Table of Contents
- 1 Underactive Thyroid – Hypothyroidism Causes, Symptoms and Natural Treatment
- 2 Diet for an Underactive Thyroid
- 3 Foods to Avoid If You Have an Underactive Thyroid Gland
- 4 Thyroid Symptoms in Women – Underactive Thyroid Symptoms
- 5 Underactive Thyroid Treatment and Natural Solutions
Underactive Thyroid – Hypothyroidism Causes, Symptoms and Natural Treatment
Hypothyroidism is related with thyroid gland which is unable to produce enough thyroid hormone which is required by our body. It is even more common than hyperthyroidism. Most of the people are affected by hypothyroidism. The problem of hypothyroidism usually affects women with increasing age. It may be the result of any surgery or any type of treatment against hyperthyroid.
Hyperthyroid grows gradually but one can observe its symptoms suddenly which include severe muscle cramps in the arms, neck, legs, back and shoulders, mental sluggishness, hoarseness, swollen facial features and also enlarged tongue.
The main causes of hypothyroidism –
1. Due to side affect of some medicines though this side affect is also very rare.
2. Infections caused by viruses and bacteria which result into permanent hypothyroidism by depressing the production of thyroid hormone.
3. Due to malfunctioning of pituitary gland.
4. Congenital defect.
5. Iodine deficient diet.
6. Removal of thyroid gland due to cancer or other thyroid disorder result into hypothyroidism.
The main symptoms of hypothyroidism
* General symptoms of hypothyroid slow down the metabolic processes. The general symptoms are weight gain, difficulty in tolerating the cold weather, sluggishness and fatigue.
* Skin becomes dry and thick, decrease sweating, hair also becomes thin or coarse, eyebrows may disappear, and nails also become brittle.
* Mild swelling around the eyes.
* Irregular menstrual cycle, difficulty in pregnancy.
* Respiratory muscles become weak and thus function of the lung decreases.
* Slows the heart rate and the person experiences a short breathe in doing exercises.
* Causes constipation.
* It may cause hypertension and also raises the level of cholesterol.
Some of the natural treatments for hypothyroid –
A sea weed known as Bladder wrack, which is found in several oceans across the globe has proven to a great extent to reduce the symptoms of hypothyroidism. It is rich in iodine content and thus they are very helpful and effective thyroid stimulant. It also restores the function of thyroid gland. A person suffering from thyroid must take 600mg Bladder wrack capsules 1-3 times a day with water.
A perennial plant known as Black Cohosh is basically found in North America. It is very effective in the treatment of thyroid and they are available in the market as dietary supplement.
A natural herb known as Nettle is very helpful in treating thyroid. This herb is rich in iodine and it is naturally found in the temperate regions. It is very beneficial to treat the condition of hypothyroid.
Diet for an Underactive Thyroid
Thousands of people develop an under active thyroid each year in different parts of the world. When the thyroid gland becomes underactive, it manufactures less thyroid hormone and the condition is known clinically as hypothyroidism.
If the hormonal imbalance is not corrected, an individual will start to develop symptoms such as puffiness around the face, thinning hair, stunted growth (in children and teenagers), sudden weight gain, and so forth.
The condition can quickly deteriorate if it is not properly diagnosed and treated. If you suspect that you have developed hypothyroidism, you should see your healthcare professional who will do a proper diagnosis. However, if you have already developed hypothyroidism, and are already being treated by a qualified doctor, here are a few tips to help you improve your health.
1. Alter Your Diet
You need to modify your diet so as to correct the hormonal imbalance you are experiencing. Happily, you can get rid of all the excess body fat that you have accumulated as a result of your condition, merely by altering your diet. Now is the best time to improve your diet and overall lifestyle.
2. Eat Intelligently
Many times, people will consume unhealthy foods due to convenience. It is true that time is a scarce commodity in people’s lives and there is simply not enough time to do everything that needs to be done. But, you need to realize that it is very important that you take care of your body. If your health breaks down, all other things will have to wait.
Thus, do not allow things to degenerate to this level. Do everything in your power to preserve your health, even if you are suffering from hypothyroidism. Get rid of processed or junk foods from your daily diet and replace them with whole foods.
It’s okay to relapse once in a while, however that should make up only about 20% of your food intake. Fresh seafood, whole grains, vegetables, fresh fruits and dairy products (low fat) should make up the remaining 80 percent of your diet. If you continue to eat processed or junk foods on a regular basis, you might end up disrupting your hormone balance. This is because junk foods contain high amounts of preservatives which disrupt the natural hormone balance of the body.
