The thyroid is the butterfly-shaped hormonal gland that is positioned in your throat. The hormones, (labeled T4, T3, T2, T1, and calcitonin) act as chemical messengers that deliver instructions to your organs and tissues via the bloodstream.
The thyroid is responsible for telling cells what to do and when to do it. Essentially, if the thyroid isn’t working properly, your whole body can become affected. From causing fatigue, insomnia, weight gain, joint pain, depression, and a whole host of other hormonal-related problems, it’s in your best interest to ensure your thyroid is functioning properly.
Want to give it a helping hand? Here are 5 foods and vitamins that are beneficial, and 5 you should avoid:
5 Foods For Your Thyroid
First off, let’s share the best foods to boost thyroid health and prevent common health issues down the line:
Not sure how to implement these foods into your daily meals? The Lucy Rose Clinic website features several recipes that can be easily made at home. They even offer free consultations to help support your health and diet.
Seaweed, and other marine algae, including kelp, wakame, and Mori, are thyroid superfoods. They are naturally rich in iodine, a mineral that the thyroid gland uses to make hormones. These hormones are active in controlling growth, repairing damaged cells, and supporting a healthy metabolism.
Seaweed can be found in the majority of shops and supermarkets and can be served as a side dish, tossed in salads, or paired with sushi. And despite the name, it’s actually really tasty, especially when roasted.
Fish is a veteran when it comes to healthy eating. Rich in many vitamins and minerals, it’s recommended for so many health reasons. But, in regard to the thyroid, fish is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids and selenium, which works wonders to decrease inflammation.
Baked fish is best when thinking about the thyroid. Whether you choose baked cod, salmon, sea bass, or haddock, you’ll get a healthy dose of the nutrients you need.
Nuts are great for looking after the thyroid, specifically almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds, and brazil nuts. Almonds are especially beneficial as not only do they have good amounts of selenium, the thyroid-healthy nutrient, but they also have large amounts of magnesium. According to a study found in theMetabolism Journal, magnesium is an essential vitamin for maintaining thyroid health.
Brazil nuts also have extra minerals alongside selenium that make them great for the thyroid. Rich in iron, they can support brain function, reduce inflammation, and improve heart health and thyroid function.
Fresh eggs, especially pastured, are incredibly beneficial to the thyroid. They are rich in iodine and selenium and are a great source of protein and tyrosine, an amino acid used by cells to synthesize protein. One egg contains 15% of iodine and 20% of selenium, the recommended daily amount for a healthy, functioning thyroid.
For the best results for your overall health, eat the whole egg, not just the whites, because the yolk holds the most nutrients.
Ice cream lovers, you’ll be glad to know that dairy is on this list. Other products to note are milk and yogurts, as they contain iodine. For the best, most healthy results, try low-fat frozen yogurt. Your thyroid will absorb a sufficient amount of iodineand prevent glands from becoming enlarged.
5 Foods to Avoid
For optimum thyroid health, you should not only seek out the above five foods but avoids several others as well. Try and cut down or avoid these five products:
Foods containing soy, including tofu, miso, and Edamame, have all been linked to having potential negative side effects on the thyroid due to certain compounds in soy, like isoflavones. If a person consumes too much soy, it could increase their risk of developing hyperthyroidism.
So, the next time you’re at Starbucks, we recommend choosing an alternative milk like almond, coconut, or oat instead.
2. Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables, like cabbage, sprouts, kale, cauliflower, and broccoli, are naturally good for the body and contain masses of fiber and other nutrients.
However, too many of these vegetables could interfere with thyroid hormone production for people with an iodine deficiency. This is because, when digested, these veggies can potentially block the thyroid’s ability to make use of iodine, which is essential for effective thyroid function.
So, if you do have this deficiency, it’s recommended you cut down on the number of cruciferous vegetables you consume.
Gluten is the general name for the proteins found in wheat, rye, barley, and triticale (and in foods like pasta and bread.) For people who suffer from hyperthyroidism, it can be a good idea to cut down on gluten intake.
Those diagnosed with celiac disease should also steer away from gluten, as it can irritate the small intestine. This can then cause the absorption of the thyroid hormone replacement medication to become compromised.
4. Fatty, Fried Foods
Foods containing unhealthy fats, like butter and meat, can disrupt the body’s ability to absorb medicines for thyroid hormone replacement. They can also interfere with the body’s actual ability to produce the thyroid hormone too.
To avoid this, many healthcare professionals recommend cutting out fried foods altogether and reducing the fat intake of fats found in foods like margarine, butter, mayonnaise, and fatty cuts of meat.
5. Sugary Foods
Hyperthyroidism happens when the body’s metabolism slows right down. And when this occurs, it makes it a lot easier to gain weight if you don’t watch what you eat.
To avoid developing hyperthyroidism, nutritionists and medical experts recommend cutting out foods with excess amounts of sugar because they are full of calories with no nutrients. This means eliminating sugary treats like cakes, donuts, sweets, etc., from your diet is essential.
Look After Your Health
Your health is important, which is why it is essential to understand what you are putting into your body. By being aware of the superfoods that are good for your thyroid, you’ll be able to ensure the rest of your insides are looked after, too.