The thyroid gland controls our metabolism and all our other organs and systems are indirectly dependent on this little butterfly-shaped gland that controls our hormones.
The thyroid gland produces hormones that regulate the body's metabolic rate and maintain the health of our heart, muscles, digestive system, brain and bone structure. Its correct functioning depends on a good supply of iodine from the diet i.e. food and supplements.
Hypothyroidism is a condition when the body doesn't produce enough thyroid hormones, which play a crucial role in growth, metabolism and healing. Thus, it can also be hard for people with an underactive thyroid to lose weight and bring on the additional struggle. In some cases, underlying thyroid issues can also be the root of ineffective fat loss and weight management.
And so, we spoke to Rohit Shelatkar, a fitness and nutrition expert and VP at Vitabiotics to understand what foods help in regulating thyroid-induced hormonal imbalances and here's what he suggested:
Protein is crucial for all hormone production, but eggs specifically contain selenium, iodine, vitamin A, and the B vitamin choline, which are all great for thyroid health. They are loaded with all nine essential amino acids, choline, and powerful antioxidants that help bring the thyroid under control.
One needs a good dose of healthy fats for optimal thyroid hormones, especially those rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. The healthy omega-3s, fibre, and other nutrients in avocados can also help to decrease inflammation in the body. They are also a good source of magnesium, potassium, vitamins C, E, K, and B-vitamins.
Blueberries are nutrient-dense and are loaded with fibre, vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese, and antioxidants. They also help to lower cholesterol levels in the body, bring blood pressure under control, help fight cancer and boost brain health. Additionally, berries have gut-friendly fibre that can help with weight loss. Berries also protect against hypothyroidism—an overactive thyroid condition that occurs when the thyroid gland produces too much of the hormone thyroxine and leads to fatigue and weight gain.
This white food is a great thyroid booster as it's a great source of iodine. The vitamin, immunity-boosting, and anti-inflammatory properties present in yoghurt protect the thyroid gland from damage. In addition to vitamin D, yoghurt is also a probiotic food that helps increase good bacteria in the gut that is usually thrown off by thyroid disturbances.
Sugar and high-carbs are enemies to weight loss. Therefore, if one wants to get its thyroid under check and lose weight in an optimum manner, try limiting or minimizing the number of sugar sources in your diet. High starchy carb foods, which again, can add sugar, will be detrimental for you. One should consider adding foods that do not spike insulin levels, such as foods that have a low-glycemic index.
Eating a healthy and balanced diet with an active lifestyle is important. Remember to include a good amount of exercise, reduce stress and get adequate sleep. All these put together will help in better management of the thyroid condition.