Q:

What are the best foods to include in a diet for hypothyroidism?

A:

Quick Answer

There is no scientific documentation that eating specific foods improves hypothyroidism, according to Mayo Clinic. However, prescribed thyroid hormone replacement should be taken according to a doctor's recommendations. This typically means on an empty stomach.

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The absorption of replacement thyroid hormone is reduced by too much fiber in the diet, Mayo Clinic warns. Specific foods, such as walnuts, soybean flour and cottonseed meal, negatively affect intake of thyroid medication. Iron and calcium supplements, antacids with aluminum or magnesium, certain ulcer medicines and some cholesterol-lowering drugs also cause the same problem. Several hours should elapse between ingesting these items and taking the synthetic hormone.

Hypothyroidism, or under-active thyroid, is the result of the thyroid gland producing an insufficient amount of thyroid hormone, explains MedlinePlus. The condition is commonly caused by thyroiditis, which is an inflammation of the thyroid. Hypothyroidism also sometimes results from an immune system assault on the thyroid, pregnancy, or a viral or respiratory infection.

Early symptoms of hypothyroidism include depression, constipation, sensitivity to cold, fatigue, menstrual irregularities, dry skin, weight gain, and brittle hair and nails, MedlinePlus states. Long-term effects of the condition are decreased abilities to taste and smell, a hoarse voice, slowed speech, skin thickening, eyebrow thinning, and swelling in the face, hands and feet

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