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Greens, Kale & Thyroid Problems | Healthy Eating

The thyroid is a small gland at the base the neck that plays a big role in keeping many of your body’s metabolic processes running smoothly. A healthy thyroid produces hormones that regulate metabolism and allow most organs in the body to function normally. Like everything in your body, a healthy diet and a balance of certain nutrients help the thyroid to work properly.

Greens and Goitrogens

The thyroid requires iodine to make its hormones, and most people in the United States get enough of this mineral because it’s added to salt. However, certain foods, especially cruciferous vegetables, contain compounds called goitrogens, that can affect the thyroid’s absorption of iodine and interfere with thyroid hormone synthesis. Commonly consumed cruciferous vegetables include kale, cabbage, arugula, collard greens, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, broccoli and cauliflower.

Potential Risks

Because many greens contain goitrogens, you may need to avoid them if you have thyroid problems, especially hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid. According to the Linus Pauling Institute, cruciferous vegetables have been shown to cause hypothyroidism in animals, but results in humans are mixed. One study found that eating 5 ounces of cooked Brussels sprouts each day for four weeks had no adverse effects on thyroid function. However, a study published in “Cancer Causes & Control” in August 2010 showed that high consumption of cruciferous vegetables was associated with thyroid cancer among women with low iodine intake. Follow your doctor’s advice about which type of vegetables to eat if you have hypothyroidism.

Many Benefits

Leafy green and cruciferous vegetables are rich sources of fiber, vitamins, minerals and disease-fighting antioxidants, and nutritionists agree that they should be eaten regularly as part of a healthy diet. The American Institute for Cancer Research includes them on its list of foods that fight cancer and advises including them as part of a plant-based, cancer-fighting diet. Eating more greens and kale may also be beneficial for reducing disease-causing inflammation in the body. Researchers at Vanderbilt University Medical Center found that women who reported eating about 1 1/2 cups of cruciferous vegetables each day had substantially fewer inflammatory markers in their blood than those who ate the least amount.

Expert Advice

Eating a balanced diet, rich in a variety of fruits, vegetables and healthy fats is the best way to support thyroid health. Because the many health benefits associated with eating more greens and cruciferous vegetables far outweigh any risks, nutritionists recommend including them in your diet. Endocrinology experts agree that obsessive eating patterns — like consuming huge amounts of raw kale each day — is probably not a good idea for other reasons, but for most healthy people, it isn’t harmful to the thyroid. For anyone who is concerned, cooking greens and other cruciferous vegetables can minimize their goitrogenic effect, and balancing your diet with other vegetables will reduce any potential risks.

References

Writer Bio

Anne Danahy is a Boston-based RD/nutritionist who counsels individuals and groups, and writes about healthy eating for wellness and disease management. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Notre Dame, and a Master of Science in food and nutrition from Framingham State University in Massachusetts.

Kale | The Nutrition Source

Who knew a vegetable could be so cool? Although kale has early roots in Greek and Roman culture, it remained a relatively minor commercial crop in the U.S. until recent years. This leafy green reached celebrity status around 2012, appearing on menus of Michelin star restaurants and becoming the choice ingredient of millennial food bloggers. Kale displaced other greens in salads, soups, and pesto, and even showed up in the snack aisles as chips. Bon Appétit magazine named 2012 the year of kale, and on October 2, 2013, “National Kale Day” was launched in the U.S.

While curly and lacinato (also known as dinosaur or Tuscan) are generally the most common types of kale, this vegetable comes in a wide variety—each with its own unique colors, flavors, and textures: redbor is characterized by its deep purple, curly leaves; the blue-green and purple-red leaves of red Russian are known for being semi-sweet; the large green leaves of Siberian are particularly cold weather-hardy; and Chinese kale (Gai Lan), or “Chinese broccoli,” can be used in place of conventional broccoli in many dishes. Like broccoli, kale is part of the Brassica oleracea family, which also includes cabbage, cauliflower, bok choy, collard greens, and Brussels sprouts. Another more commonly recognized name for this vegetable family is Cruciferae or cruciferous, which refers to the shape of its sprouts that resemble a cross.

