You’ve been diagnosed with a thyroid problem. Whether your thyroid is underactive or overactive, it’s going to cause a problem for your dieting efforts. Most people are diagnosed with an underactive thyroid, which means your metabolism will slow down. Weight gain is much more likely—and you likely got check for a thyroid problem because of past unexpected weight gain.
Having a thyroid problem doesn’t mean you have to put up with being overweight. These 12 diet tips are effective and mostly for those with an underactive thyroid. Chances are if you have an overactive one that you’ll find it harder to keep weight on until you get a balance in your medication.
When you are losing weight, you want to make sure it’s healthy. It’s essential that you put your energy and nutrition levels first, which is what these 12 diet tips for individuals with thyroid problems will offer.
Get Your Medication Balanced for Optimum Results
When you’re first diagnosed with a thyroid problem, your doctor will need to assess just how bad the problem is. This isn’t as simple as doing a test and getting some readings. Your doctor will need to do it through trial and error with your medication.
There are high chances that your doctor will start off with a small amount of medication. This could mean that you still have a slower metabolism and will find it harder to lose weight. Don’t worry too much about your diet and weight loss right now. Focus on eating healthily while your doctor gets your medication just right.
Once your medication is right, you will find it easier to lose weight. You’ll find that your weight loss results are very much like a normal, healthy person. The medication boosts your metabolism to a healthy rate.
If you find that a diet that is usually successful stops being good for you, then you’ll need to go back to your doctor to make sure your medication is at the right level again.
Get More Selenium into Your Diet
One of the side effects of hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid) is low energy levels. Remember that your thyroid controls your metabolism. If your metabolic rate drops then so do your energy levels.
Selenium is a powerful nutrient to boost your metabolism and your energy levels. It’s also a nutrient that we tend to be deficient in, even without a thyroid issue! Selenium helps to turn your thyroid function on while protecting the thyroid gland from inflammatory chemicals released.
You actually don’t need that much selenium for a good acting thyroid—or improved thyroid in your case. Just 80mg on a daily basis will help to protect against the autoimmune condition and remove the antibodies from the system. You can get that whole amount in one lonely Brazil nut!
Oh, and Brazil nuts aren’t bad for your diet. They’re full of healthy fats and proteins, helping you feel full without too many extra calories. They’re full of L-arginine, which is a belly fat blasting amino acid!
You can get selenium from other nuts, too. It is available in some seeds, but you’ll need to eat more to get the amount necessary to boost your thyroid function.
Get More Poultry in Your Diet
Poultry is one of those meats that is good for you. It’s time to stay away from the red meats and opt for skinless chicken, turkey, duck, and other delicious birds. While red meats can offer some benefits to the thyroid, they don’t offer all the benefits to your waistline. You want to work on both, right?
The benefit of poultry is in the fatless protein. It’s the amino acids dopamine and tyrosine in the protein that helps to boost your thyroid function. The tyrosine builds up your thyroid hormone, while the dopamine manages your weight. Scientists have actually found that a diet lacking in tyrosine can lead to an underactive thyroid. It is possible to reverse some of the damage!
You’ll get cravings when you have an underactive thyroid. Don’t worry about them, because the dopamine will control them. You’ll feel fuller and satisfied so you won’t want to eat the quick energy boosting treats. That protein from the chicken will fuel your body for the next few hours.
If you’re worried about getting this amino acid on a vegan or vegetarian diet, there’s no need to turn to supplements. Leafy greens are full of the nutrient, along with vitamin B12. Most people with thyroid problems will suffer vitamin B12 deficiencies, so you want to boost that nutrient where possible.
Try Out Some Yoghurt on a Morning
Yogurt is one of those foods that is perfect for all types of dietary problems. When it comes to an underactive thyroid, the problem is in the vitamin D. There are chances that you’re not getting enough vitamin D when you have thyroid issues because your body can’t metabolize it properly. If you’re not getting enough vitamin D, your body won’t be able to absorb calcium from food, so your bones are at risk.
That’s not the only reason you want to get yogurt. It’s also full of good bacteria. Your body will create bad bacteria in the gut, leading to digestive complications and pain. When you overpower the bad with the good bacteria, you’ll find your whole system is in the balance.
By not suffering from digestive issues, you will suffer fewer cravings. You’ll also find your diet supports your body, meaning you want to get more of the good stuff. Your thyroid problem will cause an imbalance and create a breeding ground for bad bacteria, so you need to help your system by adding the good back in.
Watch out for sugary yogurts. Opt for natural Greek yogurt and add some fruit in for natural sweetness.
Boost Your Metabolism with Green Tea
Did you know that green tea is good for boosting your metabolism? It’s often touted as a miracle cure for weight loss.
Well, I can’t agree with the miracle cure, but I can agree with the metabolic boost that you’ll get. This is possible with all caffeinated drinks, but green tea is the better of the lot.
You see, caffeine boosts your energy levels, forcing your metabolism to burn off more. When it comes to green tea, you also get a boost of antioxidants called catechins. These antioxidants pull the fat from the fat cells so your energy can use it as energy. You’re physically burning the fat in your body, without too much extra help from your metabolism! It doesn’t matter how bad your thyroid function is.
This is possibly why green tea is touted as a miracle cure. Really, it only works effectively if you have a healthy and balanced diet. You will still need to create a calorie deficit actually to lose weight!
Try Out Red Tea Instead
When you get fed up of drinking green tea, you can turn to red tea instead. This is also known as red bush tea or rooibos tea. It’s created from the red bush plant in South Africa and is an alternative for those who want something to drink on a daily basis.
