The Holistic Approach to Hypothyroidism

In the USA, 9 million people suffer from hypothyroidism. Of these people, 90% of them are women.

Hypothyroidism is the result of an inactive thyroid gland; one that is under-producing the hormone needed to have a balanced thyroid.

Hypothyroidism generally begins gradually. A person may begin to feel a little run down and fatigued, weight gain, dry skin, hoarse voice, irritability, memory loss, and muscle cramping are a few of the physical symptoms. People who have hypothyroid also have many mental symptoms such as depression, mood swings, irritability, anxiety, and confusion. For women with low thyroid, menstrual periods become heavier, breasts become tender, and chances of ovarian cysts increase. The thyroid gland is the body's internal thermostat. It adjusts the temperature by secreting a hormone called thyroxine that controls how promptly the body burns calories and uses energy.

Many things including your diet can cause hypothyroidism. Many people are finding help with natural approaches such as diet, minerals, aromatherapy, and change of lifestyle. In addition, by using a more natural approach to treating (or preventing) this often misdiagnosed disorder, there is little chance of harmful side effects.

What To Add To Your Diet and Lifestyle

COCONUT OIL is known to support and stimulate the functioning of the thyroid gland. Coconut oil consists of lauric acid which possesses thyroid stimulating properties. It increases metabolism and energy levels. Extra virgin coconut oil is more effective and stable, compared to non virgin coconut oil.
An important function of coconut oil is that it supports mitochondrial respiration, increasing energy production that has been blocked by the unsaturated fatty acids. Since the polyunsaturated fatty acids inhibit thyroid function at many levels, coconut oil can promote thyroid function simply by reducing those toxic effects. It allows normal mitochondrial oxidative metabolism, without producing the toxic lipid peroxidation that is promoted by unsaturated fats. See more about coconut oil and thyroid health here.

NETTLE in supplemental, tea or fresh form daily. Nettle has been used for many years to help regulate Thyroid Function and has been shown to help with Hypothyroidism. It is high in iodine.

GOJI BERRIES are high in antioxidants and help to regulate the body. It's been shown in a recent study the Goji Berries even help to regulate the Thyroid Gland, making it useful for those with Hypothyroidism.

GENTIAN is a plant that produces violets in Europe and North America. Gentian has been used for many years by Herbalists and Holistic doctors to help regulate thyroid function in patients with hypothyrodisim. It provides bitter principles known to normalize the functioning of the thyroid.

RADISHES have historically been used to treat thyroid problems and have been known to keep the levels of thyroid hormones balanced. Russian researchers claim that the chemical in radishes, raphanin, helps keep levels of thyroid hormones in balance. With enough raphanin circulating in the blood, the gland is less likely to overproduce or underproduce these hormones.

YOGA It is strongly believed that yoga has positive effects on the thyroid gland. A gentle form of exercise,
yoga postures involve stretching and compressing of the body. This along with the breathing exercise helps massage the endocrine organs and improve blood flow to these parts. The effects of yoga are also long lasting as they are experienced right at the cellular level, improving overall health. Specific yoga poses for thyroidism.

B VITAMINS have been shown highly effect in treating hypothyroidism. If you have this illness you must get sufficient B vitamins throughout the day. To do this, you can take brewer's yeast which is extremely high in B vitamins. Other great sources are eggs lentils, tempeh and whole grains. B vitamins are found in all whole, unprocessed foods.

L-TYROSINE is a non-essential amino acid. It is extremely important in the treatment of hypothyroidism. Many people suffering from hypothyroidism do not respond to iodine supplements. They are lacking tyrosine, which helps iodine produce thyroid hormones. Iodine as a supplement is useless without the help of tyrosine. Food sources of L-Tyrosine are oats, avocados, spinach, pumpkin seeds, seaweed, spirulina, and sesame seeds.

