Thyroid Health

  • When there is thyroid dysfunction, you must support the liver. The liver is responsible for conjugating thyroid hormones. The liver MUST be functioning optimally if your thyroid is underfunctioning.  Supplements to support the liver include probiotics, digestive enzymes and dandelion tea. 
  • IMPORTANT to LIMIT goitrogenic foods (diminish thyroid function) such as:  broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, mustard greens, peaches, flax, strawberries, pears, radishes, spinach, rutabaga, kohlrabi, turnips, peanuts, soy and millet.
    • NEVER eat the above foods raw.  Cooking them lightly will decrease the goitrogenic properties.
    • Limit to 2 cups of cooked goitrogenic foods per week.
  • Other goitrogens include: chlorine, fluoride, chemicals and some pesticides.
    • Chlorine, fluoride and iodine are chemically related.  Chlorine and fluoride block iodine receptors in the thyroid gland.
    • Avoid fluoride in your toothpaste and mouthwash. 
    • Drink filtered water to avoid chlorine.
    • Avoid swimming in chlorine; opt for salt water pools.
    • Buy a filter for your shower to prevent over exposure to chlorine while bathing/showering.
    • Eat organic whenever possible to avoid possible goitrogenic pesticides.
    • Avoid ALL processed and refined foods as they contain pesticides and chemicals that may be goitrogenic.
    • Reduce exposure to chemicals in household cleaners, commercial body products, aluminum and plastics.
  • Avoid soy products as this can also block the uptake of thyroid hormones.
  • Sulfa drugs and anti-histamines decrease thyroid function.
  • Vitamin D and calcium should NOT be taken within 4 hours of a synthetic thyroid hormone as they interfere with absorption of each other.   Synthetic thyroid hormones deplete calcium in the body so it is important to supplement calcium if you are taking a thyroid medication (Synthroid, Levothroid, Levoxyl, Unithroid, Armour Thyroid (dessicated), Cytomel).
  • Eliminate stimulants as these stress the entire endocrine system (ie: caffeine, sugar, nicotine, chemicals, additives, food dyes, etc.)
  • Increase consumption of iodine rich foods such as, sea salt, kelp, seaweed and seafood.
  • Eat selenium rich foods to help the conversion of T4 to T3; brazil nuts, garlic, fish, whole grains.
  • Supplement with fish oils (EPA & DHA), zinc, vitamin D, vitamins A, B, C & E.   All of these nutrients play a role in the synthesis of thyroid hormones.
  • Tyrosine is an amino acid which is a precursor to T4; eat foods rich in tyrosine such as, chicken, turkey, fish, eggs, seaweed and kidney beans  (iodine and tyrosine combine to make T4).
  • In psycho-spiritual terms, the health of the thyroid is linked to an “inability to speak up for oneself”.   Underactive thyroid is linked to suppression of feelings, giving up and feeling unheard so it's important to find ways to express yourself!