3. Eat More Dietary Fibre
Ensure that your daily diet contains sufficient quantities of dietary fibre. Vegetables and certain fruits are excellent sources of dietary fibre. However, fruits like all other foods must never be consumed in excess, as fruits are high in fruit sugars or fructose.
Fructose is actually a simple carbohydrate, and consuming it in excess can sharply increase your blood sugar levels and lead to weight gain. Also, do not consume high fibre foods just before you take your thyroid drugs. This is because thyroid drugs are usually taken without food to boost absorption as well as bioavailability of the artificial hormones.
Iodine is important for the proper functioning of the thyroid gland. Iodized salt does not contain sufficient quantities of iodine, thus do not try to obtain your iodine from iodized salt only. Instead, you should eat sea foods on a regular basis so as to increase your iodine stores without consuming too much salt.
Foods to Avoid If You Have an Underactive Thyroid Gland
Do you find it difficult to get out of bed even after a good night’s sleep? Do you feel exhausted after doing small chores around the house? Well, if this is the case, an underactive thyroid gland may be to blame. This heart shaped gland located in your neck area is the CEO of your whole hormonal system. It regulates your metabolism, how you spend energy and how you manage fatigue and activity levels. When it is working properly, everything is great: you are active all day, you enjoy outdoor activities and you can eat anything you want without gaining weight.
On the other hand, when the thyroid gland is slow, everything goes south. Fatigue, uncontrollable weight gain, confusion, slow heart pulse, headaches, constipation and coarse skin are just a few of the most common hypothyroidism symptoms. Some of them can be treated with drugs and replacement hormones, but not all patients respond well to this treatment.
This is why most physicians and endocrinologists recommend a healthy diet, an active lifestyle and other natural home therapy methods which can boost your metabolism. Of course, there are foods that you should eat, and there are foods that you should avoid. Knowing which the ones to avoid are is very important, as it can safeguard you from further complications and additional symptoms.
1. Avoid refined grains and gluten rich cereals
Refined grains are, in fact, grains that were processed by food companies to make them more “delicious” for the general consumer. While this may satisfy the taste buds of the average person out there, the nutritional content of these grains is affected and this is not very good for hypothyroidism patients.
The refined grains are lower in fibre and protein when compared to the unprocessed grains and this may result in a poorer balance of blood sugar levels, energy levels and appetite. Physicians and dieticians recommend a fibre and protein-rich diet, based mainly on whole foods, fresh vegetables and fruits. These foods will help your metabolism and control your weight. Whole grains, like brown rice, quinoa and barley are good alternatives to refined grain products, such as breads, enriched cereals and pastas.
2. Don’t over-eat certain vegetables
Vegetables are very good for most people and are essential ingredients for any healthy diet out there. They are jam packed with micronutrients (minerals and vitamins) as well as fibre, protein and natural sugars.
But while most vegetables are good for your overall health, there are some vegetables that should be eaten in moderate amounts. These include the cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, mustard greens and kale. They can limit the thyroid gland activity because they are goitrogenic, but a normal diet won’t affect your thyroid.
3. Avoid fatty meats
Meat is an excellent source of protein and animal fats, as well as micronutrients, like iron, vitamins B6 and B12. But meats that are excessively fat, like pork or certain beef cuts have too much fat, which can hinder thyroid gland activity. They can cause inflammation, high blood pressure, raise cholesterol levels, nausea or other symptoms.
Try to choose healthier alternatives as protein sources, such as low fat meats (oceanic fish – tuna, mackerel, cod or Pollock), but also protein rich seeds, like lentils or quinoa and fortified cereals. Keep in mind that fish meat (especially salmon and other cold water fish) is extremely good for your health, thanks to its high amount of omega-3 fats, which act as good anti-inflammatory.
4. Avoid added sugars in foods
Sugar is a great ingredient that is often found in almost all foods. It is added by food companies to enhance the flavour and improve the shelf life of most products. Consuming too much food that contains added sugar may be detrimental to your overall health, especially if you suffer from hypothyroidism.
Excessive sugar can cause an uncontrollable weight gain, can be an important factor for type II diabetes and will raise the cholesterol levels in your blood. Also, if you eat a lot of sugar rich foods, there will be little room for the more healthy foods – the whole foods that we discussed about before. You will feel filled, but the quality of the food will not help you much in the long run.