ASHWAGANDHA has traditionally been used in Ayurvedic medicine to support the thyroid gland. Studies show that it enhances thyroid function and produces a significant increase in T4 thyroid hormone.

COLEUS FORESKOHLII has been proven to help hypothyroidism. It stimulates the thyroid gland and increase production of the thyroid hormone. It helps to relieve the symptoms of hypothyroidism. By activating an enzyme, Forskolin is also thought to specifically increase thyroid function. This enzyme causes levels of cyclic AMP (Adenosine Monophosphate), a key cell-regulating substance.

VITAMIN D several articles published over 20 years ago showed that patients with hypothyroidism have low levels of Vitamin D, which may lead to some of the bone problems related to hypothyroidism. People with hypothyroidism may have low levels of Vitamin D due to poor absorption of Vitamin D from the intestine or the body may not activate the Vitamin D properly.

Vitamin D and thyroid hormones bind to similar receptors called steroid hormone receptors. A different gene in the Vitamin D receptor has shown to predispose people to autoimmune thyroid disease such as Graves' disease and Hashimoto's thyroiditis. Proper Vitamin D levels are essential for your health especially if you have thyroid problems.

Other Extremely Helpful Foods, Nutrients and Herbs: Cinnamon, Turmeric, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Omega 3's, Celtic sea salt instead of table salt, Ginger, Milk Thistle, Prunes, Selenium, Eggs, Magnesium, Calcium, Spring water.
What To Avoid or Limit

GOITROGENIC FOODS gluten, canola oil, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, turnip, broccoli, brussel sprouts, radishes, kale, millet and soy, peaches, pear, peanuts. These foods make it more difficult for the thyroid gland to produce it's hormones especially if eaten raw. Read this for the good news about these foods for people with hypothyroidism.

FLUORIDE According to the US National Research Council, "several lines of information indicate an effect of fluoride exposure on thyroid function."
Fluoride's potential to impair thyroid function is perhaps best illustrated by the fact that up until the 1970s European doctors used fluoride as a thyroid-suppressing medication for patients with HYPER-thyroidism (over-active thyroid). Fluoride was utilized because it was found to be effective at reducing the activity of the thyroid gland even at doses as low as 2 mg/day.
Today, many people living in fluoridated communities are ingesting doses of fluoride (1.6-6.6 mg/day) that fall within the range of doses (2 to 10 mg/day) once used by doctors to reduce thyroid activity in hyperthyroid patients. There is concern that current fluoride exposures may be playing a role in the widespread incidence of hypothyroidism in the U.S.
Avoid water with fluoride and any processed foods made with tap water.

MERCURY FILLINGS studies have documented that mercury causes hypothyroidism, damage of thyroid RNA, autoimmune thyroiditis, and impairment of conversion of thyroid T4 hormone to the active T3 form. These studies and clinical experience indicate that mercury and toxic metal exposures appear to be the most common cause of hypothyroidism and the majority treated by metals detoxification recover or significantly improve. Thousands of tests at medical labs and many studies have documented that dental amalgam is the largest source of mercury in most adults that have several amalgam fillings, with exposures much above government health guidelines.
Other sources of mercury include fish, soil, fungicides, pesticides and cosmetics.

STRESS seems to decrease thyroid function, as well as affects the body in a negative way. So, it’s important to learn relaxation techniques and ways to deal with stress. Author and metaphysical teacher, Louise Hay, claims in her book, You Can Heal Your Life, hypothyroidism problems are related to self-imposed limitations and frustrated creativity. Meditation seems to help boost feelings of joy and serenity and decrease anxiety and stress.

Avoid Completely: White flour, white sugar, trans fats, sitting for long periods, chlorine in tap water.
Avoid Mostly: Honey, brown sugar, alcohol and caffeine.

Questionable Foods and Practices 

There are a few items which are controversial to use. Some say they help, others say they do not. Please research them.

Green tea
Kelp/iodine supplements
Aerobic exercise


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