothyroidism
Iodine is a naturally occurring element that is needed for the production of thyroid hormone. Since our body doesn’t make iodine, we have to get it through the foods we eat. If for some reason your body fails to make enough thyroid hormone, an iodine deficiency can lead to enlargement of the thyroid, hypothyroidism, and mental retardation in infants and children whose mothers were iodine deficient during their pregnancy.
Seaweeds are naturally high in iodine, which makes them among the best foods for thyroid. Seaweeds are often referred to as “the food” to improve the thyroid’s ability to increase thyroid synthesis and hormone production.
Fish is not only beneficial for its omega-3 fatty acids but is also a good source of dietary iodine. This helps hasten a slow thyroid function. Compared to other kinds of fish, deep sea fish are among the best sources of dietary iodine.
Aside from iodine, fish is a good source of selenium. This essential trace element is known for its ability to decrease inflammation and is highly concentrated in the thyroid.
Beans are rich in complex carbohydrates, zinc, protein, iron, anti-oxidants, and vitamins B and C. Furthermore, beans are also a good source of selenium. Beans provide the body with sustainable energy which helps patients regain their strength drained by the effects of an underactive thyroid.
Its high fiber density helps improve constipation, which is common in hypothyroidism patients. The recommended dose of fiber for adults per day is 20 to 35 grams. Just make sure not to consume more than the recommended dose to avoid possible fiber interference with your medical treatment.
Dairy and eggs
A study published in the journal “Thyroid” explained that vitamin D deficiency is directly co-related to Hashimoto’s disease, which is one of the common causes of Hypothyroidism. Milk is rich in protein, iodine, calcium, and fortified with vitamin D. Eggs stand as the highest source of iodine with their 16% recommended daily value. Yogurt is also a good alternative with its added good bacteria (probiotics).
ALSO READ: Probiotics 101
Foods for Hyperthyroidism
This gluten-free grain is not only nutritious but also one of the best foods for the thyroid due to its goitrogen content, which helps suppress iodine absorption by interfering with thyroid hormone synthesis. Cooking millet diminishes the possible effects of goitrogen.
You could try sprouted millet instead. CLICK HERE for a sprouting tutorial.
Cruciferous vegetables are known for being the best foods for an overactive thyroid. They should, however, be eaten in moderation and cooked if you are struggling with an underactive thyroid gland.
Cruciferous vegetables include cabbage, broccoli, kohlrabi, rapini, cauliflower, and turnips. These vegetables naturally contain goitrin, a compound that is responsible for inhibiting thyroid hormone synthesis, which is overly active in hyperthyroidism.
But, goitrin is only released via hydrolysis so the best way to release it is by eating raw cruciferous vegetables. Cooking vegetables are not recommended because heat denatures goitrin.
Fermented Soy Foods
Another great food to treat and overactive thyroid is unfermented soy products. These are highly beneficial due to their isoflavones, a type of a goitrogen or better known as thyroid hormone suppressant. But, fermented soy consumption should be regulated because it contains phytic acid and anti-nutrients that hinder our body’s mineral absorption.
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