The thyroid is a butterfly shaped endocrine gland that produces specific hormones, which can have a powerful impact on a number of vital bodily functions. Hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland does not produce sufficient amounts of the hormones T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (thyroxine).An underactive thyroid gland or the state of hypothyroidism, can in turn lead to a significant slowing down of the metabolic functions of the body, besides unleashing a host of unpleasant symptoms which includes sudden but significant drop in body temperature, puffiness around the eyes and excessive fatigue. A combination of medication and simple dietary changes can to a large extent cure this particular endocrine disorder. Incorporating specific types of foods and avoiding others can vastly improve thyroid function. Some vital dietary changes for hypothyroidism are revealed in this article.
Dietary Changes For Hypothyroidism
Increase Intake of Iodine Rich Food
One of the top causes of hypothyroidism around the world is iodine deficiency. The best way to improve the function of an underactive thyroid gland is to incorporate plenty of iodine rich foods into the daily diet. Eating a diet that is rich in iodine can to a large extent control the progression of hypothyroidism by increasing the production of the essential T3 and T4 thyroid hormones. People suffering from hypothyroidism should eat dried sea weed, Navy beans, baked potato and tuna (to name a few). Most importantly, individuals with hypothyroidism should be encouraged to switch from ordinary table salt to iodized salt to flavor food.
Eat Plenty of Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
Fresh fruits and vegetables contain a variety of nutrients which can help to boost the function of an underactive thyroid gland. Ideally, people who suffer from hypothyroidism are encouraged to eat fruits and vegetables raw, as most cooking processes can destroy vital nutrients. Additionally, medical research has also indicated that consuming fresh fruit and vegetable juices can to a large extent improve the function of an underactive thyroid gland. Furthermore, most fresh fruits and vegetables contain significant amounts of iodine which in turn can help to promote the production of thyroid hormones.
Increase Intake of Selenium Rich Foods
Selenium like iodine is known to improve hypothyroidism condition vastly. A recent medical research concluded that hypothyroidism in a significant number of adults was the result of selenium deficiency. The trace element selenium, not only aids in maintaining the body metabolic function, but it also plays a significant role in the conversion of the thyroid hormone T3 and T4. A consistently low dietary intake of selenium can in the long run even lead to irreversible damage to the thyroid gland. Brazil nuts, kidney, liver and shellfish like crab are some important dietary sources of selenium.
Avoid Consumption of Processed Foods
If you are diagnosed with hypothyroidism, then avoid processed foods at all cost. Eating processed foods that actually worsen the symptoms of hypothyroidism. Most processed foods contain chemicals and Trans fat which can interfere with the synthesis of thyroid hormone like T3 and T4. Furthermore, processed foods contain high amounts of sugar. A significant increase in blood sugar levels can in the long run interfere with normal thyroid function.
Increase Intake of Saturated Fats
It has been ingrained in our psyche that fats are bad for health. However, fats are essential for hormone production. Saturated fat is considered the worst kind of fat as it linked to coronary diseases. However, consuming small quantities of saturated fats may actually be good for the system. Saturated fats can actually boost thyroid function as it contains certain thyroid stimulating elements. Ideally, eat natural foods which are rich in saturated fats (instead of processed foods) to boost thyroid and metabolic function. Organic palm oil, organic coconut oil and hemp seeds are some examples of natural foods rich in saturated fats.