Control Your Thyroid Naturally

Control Your Thyroid Naturally

Most people don’t give their thyroid much thought but if any knew what this unassuming gland was in charge of they may take notice. It is derived from the Greek words ‘thyreos’ which means shield and ‘eidos’ which means form and when it is out of balance a host of bodily compromises can take effect. This is because your thyroid is responsible for regulating the full spectrum of your system, making sure all is working together for optimal health. 

If your thyroid has been diagnosed as under or over performing, before you begin lifelong medication to manage its compromise, you may want to attempt to control your thyroid naturally.

Two Types

There are two types of thyroid imbalances.

Hypothyroidism (underactive) – Symptoms include: 

  • Fatigue
  • Weight gain
  • Neck enlargement
  • Constipation
  • Low heart rate
  • Heavy menstrual cycles
  • Inability to lose weight 

According to a study published in the Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism, 

“The prevalence of hypothyroidism was high, affecting approximately one in 10 adults in the study population. Female gender and older age were found to have significant association with hypothyroidism.”

Hyperthyroidism (overactive) – Symptoms include:

  • Weight loss
  • High blood pressure
  • Excessive sweating
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Shorter menstrual cycles
  • Nervousness
  • Trembling
  • Frequent bowel movements

The American Thyroid Association cites a public study that states,

“Patients with hyperthyroidism have increased risks of various cardiovascular problems, such as atrial fibrillation (an irregular heart rhythm), hypertension, coronary artery disease, stroke and heart failure.”

Natural Approaches

There are some natural approaches to rebalancing a compromised thyroid. Although there could always be mitigating circumstances such as trauma, disease, or a biological anomaly of the thyroid, if these are not a factor some natural remedies may help. 

Deficient in Iodine – Maintaining healthy iodine levels is paramount to thyroid health. This trace mineral is only needed in small amounts to maintain thyroid functioning. In 2007, according to the World Health Organization, it was reported that, “over 30% of the world’s population were iodine deficient.” Stick to iodine rich or iodine supporting foods such as:

  • Fish
  • Cranberries
  • Yogurt
  • Navy beans
  • Baked potatoes
  • Milk
  • Turkey breast
  • Boiled eggs
  • Bananas
  • Strawberries
  • Green beans
  • Cheddar cheese

Get Your Z&C – Zinc and copper combined makes for an optimal thyroid supplementation. These minerals are linked to supporting the thyroid on various levels. Foods dominant in zinc include:

  • Spinach
  • Beef
  • Shrimp
  • Kidney beans
  • Lima beans
  • Flaxseed
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Garlic
  • Egg yolks
  • Peanuts

King Selenium – Another important mineral that is found in abundance in the thyroid is selenium. It has shown to protect the thyroid from oxidative stress while regulating iodine at the same time. Selenium rich foods include:

  • Brazil nuts
  • Shitake/white button mushroom
  • Pinto/Lima beans
  • Brown rice
  • Seeds (sunflower, sesame, flax, chia)
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Spinach

Iron Clad – Iron supports thyroid hormone manufacturing. Increase iron dominant foods for natural thyroid support such as:

  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Nuts
  • Beef
  • Beans
  • Whole grains
  • Dark green leafy vegetables
  • Tofu
  • Black raisins

Keep Your Stress at Bay

Stress is the invisible factor that seems to be one of the major factors in contributing to disease. 

In the study, ‘The Immune System as a Regulator of Thyroid Hormone Activity’ by researchers from the Department of Diagnostic Sciences, Dental Branch, University of Texas Health Science Center, it was stated that,

“There is now, however, evidence linking cells of the immune system to the regulation of thyroid hormone activity in normal physiological conditions as well as during times of immunological stress.”

This result shows how stress directly contributes to the biological health of the thyroid and by reducing it could significantly improve functioning. Lowering stress may include meditation practices such as yoga or mindfulness; light exercise; good sleep patterns; and healthy eating.

Watch Your Fluoride

The mineral fluoride has been affiliated with healthy teeth for centuries, yet it may be taking its toll on your thyroid. A case controlled study published in Scientific Reports titled, ‘Impact of Drinking Water Fluoride on Human Thyroid Hormones’ concluded,

“It was found that fluoride has impacts on TSH, T3 [thyroid] hormones even in the standard concentration of less than 0.5 mg/L. Application of standard household water purification devices was recommended for hypothyroidism.”

Although many people do not drink fluoride supplemented tap water, it is important to beware of this mineral leeching into your system. Use a good water filtration unit and limit toothpastes with too much fluoride so your thyroid can take a break from yet another environmental toxin.

Keep the Sleep

Not enough people get adequate sleep and this is one of the easiest ways to control your thyroid naturally. It is reported that night workers have a 40% greater risk of developing hypothyroidism. Lack of sleep shows less production of thyroid-stimulating hormones (TSH) known as thyrotropin. According to an archived study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism it was found that,

“These results indicate that significant alteration of the daily TSH waveform can occur in response to absence of sleep and are compatible with the existence of an inhibitory effect in early nightly sleep on TSH release.”

Maintaining a good 6-8 hours of sleep per night will certainly support proper thyroid functioning resulting  in many systemic benefits as well.

Try to control your thyroid naturally at first and you may be able to get a handle on a condition that would have otherwise worsened. Always check with your doctor if you have any of the above chronic indicators and then discuss these natural options first. It may be the best holistic move you have ever tried.