How To Lose Weight With Hypothyroidism
Trying to lose weight but have been diagnosed with a thyroid disease like hypothyroidism. Don't worry, here are my 4 steps to losing weight naturally!
If you're trying to lose weight but have been diagnosed with a thyroid disease like hypothyroidism or Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis you're probably really frustrated and find that you're having a hard time losing weight. The cause of thyroid disease from a medical doctors perspective is said to be genetic having passed on from your mother's or father's side, however, let's explore the holistic point of view. In this free guide, I'll discuss how you can lose weight naturally with this condition and perhaps even reverse this illness.
Thyroid and Friends
Your thyroid is not a lone ranger (no body part is). It actually works closely together with your hypothalamus and pituitary glands. So your little fiesta goes like this! Your neurotransmitters, autonomic nervous system, hormones, immune system and more all talk to your hypothalamus to get the party started. Then based on the needs of your body your hypothalamus produces TRH or thyroid releasing hormone. This then triggers your pituitary gland to produce TSH or thyroid stimulating hormone. Which then stimulates your thyroid to make a hormone called T4 that gets converted through the liver to another hormone called T3. (wow what a party.)
I wrote all this to say that your thyroid disease may have nothing to do with your thyroid at all. Quite often, most thyroid problems are secondary, meaning, something other than your thyroid is causing your thyroid disease. Therefore you mustn't be in a hurry to try drugs or surgery but rather give your body a chance to heal naturally.
Thyroid and Weight Loss
The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped organ that is located at the base of your neck. It is largely responsible for your metabolism. Your metabolism is the sum total of chemical processes carried out by the body. Another definition I like to use is the speed at which our bodies burn through food.
Besides your metabolism, your thyroid gland produces hormones that regulate your body weight, muscle strength, digestion, bone maintenance, body temperature, brain function and cholesterol to name a few. It’s proper functioning depends on a diet adequate with plenty of vitamins, minerals and protein, not just iodine. A diet rich in fresh fruit, vegetables and healthy proteins, rich in iodine, selenium and tyrosine will produce adequate amounts of thyroid hormone if all else is well.
How The Thyroid Works
The thyroid gland uses iodine to make two main hormones T3 and T4. Twenty percent of your thyroid hormones are produced by your thyroid gland and the other 80% are produced by your liver and/or kidneys.
I would like to point out that if you have been abusive to your liver and/or kidneys by way of poor high sugar diets and excessive drinking you will make the production of thyroid hormones quite difficult.
In addition, if you have a diet that is high in estrogen or estrogen-mimicking substances the estrogen can prevent thyroid conversion as well. These can be foods like soy and soy products, meats loaded with estrogen hormones and fruits and vegetables treated with pesticides and herbicides.
Early Warning Signs
There are many things that can cause thyroid disorders. I've touched on a few already, we'll get to the big reveal in a bit. But I do want to point out that you don't just wake up one morning with a thyroid disorder. Your body gives you clues or warning signs that it's not doing well.
Just like you wouldn't drive your car if several warning lights are lit up on your dashboard; you shouldn't push your body either if it has several warning symptoms. Always pay attention to your body's warning signs! Below is a list of symptoms that can indicate early thyroid dysfunctions.
- Excess body fat all over your body and not in one particular area.
- Cravings for starchy foods.
- Hair loss or brittle hair.
- Eyebrows thin towards the end.
- Ridged nails.
- Frequently tired.
- Cold feet.
What Happens If You Do Nothing?
If you do not listen to your body and restore your thyroid gland back to healthy function, not only will it be next to impossible for you to lose weight but you can develop the following major thyroid diseases. I have listed them for you below:
- Goiter- Is an enlarged thyroid gland accompanied by hypo or hyperthyroidism.
- Hyperthyroidism- Is excessive hormone production in the thyroid gland.
- Hypothyroidism- Is insufficient hormone production in the thyroid gland.
- Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis- Is an autoimmune condition where the thyroid is inflamed.
- De Quervain’s Thyroiditis- Is an inflammation of the thyroid due to a viral infection.
- Thyroid Cancer- It can manifest as a lump on the thyroid that is usually painless.
Root Causes For Thyroid Disease
I know your doctor probably told you that your thyroid disease is genetic and you know what, he or she is right, because that's what they've been taught. Based on their training and school of thought, thyroid disease is genetic and there is nothing you can do about it. But let's entertain a different school of thought! One where your body is not the enemy, one where you're in control of your genetic expression! One where it's easy for you to lose weight!
Let's look at some possible root causes for Thyroid Disease from a holistic perspective and then see what we can do about it in terms of improving your situation and losing weight.
Thyroid Root Causes
There are a 5 major possible causes for thyroid disease:
- Not enough good nutrition to support conversion. As I stated earlier If your diet is not rich in fresh fruit, vegetables and healthy proteins. Foods rich in iodine, selenium and tyrosine you will not produce adequate amounts of thyroid hormone.
- A highly toxic or congested liver and gall bladder will make it difficult to produce thyroid hormone. If you have liver and gallbladder issues the body will not be able to convert T4 into T3 as this conversion process takes place through the liver and gallbladder.
- High levels of stress can shut down or impede bile production produced by the gallbladder. When this happens it can also interfere with the conversion process. In addition, high cortisol produced by your adrenal glands when under stress can inhibit TSH.
- Elevated estrogen in your body can block the thyroid from communicating well with the rest of the body (pituitary gland and the hypothalamus) therefore it will be unable to convert T4 into T3.
- If you have poor immunity and a poor digestive system where 70-80% of your immune system live you are more susceptible to an inflamed and dysfunctional thyroid gland when under extreme periods of stress. Stress of all forms is generally the trigger.
4 Steps To Losing Weight
Now that we've had a chance to look at all of the possible major root causes for thyroid disease we can now develop a strategy for you to lose weight with thyroid disease and get your health back. Let's break this down into four easy steps!
Weight Loss With Hypothyroidism
Consume a diet with plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables and healthy proteins. The foods you will want to consider will be healing for the liver, high in vitamins, minerals especially iodine and selenium. High iodine foods include strawberry, eggs, yogurt and sea vegetables like watercress, sea kelp, dulse, wakame, kombu and some fish. (fish tea/broth is excellent as well) Brazil nuts and fish will contain plenty of selenium. Tyrosine can be found in chicken and fish as well. Consume no grains and avoid gluten.
In combination with changing your diet above, go on a liver cleanse or juice fast to clean up and support the liver. Be sure to include plenty of cruciferous vegetables. This will also help to balance your hormones and regulate estrogen.
Do your best to remove or limit exposure to major stress in your life. Include stress management practices like walking, meditating and deep breathing exercises. You will also want to avoid any radiation like x-rays, avoid smoking and watch out for medication like Lithium Salts used to treat manic depressive bipolar disorder, Amiodarone used to treat cardiac arrhythmias and Interferon or Interleukin used to treat hepatitis and multiple sclerosis. All stressful to the body!
Consume probiotics like organic grass fed kifir and sauerkraut to strengthen your digestive system and immune system. Also, drink plenty of bone broth to heal and strengthen your gut and immunity. You can also supplement with Zinc to boost your immune system.
By taking a more proactive approach and not blaming this condition on genetics we are then empowered to seek solutions and take action. I'm sure if you implement the above 4 steps to lose weight with Thyroid Disease you will be very successful and it won't be long before you weigh less and quite possibly reverse all of your symptoms for good. Let me know how you do and if you need my support click here to schedule a talk!