Hyperthyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland of our body is overactive and produces excessive amounts of thyroid hormone which is extremely essential for various metabolic functions in our body. Apart from this, the thyroid hormone is also necessary to maintain normal heartbeat, body temperature and blood pressure. In hyperthyroidism, the basic metabolic rate of the body increases thus leading to fatigue to weight loss as its main symptom. Apart from these symptoms anxiety, nervousness, drying of skin, insomnia and increased heart rate are also quite often noticed in hyperthyroidism. Some people may also develop goiter.
Hyperthyroidism does require some medications to control the excessive release of thyroid hormones, however a close watch at the diet will definitely help.
Here’s the list of foods to be included:
1. Cereals brown rice, barley, quinoa, oats, etc as they bypass disrupting the hormone levels in the body.
2. Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli and cabbage, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, kale, turnips, and pak choi are goitrogenic and can interfere with the production of thyroid hormone, particularly people who have an iodine deficiency goiter. Cooking destroys their goitrogenic compounds so cook them minimal or have them raw.
3. Include other goitrogenic foods like spinach, peaches, pears, peanuts, sweet potatoes and mustard greens.
4. Include more low fat dairy products as untreated hyperthyroidism leads to weakening of bones and may osteoporosis. Low fat milk, curds and paneer are the best bet. But avoid dairy if you find yourself lactose intolerant.
5. Non – iodized salt
6. Have antioxidant rich fruits and vegetables strawberries, oranges, sweet lime, capsicum, papaya, carrots, tomatoes etc. as they are antioxidant rich which build your immune system which otherwise takes a setback due to hormonal imbalance. They help to build the immune system and stabilize the digestive process, which goes off track due to increased metabolism in hyperthyroid patients. Vitamin C increases the levels of antioxidants and helps to regulate the thyroid gland.
7. Almonds, peanuts, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, and pine nuts as they are good source of zinc and omega 3 fatty acids. Zinc gets lost in hyperthyroidism and it’s necessary for cell growth and breakdown of carbohydrates. Low intake of omega 3 fatty acid can lead to hormone imbalance.
8. Include all beans, dals and pulses including soya to make up for the excess weight loss.
Certain foods to be avoided are:
1. Refined flours like plain flour, all purpose flour and white bread.
2. Gluten rich foods like wheat, semolina rye and bulgur wheat if you have gluten sensitivity.
3. Iodine rich sea weeds and iodized salt. 4. Refined sugar and ready to eat foods jams, jellies, cookies, pastries etc.
5. Salt laden ready to eat products like chips, bread, French firs, burgers, pizzas, bread sticks etc.
6. Alcohol, soft drinks, tea, coffee and artificial sweeteners. These intensify the thyroid hormone.
7. Fried foods.
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