If You Have an Underactive Thyroid, Follow These Tips to Limit Goitrogen-Rich Foods – A Healthier Michigan

The thyroid is a very important gland that helps control the body’s hormones. If you have hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid), you can help thyroid function properly by limiting foods that are rich in goitrogen.Note that I did not say avoid, just that you should limit foods that have goitrogen, or sometimes simply cooking them can help break down the compound. Many foods that contain goitrogen are good for the body for different reasons, so it doesn’t mean they can’t be part of an underactive thyroid diet.Goitrogens are compounds naturally found in some foods that make it more difficult for the thyroid gland to create hormones. These chemicals can interfere with thyroid function in different ways:Either way, the end result is that the thyroid is not able to produce enough of the hormones it needs to regulate metabolism. You can see how this is important information for those who have hypothyroidism. With any thyroid disorder, an enlarged thyroid may also occur, causing a goiter, which is a swelling or enlargement of the thyroid gland. For others with a healthy thyroid, the body simply compensates and makes more of the hormones it needs for normal function.Ironically, many of the foods that contain goitrogen are really good for you. Even if you have hypothyroidism, you do not have to avoid these foods altogether, you just have to limit the amounts or be sure to cook them to help breakdown the goitrogen in these foods.Another way to boost thyroid function is to choose iodine-rich foods as a regular part of the diet. These include fish, seafood, kelp and seaweed. Goitrogen is known to impede iodine absorption, which is needed for normal thyroid function and to avoid goiters, so it’s important to include these foods.I suffer from hypothyroidism and I try to follow these rules for myself. You can do it, too.