Many people have an underactive thyroid and don't even know it. The symptoms can be sublte and different for everyone. Disorders of the thyroid can be broken into two categories. Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) and hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid). Hypothyroid is the most common, by a long stretch, so we will confine our discussion to this condition.
Hypothyroidism occurs when your thyroid does not make enough thyroid hormone. Your thyroid is your body's gas pedal and it controls metabolism. If it is underactive, your body is sluggish and you will see symptoms such as weight gain, fatigue, and depression. Most cases of hypothyroid are actually caused by an autoimmune disease called Hashimoto's thyroiditis. One of the primary sources of this disorder is when you are eating certain foods that create inflammation in the body and in the gut and digestive system. Over time, when you continually eat foods that are harmful, your immune system gets confused and begins attacking your thyroid.
The #1 worst food for your thyroid is gluten. Gluten is a protein found in wheat and grains. You have to completely take gluten out of your diet to begin to heal your thyroid. Without a healthy thyroid, weight loss is nearly impossible.
Using symptoms as a way of identifying your imbalances is often more accurate than typical hormone testing procedures because hormone levels fluctuate all day long. This creates inaccuracy. Many times our patients have had testing of their thyroid, adrenal, or other hormone levels and have been told that they are "normal" while our hormone management assessment showed that their hormone levels were anything-but-optimal. If you have more than 5 symptoms in this list, you very likely have an underactive thyroid.
Do you have more than 5 of these signs and symptoms of an underactive thyroid??
hair loss, including the outer third of your eyebrows and/or eyelashes
dry brittle hair and nails
easy weight gain
a sensitivity to cold
low sex drive
taking antidepressants that don't seem to work
fluid retention or swollen ankles
10 Natural Solutions for a Healthy Thyroid
Eliminate harmful, inflammatory, hormone dysregulating foods: Eliminate gluten, dairy, sugar, processed foods, and artificial sweeteners. Gluten creates inflammation and further leads to unhealthy thyroid and adrenal glands. The thyroid and adrenal are so intricately connected that many of those struggling with thyroid issues have adrenal stress and don't realize it.
Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol: Caffeine and alcohol cause cortisol to shoot up which tires out the adrenals and exacerbates thyroid and adrenal issues. They can also alter estrogen to unhealthy levels. I know this is a tough one…at least try it for 30 days.
Increase Healthy Fats: Healthy fats are critical for proper hormone balance and are often the missing link for finding balance. Enjoy more coconut oil, olive oil, avocados, nuts and seeds (almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts, flaxseeds, chia seeds), grass fed beef, wild caught salmon, and eggs.
Consume Foods Rich in Selenium and Iodine: Selenium and iodine are powerful antioxidants and help balance thyroid hormones and benefits the adrenal glands. Add brazil nuts (4-5 per day), yellow fin tuna, grass fed beef, eggs, spinach, mushrooms, sunflower seeds, bananas, and sea vegetables (seaweed, kelp, nori) to your diet.
Consider Supplementing with a Probiotic: According to research, many people with autoimmune disorders have a condition called "leaky gut". This intestinal permeability can be prevented by eliminating inflammatory foods like gluten and adding a probiotic supplement. I believe the single most important thing people can do to improve their health is to heal their gut. You may be seeing a lot more about the power and benefits of probiotics. Probiotics maintain the proper balance of bacteria in your digestive system. An unhealthy gut can prevent healing throughout the body and can lead to thyroid issues and other hormone imbalances. You can't have balanced hormones without a healthy gut. The best way to get probiotics is with fermented foods like kefir, sauerkraut, kombucha, fermented vegetables, and apple cider vinegar. However, if you don't eat fermented foods, a good quality probiotic is the best solution.
Use Essential Oils: Essential oils have enhanced lives for thousands of years with their powerful medicinal properties. Essential oils have plant based intelligence that seeks imbalances in the body to support health and balance hormones. I have combined 3 proprietary essential oil blends for hormone management. Thyroid Solution, Adrenal Reset, and Hormone Balance (menopause support, hot flashes). Each of these combinations are crafted to bring balance and support to thyroid, cortisol, and estrogen levels.
Try Ashwaghanda: Ashwaghanda is an adaptogenic herb and is shown to support the thyroid and adrenal glands. Adaptogens are a unique class of healing plants. Ashwaghanda aids in balancing cortisol levels and improving thyroid function. It is popular in Ayurvedic medicine and has been shown to increase the production of T3 and T4 thyroid hormones. Adaptogenic herbs work with your body to bring you back in to balance whether your levels are high or low. Ashwagandha is able to help those with hypo or hyperthyroid and can also balance high or low levels of cortisol. I recommend supplementing with 500mg 1-2x daily. This is the brand I recommend.
Maca Root: Maca root is also an adaptogenic herb that supports a healthy and comfortable transition through pre-menopause and menopause. It aids with the symptoms associated with low estrogen levels such as hot flashes, night sweats, and low libido. I recommend Maca Root for thyroid support because many women do not know that when our reproductive hormones drop during menopause, it triggers a thyroid slow down that can contribute further to the fatigue, weight gain, and depression during menopause. Maca is also shown to boost iodine levels.
Drink Plenty of Water: You should try to consume a ½ ounce of water per pound of body weight. If you weigh 150 lbs., you need at least 75 ounces of water per day.
Manage Stress and Get Good Quality Sleep: We all need 7-8 hours of sleep per night for proper health and hormone balance. Try our Sleep Assist with Cannabis Essential Oil Blend or our CBD oil Hemp Extract for a more restful, restorative sleep.
About Dr. Angela...
Dr. Angela is a wellness physician specializing in women's health, advanced nutrition, hormone management, and essential oils. Through 20 years of private practice, I have become very passionate about empowering others to transform their lives through natural health and wellness.