Foods that Support Thyroid Function
(NaturalHealth365) Foods that keep you alive and well will contribute to keeping your thyroid functioning. The thyroid like all your organs and glands needs specific vitamins and minerals to carry out its role.
The thyroid gland is found just under the Adam’s apple. It produces the hormone thyroxin. The thyroid hormone is converted outside of the thyroid gland where it becomes activated, and stimulates trillions of cells, which your body depends on. The thyroid and adrenals are masters of the body’s functions, while at the same time sensitive to all stresses placed on the body. These stresses include both emotional and physical ones.
The thyroid is the thermostat of the body, regulates our metabolic rate and keeps our energy producing processes going. It takes part in protein synthesis, growth, temperature regulation, and oxygen consumption for our cells. For the rest of the body to function the thyroid needs to be working.
The most prevalent problem is low thyroid function. Both types of thyroid problems hyperactive and under-active are prevalent in at least 15 percent of the adult population. There is an increase in auto-immune disorders and thyroid disease often falls in that category. The list of symptoms especially for hypothyroidism is overwhelming. There isn’t a function that escapes the downward spiral.
These symptoms run the gamut from: depression, lethargic, chilled, weight management, chronic fatigue, bladder infections, insomnia, constipation, depression, IBS, and cognitive disorders, thinning hair, sensitivity to bright lights, chronic infections, and low libido. Did we miss anything? We probably did, because every function depends on the thyroid. Not everyone gets all these symptoms, and most of these present themselves with low thyroid output.
Thyroid Specific Nutrients
There is a deep seated belief, which is when the thyroid isn’t up to par; it needs more than whole food support. While this may be true you can only achieve total health by feeding your body what it needs.
You can choose a synthetic thyroid helper, but most drugs will not address your individual needs. When you have a thyroid imbalance, a full thyroid panel isn’t enough. What may be deficient are nutrients such as iodine, selenium and vitamin D.
Selenium is indispensable to the thyroid. What it does is regulate thyroid hormone synthesis and metabolism. It converts T4 into the more accessible form of thyroid hormone T3; and maintains the right amount of thyroid hormones. Iodine, and selenium are major players, but zinc, iron, and copper are also vital to thyroid function.
Iron deficiency is strongly linked to decreased thyroid efficiency. If you are both anemic and iodine-deficient you will have to get your iron levels up to resolve any thyroid imbalance.
Copper is needed in very small amounts by the thyroid so it can produce thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). Cooper is needed for oxidizing iodine to T4, when you are deficient in copper your rate of T4 production will slow down. Since T4 keeps your body’s cholesterol synthesis working, hypothyroidism puts you at risk for developing high cholesterol and heart problems.
Foods That Support Your Thyroid
The best place to get the nutrients, which support your thyroid, is from whole foods. Iodine is found in: sea vegetables such as kelp, dulse, hijiki, nori, arame, wakame, kombu and seafood. The seafood sources are clams, shrimp, haddock, oysters, salmon and sardines.
Selenium is found in: Brazil nuts, tuna, organ meats, halibut, beef, and sunflower seeds.
Zinc is found in oysters, sardines, beef, lamb, turkey, split peas, whole grains, pecans, almonds, and ginger.
Copper is found in beef, oysters, lobsters, shitake mushrooms, dark chocolate, crabmeat, tomato paste, barley, chickpeas and nuts.
Iron is found in clams, oysters, organ meats, pumpkin seeds, blackstrap molasses, lentils, and spinach.
A properly working thyroid is critically important to the way we look and feel. A good diet is an inside-out makeover. By harnessing the power of whole food, we will be supporting the thyroid gland with a holistic approach.
About the author Blanche has been a student of natural healing modalities for the last 25 years. She had the privilege of working with some of the greatest minds in Natural Healing including Naturopaths, Scientist, and Energy Healers. Having seen people miraculously heal from all kinds of dis-ease through non-invasive methods, her passion now is to help people become aware of what it takes to be healthy.