Your thyroid gland is an organ located at the base of your neck which forms part of the endocrine system. This gland is known as the master switch because it is essential for regulating important bodily functions such as your heart rate, metabolism, and body temperature just to name a few. When your thyroid is not functioning properly, everything in the body slows down which results in weight gain or weight loss, fatigue, hair loss, dry skin and even depression which makes it so important to find the best thyroid clinic to help identify any imbalances.. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and a well-balanced diet is essential for keeping this organ healthy and functioning properly. Here are a few tips on how to look after your thyroid gland to stay healthy:
#1 Consider Supplements
There are a variety of health supplements designed specifically for thyroid health. Be sure to look out for products that contain essential ingredients such as kelp, selenium, magnesium, and manganese. These are all ingredients in the thyroid supplements which help to prevent tissue damage, regulate metabolism and body temperature. Choosing the best supplement is of the utmost importance.
#2 Stay Away From Gluten
For those of you who are not allergic to gluten, it is important to know that avoiding gluten if you have an autoimmune thyroid disorder can save you and look after your thyroid gland to prevent a lot of trouble. There are strong links that suggest that thyroid disorders are linked to a gluten intolerance and while you may not be experiencing any side effects common with an allergy, there is something going on deeper in the body. Since the protein found in gluten has the same molecular structure as the thyroid, the body often mistakes the thyroid for gluten and starts to attack it. It is best to opt for a gluten-free diet to avoid further damage to your thyroid.
#3 BPA Free
Bottled water? How harmful can that be? Well, recent discoveries have shown the vast dangers of BPA or Bisphenol A, an industrial chemical that has been made to manufacture most plastic and resin products. Studies have shown that BPA is an endocrine disruptor and can have an effect on hormone levels and thyroid function which could lead to an autoimmune thyroid disorder. Regulations regarding BPA have been tighter in recent years and many manufacturers and food brands have started using BPA free materials such as glass. Always look out for BPA free labels and opt for those brands instead.
#4 Colorful Fruits and Veggies
Start including a variety of different colored fruits and veggies in your diet. Strawberries, blueberries, bell peppers and leafy greens are all a great way to up your antioxidant intake. Antioxidants are important to look after your thyroid gland because they are filled with essential minerals and vitamins, they also protect the cells from damage caused by harmful free radicals.
#5 Low Calories
Crash diets and fast days affect your thyroid because it causes a spike in cortisol, a steroid hormone induced by stress because it is under the impression that there is not enough food available. By lowering your calorie intake, your body signals the thyroid that you are experiencing hunger, the thyroid acts quickly by producing a hormone called RT3 which slows down your metabolism. The liver also acts quickly by converting the essential thyroid hormones your body relies on into metabolic waste in order to conserve energy.
#6 Eat More Kelp
Kelp is a sea vegetable which is rich in iodine. It is important to get a sufficient intake of iodine because it improves the function of the thyroid gland. Iodine also attaches to an amino acid called tyrosine which helps to produce thyroxine, the main hormone produced by the thyroid which is responsible for regulating the metabolism.
#7 Know Your Numbers
It is very important to get regular blood tests because you may have thyroid antibodies present without any of the symptoms or warning signs. Thyroid antibodies are prevalent in Hashimoto thyroiditis. These antibodies attack the thyroid gland which causes it to form nodules or to become enlarged. With regular checkups, endocrinologists are able to catch these antibodies early on and look after your thyroid gland possibly preserving its proper function.
#8 Brazil Nuts
Brazil nuts are rich in fiber and contain selenium, a chemical element that is crucial for a healthy thyroid and metabolism. Selenium is stored in the thyroid gland and assists in breaking down enzymes of the hormones secreted by the thyroid making them readily available for the body to use them. Without breaking down these hormones, the body is unable to use them efficiently and these hormones are turned into metabolic waste instead. By just eating 1 brazil nut a day, your body is getting almost 100% of its daily needs.