The health benefits are within the astaxanthin, a flavonoid that helps to slow down the creation of new fat cells. The fat is used by the liver more effectively since it doesn’t have the chance to stick around and build. You can slow down the process of new fat cell creation by 22%, according to some research.
There is also a natural sweetness to this tea, which will boost your weight loss efforts. There’s no need to add sugar, which is just empty calories in your drink. There’s no caffeine at all in the tea, so you get other health benefits—perfect for pregnant women with thyroid issues!
Try Adding More Garlic to Your Diet
Yet again, garlic is on the list of foods to eat. Studies show that not only is garlic food for fighting off bacteria and illnesses, but it also supports the metabolism of blood sugar. That means it will help to keep your blood sugar levels down, even when your diet isn’t the healthiest of options. This is especially beneficial if you get a lot of natural sugars through fruits.
Of course, the immunity benefits cannot be ignored. Garlic helps to fight off inflammation within the body, so you feel better within yourself. While it won’t cure your thyroid problem, it can help offer your immune system the support to fight it off and lessen the symptoms.
There are many other health benefits. Garlic will reduce your blood sugar and make your body an overall healthier place to be.
Get Healthy Fats from Avocado
Fats really do get an unfair reputation on the diet. Saturated fats are the ones that you want to avoid. Getting more healthier fats in your diet could help your metabolism. They certainly help your liver! You’ll burn more fat, giving you more energy despite a sluggish metabolism.
Avocados are rich in monounsaturated fats. They will help to boost that sluggish metabolism without the need of sugary or caffeinated treats that only give you an initial boost. They’re also full of antioxidants to help get the fat out of your fat cells, very much in the way of green tea.
And of course, we can’t forget about the fiber. Avocados are full of this digestive-supporting nutrient. You’ll find that inflammation isn’t as common. You won’t feel bloated, making you think about giving up on your diet.
There are other antioxidants that will help when your thyroid is sluggish. Your mitochondria won’t work properly without a fully functioning thyroid, which means your body can’t protect the cells effectively. Antioxidants help to neutralize the free radicals that will have a chance to grow and attack cells. You’ll lower the risk of cells and DNA being destroyed by the antioxidants.
Try Getting More Iron-Filled Foods
Remember that your energy levels are going to take a dip when you have thyroid problems. Your metabolism isn’t working effectively, and this is what burns your calories and turns them into energy to get through your day.
When you feel fatigued, you won’t feel like doing anything. You’ll suffer far more food cravings and are more likely to eat the foods that give you quick boosts. The problem is that they don’t give you the nutrients your body needs. They’re empty calories, where the sugar is used up quickly but puts you at risk of developing Type II diabetes.
Instead, you want to focus on foods that have plenty of iron. These include dark leafy greens and red meats (focus on the dark leafy greens the most!). You can eat some of them raw or choose to cook them all—the iron isn’t going to be completely destroyed.
Try starting your day with a green smoothie. You can add in some yogurt to create a creamy texture and get more health benefits to fight against the sluggish thyroid.
Avoid Gluten and Soy
Did you know that gluten and soy aren’t the best things for your body? Well, you probably know that about gluten but what about soy? This is usually consumed by vegans instead of animal milk. Well, it’s time to look at other milk alternatives.
Both soy and gluten have been found to have an effect on your thyroid gland and not in a good way. They inhibit the gland’s ability to create enzymes to boost your metabolism. If your thyroid is already negatively affected, eating anything with gluten or soy in them is going to make it worse.
There are mixed views on fermented soy. Some of the research has been positive. You can try this if you’d like but any soy protein should be avoided. Opt for coconut or almond milk if you want an alternative!
Boost Your Exercise Levels
You won’t initially feel like it, but exercise is good for you. It will actually help to boost your energy levels, as it forces your metabolism to speed up a little. You’ll support the release of the right chemicals in your body to support your thyroid problem.
There’s no need to join a gym or do hours of training. You’re not training for a marathon here! Start by parking further away from your work and walking in or take the stairs instead of the elevator. Think about playing an outdoor game with your kids or take up power walking with a close friend.
You want to do something that you enjoy. When you enjoy the exercise, you’ll find that you stick with it. You could also join a gym class if you’d like, as this will keep you accountable to someone.
Don’t Forget to Rest!
“You can sleep when you’re dead” is a popular saying used by those who think sleep is for the weak. What they don’t realize is that sleep is essential for the body. Some people work on just four hours of sleep, while others need eight. If you have an underactive thyroid, you may find that the whole eight hours are a must.
Don’t be afraid to take that time. The sleep will be a chance for your bodily functions to reset. Your brain gets a break from everyday activities, and the chemical levels improve. Weight loss is much easier for anyone when they’ve had a good night’s sleep.
With rest, you’ll find curbing your sugar cravings is easier. You’ll want to stick to a healthy and balanced diet and won’t find it as confusing or draining.
Give Your Body the Fuel It Needs
It’s time to focus on a healthier lifestyle. Your thyroid problems will make you tired and cause a few sugar cravings. It’s up to you to say no and focus on a diet that will help support your whole system.
Thyroid problems do not mean necessary weight gain. You can lose weight, but it may be a little harder. With the foods and drinks above you will support your liver function to help physically burn off the fat and give your body the total energy it needs. At the same time, you’ll be able to enjoy your time with your friends, without anyone realizing that you have a medical condition.
Your doctor will love for you to follow this healthy diet to combat your thyroid problem and lose weight.