Try to avoid, as much as possible, ice cream, cookies, soft drinks, frosting, pancake syrup, various desserts and pastry products, such as donuts and muffins. If you really want to indulge in these delightful desserts, it is recommended to eat only small portions. Also, you may want to replace these products with “natural desserts”, like honey and sweet fruits, like watermelon, pears and oranges.
Thyroid Symptoms in Women – Underactive Thyroid Symptoms
Although many women experience per menopause weight gain, they should also be aware that another health related condition, hypothyroidism, may also contribute to those additional pounds.
The thyroid gland, located in the front part of the neck, is basically the gas pedal for the whole body. It controls metabolism and keeps the body functioning effectively. When the thyroid gland does not work efficiently, it can produce many types of different symptoms including weight gain.
The majority of people affected by hypothyroidism are women, and the risk increases during pregnancy and with age.
Many health experts say that all women should have their thyroid gland levels checked beginning in their thirties. Most people who suffer from hypothyroidism don’t realize they have the condition because symptoms appear gradually over time. Many women consider the symptoms to be a part of getting older, or they associate the symptoms with perimenopause.
Keep in mind that many hypothyroid thyroid symptoms can vary widely depending how deficient the hormone. If you suffer from some or all of the following symptoms, be sure to get your thyroid checked by your doctor:
- Unexplained weight gain
- Extreme fatigue
- Sensitivity to cold
- Puffy face
- Brittle nails
- Pale, dry skin
- High cholesterol
- Aches, stiffness and joint pain
If you have hypothyroidism and it’s not treated by a doctor, the symptoms will most likely continue and become more severe over time. Eventually, you may also experience goitre (enlarged thyroid).
Thyroid Blood Tests
If you believe you may be having hypothyroidism, your doctor should perform a blood test to check your thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) level. Hynes warns that several doctors make a diagnosis based solely on a standard test, but some health experts believe the standard TSH test is still not effective enough to catch many cases of hypothyroidism.
Be sure to ask your doctor for a full thyroid panel, cautions Hynes: “TSH, free circulating T4, T3 and reverse T3.” Also make sure your doctor takes the time to listen to how you’re feeling especially if your thyroid test results are in the normal range and you have hypothyroid symptoms. Some experts recommend treating patients for hypothyroidism even if their TSH levels fall in the normal range.
Underactive Thyroid Treatment and Natural Solutions
Do you have an underactive thyroid? Did you know that as much as 20% of all women have an underactive thyroid? Symptoms can be debilitating and include extreme fatigue, sensitivity to cold, depression and weight gain. Many people with an underactive thyroid don’t even realize they have a problem. When they finally do, many turn to synthetic thyroid hormones prescribed by their physician. Did you know that there are natural underactive thyroid treatments that work with your body to help you feel better?
Natural Underactive Thyroid Treatment Vs Synthetic
Naturally-made underactive thyroid treatment options, such as Thyromine can help your body to increase the activity of the thyroid gland to produce adequate amounts of thyroid hormone. These products have far fewer risks than synthetic hormone treatment, because they work with the body’s innate ability to adjust hormone levels to meet demand. This means more available thyroid hormone in your body, made by your body, not in a lab. Once your thyroid levels increase naturally, you will begin to feel the benefits.
Underactive Thyroid Treatment Results:
Once you take steps toward underactive thyroid treatment, you will notice that you have more energy throughout the day. You’ll need less sleep and you will lose weight without having to reduce your food intake to a ridiculously low level. The depression you felt is lifted and your mood is changed to one of happiness and a new zest for life. Your moods also don’t fluctuate wildly and you feel good all day. Isn’t that an amazing change? It’s possible, with just a simple supplement.
Underactive Thyroid Treatment: Thyromine
If you suffer from an underactive thyroid and you are concerned about synthetic thyroid treatments, consider a natural approach. A product such as Thyromine can help boost your body’s natural thyroid hormone levels without side effects from artificial drugs. It makes sense to choose a product that works with your body’s ability to heal itself, rather than adding a substance that is foreign to the body. Natural thyroid treatment is the right choice if you want to feel better without relying on medication alone.
Sabyasachi Rakshit is involved in healthcare market research since 2010. He loves to write about various healthcare topics such as herbal medicines, alternative health etc.