Low thyroid hormones can significantly impact the way you look and feel. Your body relies on your thyroid gland for thyroid hormone production that ultimately promotes a healthy metabolism, keeps energy stable throughout the day, supports a healthy heart, supports the digestive system, promotes healthy development of the brain, and maintains bones.
If your thyroid hormones are low, you’re likely to notice negative changes in the way your body works in its day-to-day. It’s important to be sure that your thyroid is healthy and your body is producing enough thyroid hormone.
If you have concerns about thyroid hormone levels, you should speak with a doctor. In the meantime, you can make some adjustments to your diet and lifestyle to support thyroid health.
What Is Hypothyroidism?
There are several types of hypothyroidism. The end result of every type of hypothyroidism is the thyroid’s decreased capacity to produce sufficient amounts of thyroid hormone. Hypothyroidism is often described as an underactive thyroid or a low thyroid.
Hypothyroidism can occur as a result of nodules on the thyroid, injury to the gland, a co-existing ailment that causes thyroid dysfunction, or an autoimmune disorder. Every form of hypothyroidism requires a specific type of treatment for adequate management of symptoms and either restoration of thyroid function or compensation of the hormones it should be producing.
If you have hypothyroidism, your doctor will advise you of the best form of treatment for your specific type of hypothyroidism. In severe cases, surgical removal of the thyroid may be necessary. Doctors prefer to avoid that option whenever possible, typically recommending thyroid hormone therapy to the risks associated with surgery.
Can You Increase Thyroid Hormone Naturally?
There are some natural remedies commonly utilized to try and promote thyroid health. These changes can support healthy thyroid function. If you have thyroid disease or if your thyroid hormone deficiency is significant, natural methods usually won’t sufficiently alleviate all of the symptoms of low thyroid hormone.
It’s important to temper your expectations. You may see some noticeable improvements to the way you feel with a prolonged commitment to healthy lifestyle changes, but these changes alone cannot tackle a thyroid condition.
It’s better to think of these methods as holistic ways to improve the results you’ll see with adequate treatment.
Do Thyroid Supplements Work?
You should be wary of herbal supplements touted as cure-alls for thyroid problems. They should never take the place of adequate thyroid hormone therapy, thyroid medication, or other forms of comprehensive medical treatment. Oftentimes, the research behind these supplements is mediocre at best.
Many of them have not been thoroughly evaluated, and none of them have been approved by the FDA as treatments or cures. Supplements can go to market as long as they aren’t harmful to ingest.
Herbal supplements can even sometimes cause issues for people who take other medications. Some herbal supplements can interact with medications, causing the body to absorb too much or too little of a drug.
One supplement you may benefit from for thyroid issues is a comprehensive multivitamin. Your body is prepared to utilize vitamins and minerals to support its overall health and support normal function. While it’s ideal to get these nutrients from your diet, supplements can be helpful to fill gaps.
Picky eaters, people who eat vegetarian or vegan diets, and people with food allergies often benefit from vitamin supplementation. Vitamins have nutraceutical benefits. Vitamin therapy can help your body to resolve deficiencies and perform efficiently. If you want to incorporate vitamins into your thyroid wellness plan, ask your doctor. Your doctor will likely approve.
How To Increase Thyroid Hormone Naturally
Although you cannot technically directly influence the production of thyroid hormone on your own, thyroid-healthy foods and positive lifestyle changes can help support your thyroids.
1. Eat Foods Rich in Essential Fats
Omega fats help your body to manage inflammation. Foods like nuts, fish, and soybeans are naturally high in omega fats. Unfortunately, many foods high in omega fats are common food allergens. If you can’t safely consume many foods high in omega fats, you can incorporate foods like hemp or flax seeds and oils into your diet.
2. Achieve Your Goals for Thyroid Health Nutrients
Selenium and iodine are both crucial for thyroid health — in fact, the American Thyroid Association attributes iodine deficiency as a leading cause for thyroid disorders.
Iodine-rich foods include seaweed and kelp. If you enjoy sushi, dried seaweed snacks, or seaweed salad, try to incorporate it into your normal meal or snack rotation. Since these foods are also light and healthy, they may have the added benefit of helping you reduce weight gain that occurred as a result of a slow thyroid. Iodine supplements can also be helpful.
Selenium is abundant in whole grain foods and every type of animal food. Beef, poultry, fish, pork, shellfish, eggs, and dairy products naturally contain significant amounts of selenium. If you’re eating a well-balanced diet, it should be easy to achieve your daily selenium needs through food alone.
3. Incorporate More Physical Activity into Your Day
Exercise, even if it’s low impact and light, helps your body to perform better. Exercise can reduce stress, boost mood, and encourage the body to function the way it’s designed to function. Physical activity is especially important if you’ve gained unwanted weight, which is common among people with hypothyroidism.
Even simple physical activity like yoga can play an important role in maintaining your overall health. If you’re looking to promote weight loss, strive for medium-intensity cardiovascular activity like brisk walking or indoor cycling. Do whatever makes you comfortable. If you choose a form of physical activity you genuinely enjoy, you’re more likely to remain committed to it.
See a Doctor If You Suspect You May Have Low Thyroid Hormone
Low thyroid hormone isn’t a condition you can self-assess, even if symptoms like low energy levels and changes in body temperature are alluding to it. You need to speak with a doctor about your concerns and undergo tests.
Low thyroid hormone is commonly diagnosed with simple blood tests. In some cases, medical imaging tests like an ultrasound may be necessary for your doctor to assess the condition and health of different parts of your endocrine system while checking for visible abnormalities.
Increasing Thyroid Hormones with Hormone Therapy
The only surefire way to increase thyroid hormone is through hormone therapy. Hormone therapy supplements the thyroid hormone produced by the body. Your body’s natural hormones work with these supplemental hormones to cumulatively provide you with sufficient amounts of the thyroid hormones your body needs to function properly.
Over time, the processes managed by your thyroid hormones will begin to function as expected. You may find that you have more energy and experience a broad boost in your overall wellness. It only takes a few weeks for these benefits to become apparent, and the benefits will remain for as long as you continue to use thyroid hormone therapy.
How To Get Started With Increasing Thyroid Hormones
Make lifestyle changes to improve the health of your thyroid. You can start those changes with your very next meal and continue them for the rest of your life. If you need a healthcare professional to begin the process of testing your thyroid, Elite HRT is here.
The hormone therapy doctors at Elite HRT can help you schedule tests in your local area. Upon receiving the results, we’ll be able to determine your candidacy for thyroid hormone replacement therapy. If necessary, we can prescribe an appropriate thyroid hormone therapy treatment plan for you.
All you need to do is contact our experienced hormone therapy doctors to get started.