.Did you know 59 million Americans have a thyroid problem, but the majority doesn't even know it yet and are suffering in silence? Wow! ... The thyroid is a small, butterfly shaped gland also known as the master gland of the endocrine system located in front of the neck, over the windpipe below the Adam's apple where thyroid hormones are made. The thyroid gland affects almost every organ in the body and is essential for the growth and development in children and adults. When the thyroid goes haywire it could be an autoimmune attack, pregnancy, stress, nutritional deficiencies, or toxins in the environment.How Can I Improve My Thyroid Function?The thyroid's main function is to regulate metabolism which is your body's ability to break down the food you consume and convert it to energy. It regulates fats, carbohydrates, respiration, body temperature, brain development, cholesterol, nervous system, menstrual cycles, skin, and more.The thyroid gland produces two hormones which are called triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) . The function of these hormones is to increase your body's metabolic rate. When your thyroid is out of balance you may feel sluggish which may be due to an under-active thyroid also known as (Hypothyroidism). Hypothyroidism is when your thyroid hormone produces low levels of T3 and T4 hormones. In the case of when you're feeling amped-up, you may have an over-active thyroid also known as (Hyperthyroidism) which can cause your thyroid hormones T3 and T4 to increase.Symptoms of Hypothyroidism may include:
Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism may include:
Here are some nutritional ways you can optimize and keep your Thyroid healthy.Iodine:Iodine is an essential element ones needs for optimal thyroid function. Load up on iodine rich foods which include cod liver oil, seaweed, tuna, and coconut oil. How Can I Improve My Thyroid Function?Vitamin D:Vitamin D is important for bone loss. Foods that contain vitamin D include fatty fish, eggs, avocados, and there is no better way to get vitamin D but from the sunlight right in your own backyard.Selenium:Selenium had been shown to have profound effects on the immune system, cognitive function, fertility in both men and women, and mortality rate. Selenium rich foods include Brazil nuts, Omega-3 fatty acids, crab, and lobster.Vitamin B12:Vitamin B12 is vital for metabolism, the formation of red blood cells, and maintenance of the central nervous system. Food sources of B12 include sardines, salmon, organ meats such as liver, muscle meat, and dairy.Healthy Fats:Olive oil, coconut oil, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, and cashews are rich in fatty acids that can help protect the thyroid gland.Avoid Bromides:Bromides are a menace to your endocrine system and are present all round you. Bromides can be found in some over the counter medications, foods, and personal care products.Avoid Cruciferous Vegetables:Broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage just to name a few release a compound called goitrin and when it's broken down, goitrin can interfere with the synthesis of thyroid hormones and iodine metabolism.How Can I Improve My Thyroid Function?Avoid:Sugars, Pastas, Soy, and Gluten because it can put extra stress on your thyroid and overall body. Identifying and treating the underlying cause as to what is triggering your thyroid problems whether it's a hormonal imbalance, environmental toxins, nutritional deficiencies or undesired weight changes the importance of eating a balanced diet and adopting a healthy lifestyle is key to maintaining and keeping a healthy thyroid. If you have any questions or concerns give our office a call and schedule a Nutrition Evaluation. Dr. Gucciardo can help you achieve realistic goals and a diet that is safe, natural, and designed to work best for you.