Source Of

Kale and Health

Cruciferous vegetables contain a plant chemical called glucosinolates, sulfur-containing compounds that are broken down into isothiocyanates and indole-3-carbinol after chewing, chopping, or cooking. In nature, glucosinolates act as a first-line defense for plants, protecting them from environmental and biological stresses (insects, fungi, drought conditions). These same substances are being researched for their proposed ability in humans to affect chronic conditions including certain types of cancer and heart disease. Laboratory studies have shown that isothiocyanates and indole-3-carbinol inhibit inflammatory processes, prevent the growth and spread of tumor cells, and protect healthy cells. [1]

Observational studies that follow groups of people over time have sometimes suggested a protective effect of cruciferous vegetables on various cancers and cardiovascular health, but findings have not been consistent. [2-5] There are several possible reasons for this discrepancy. The use of different study designs and methods, as well as the way in which the vegetables were cooked can change the bioavailability of isothiocyanates and their effects on the disease process. Genes may also play a role, as some people metabolize isothiocyanates more efficiently than others. [2] It is also possible that the amounts of cruciferous vegetables consumed by study populations have no important impact on disease risks. More research with larger and longer-term studies is needed.

Regardless, kale remains a highly nutritious food to include as part of a healthful dietary pattern. The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that adults eat a variety of vegetables as part of a healthy meal plan, and specifically at least 1½ cups of dark-green vegetables (including cruciferous) per week. [6]

People who are placed on blood thinners or anticoagulant medication to prevent blood clots are sometimes concerned about eating kale and other green leafy vegetables that are rich in vitamin K. Vitamin K has a unique action that assists in clotting blood, and can interfere with the effects of some blood thinners. However, people taking these medicines can safely eat these vegetables with a general precaution: eating a relatively consistent amount from day to day can allow one’s physician to adjust the dose of medication to balance the dietary intake of vitamin K, and should not interfere with the anticoagulant medication’s effectiveness. For those who are on blood thinners or anticoagulant medications, it would be wise to check with their physician and possibly a clinical dietitian.

Another concern has been the goitrogen content of kale and other cruciferous vegetables. Goitrogens are naturally occurring substances that can block iodine from entering the thyroid gland. Iodine is a trace mineral needed by the body to make thyroid hormones that promote normal metabolism. A deficiency of iodine can lead to a condition called goiter, or enlargement of the thyroid. Healthy persons who eat enough iodine and metabolize iodine normally will not be affected by dietary goitrogens. However, if one has an underactive thyroid called hypothyroidism and cannot produce enough thyroid hormone, eating excess goitrogens, especially in raw form, may further suppress thyroid activity and increase the risk of goiter. Those who have hypothyroidism specifically due to an iodine deficiency are at greatest risk. A simple solution is to cook cruciferous vegetables, which deactivates the enzyme responsible for causing the goitrogenic effect. [7] Including a wide variety of vegetables each week other than cruciferous will also protect against eating an excess amount of goitrogens.

Prepare 

  • Available throughout much of the year, Kale is even tolerant to frost and cold weather. Low temperatures can actually cause kale and other cruciferous vegetables to convert starch molecules into sugar, resulting in a sweeter, less bitter flavor.
  • Despite their tough and fibrous texture, kale stems are edible if cooked.
    • Cut stems into small pieces and add to a stir-fry.
    • Add diced stems to soups.
    • Use to make a vegetable stock.

Make

Kale has hearty leaves that withstand all types of cooking: boiling, braising, steaming, microwaving, and stir-frying. Kale can also be served raw but the texture may be difficult to chew.

More recipe ideas and serving suggestions featuring kale:

Did You Know?

  • Prior to its dramatic rise to popularity in edible form, kale leaves were most commonly used in restaurants as decorative garnishes.
  • Some types of kale offer white, lavender, blue, pink, or purple leaves that are used in floral bouquets.
  • Thomas Jefferson was a kale aficionado, growing and recording several varieties of kale in his garden at Monticello in the early 1800s.

