Your thyroid, a butterfly-shaped gland in your neck below your Adam’s apple, is your chief gland of energy and metabolism and is a like a master lever that fires up the genes that keep cells doing their jobs. You can think of the thyroid as a fundamental mechanism in a complex machine, as every cell in your body has thyroid hormone receptors. Hypothyroidism, or low thyroid function, is a silent epidemic according to many functional medicine doctors. People can suffer for years with symptoms that our conventional medical system frequently doesn’t how to treat because complaints seem scattered or vague and often there is no pill. What is worse, in most cases, hypothyroidism isn’t rooted in a thyroid problem in the first place. It is rooted in an immune system gone awry, but most doctors don’t test for the antibodies that show the presence of autoimmunity.
The best offence is a dietary defence
Making dietary changes is your first line of defense in treating hypothyroidism. Many people with hypothyroidism experience crippling fatigue and brain fog which prompts reaching for non-nutritional forms of energy like sugar and caffeine. These can be dubbed as the “terrible two-some” as they can burn out your thyroid!
- Just say no to the dietary bungee cord – greatly reduce or eliminate caffeine and sugar as well as refined carbohydrates like flour.
- Up the protein – protein transports thyroid hormone to all your tissues and enjoying it at each meal can help normalize thyroid function.
- Get fat – fat is your friend and cholesterol is the pre-cursor to hormonal pathways. If you are getting insufficient fat and cholesterol, you could be exacerbating hormonal imbalance, which includes thyroid hormones.
- Nutrient up – While nutritional deficiencies may not be the cause of hypothyroidism, not having enough of these micronutrients and minerals can aggravate symptoms.
- Go 100% gluten free – The molecular composition of thyroid tissue is almost identical to that of gluten. So for those suffering from Hashimoto’s, it’s a case of mistaken identity. Eating gluten can increase the autoimmune attack on your thyroid.
- Address underlying food sensitivities – just like the body’s attack on the thyroid in the presence of Hashimoto’s, the body will also offending or inflammatory foods as an invader and will up the ante on the autoimmune response.
- Do a gut check – a whopping 20% of thyroid function depends on a sufficient supply of healthy gut bacteria, so it is best to supplement with pro-biotics.
- Address silent inflammation with whole foods nutrition.
- Address adrenal fatigue – there is an intimate connection between your thyroid and adrenal glands and it is uncommon to have hypothyroidism without some level of adrenal fatigue.
- Look at your stressors and practice relaxation – the thyroid is a very sensitive gland and is exceptionally reactive to the stress response.
Try these few hints and suggestions when dealing with your hypothyroidism and you should be able to keep it under control.
Finding natural ways to deal with health problems is what Dr Alain Sanua does best. From irritable bowel syndrome to dealing with thyroid problems, Dr Alain Sanua will find the best way to assist you.