References

  1. Fuentes F, Paredes-Gonzalez X, Kong AN. Dietary glucosinolates sulforaphane, phenethyl isothiocyanate, indole-3-carbinol/3, 3′-diindolylmethane: Antioxidative stress/inflammation, Nrf2, epigenetics/epigenomics and in vivo cancer chemopreventive efficacy. Curr Pharmacol Rep. 2015 Jun 1;1(3):179-96.
  2. Tse G, Eslick GD. Cruciferous vegetables and risk of colorectal neoplasms: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Nutr Cancer. 2014 Jan 1;66(1):128-39.
  3. Fujioka N, Fritz V, Upadhyaya P, Kassie F, Hecht SS. Research on cruciferous vegetables, indole‐3‐carbinol, and cancer prevention: A tribute to Lee W. Wattenberg. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2016 Jun 1;60(6):1228-38.
  4. Zhang X, Shu XO, Xiang YB, Yang G, Li H, Gao J, Cai H, Gao YT, Zheng W. Cruciferous vegetable consumption is associated with a reduced risk of total and cardiovascular disease mortality–. The Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 May 18;94(1):240-6.
  5. Joshipura KJ, Hung HC, Li TY, Hu FB, Rimm EB, Stampfer MJ, Colditz G, Willett WC. Intakes of fruits, vegetables and carbohydrate and the risk of CVD. Public Health Nutr. 2009 Jan;12(1):115-21.
  6. Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-2020, Eighth Edition. https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/appendix-3/ 
  7. Bajaj JK, Salwan P, Salwan S. Various possible toxicants involved in thyroid dysfunction: A Review. J Clin Diagn Res. 2016 Jan;10(1):FE01.

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The contents of this website are for educational purposes and are not intended to offer personal medical advice. You should seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The Nutrition Source does not recommend or endorse any products.

The Truth About Cruciferous Vegetables and Your Thyroid

Green is the new black – when it comes to food. 

Green smoothies have been trending for several years now in the kitchens of clean eaters and in hipster and health cafes. With ingredients like kale, celery, mint, cucumber, spinach leaves and avocado, they offer a super-nutrient hit.

But are cruciferous vegetables like kale and collard greens a good choice for women who are seeking hormone balancing diets? And most importantly, are they the right choice for your body?

Or, could that morning smoothie or plate of bok choy with broccoli be upsetting your thyroid function and causing symptoms of hormone imbalance? And could it be upsetting your thyroid gland?

Your thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located in your neck below your Adam’s apple. It works like the gas pedal for your metabolism and also regulates your weight, energy, gastrointestinal health, nervous system, and hormone balance. It produces two important hormones:

  1. T4 (Thyroxine): This is produced by your thyroid gland when it binds with iodine. It is largely an inactive hormone but gets converted to the more active T3.
  2. T3 (Triiodothyronine): This is the Queen of thyroid hormones. It’s the more active thyroid hormone and is produced from T4 by a metabolic conversion that happens in your gut and liver.

Goitrogenic Foods and Cruciferous Vegetables 

Women who are balancing hormones through diet often eat these. They include:

  • Arugula (rocket)
  • Bok choy
  • Broccoli and broccoli sprouts
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Collard greens
  • Kale
  • Kohlrabi
  • Radishes
  • Mustard greens
  • Soy

Does Kale Lower Thyroid Hormones?

There are very few human studies like this one that measures how the thyroid is affected by crucifers.

Of the available evidence, there is very little to suggest that foods like broccoli upset natural hormone balance and thyroid health.

In this study involving the University of California, researchers concluded that though collard greens, Brussels sprouts, and some Russian kale (Brassica napus) contain enough goitrogenic compounds to potentially decrease iodine uptake, that’s not true for all cruciferous vegetables. The researchers found that turnip tops, broccoli, broccoli rabe, and kale contain less than 10 μmol of goitrogenic chemicals per serving of 100g, concluding that those foods can be considered minimal risk.

In another small study, participants were given 150g of Brussel’s sprouts daily for 4 weeks. Even though these sprouts contained a super high 220 mg per 100 g. of sulfurous chemicals called glucosinolates, they did not affect thyroid function. Measurement of thyrotrophic hormone, thyroxine and tri-iodothyronine in the study subjects was unchanged. The researchers believe this was because the Brussels sprouts were cooked and produced myrosinase, an enzyme that helps to deactivate the glucosinolate levels.

Bottom Line?

There is no evidence that cruciferous vegetables slow down or “kill the thyroid.” Unfortunately, there are many health bloggers who don’t fact-check and have cut and re-pasted incorrect statements claiming that “all leafy greens are bad for your thyroid,” when that’s not the case.

In fact, cruciferous vegetables are super nutritionally dense foods so they are good for women with thyroid issues who are often depleted in micronutrients.

Why Leafy Greens Are Great for Your Thyroid

While it’s possible that large amounts of raw cruciferous foods can somewhat inhibit the thyroid gland’s ability to take up iodine to produce the T4 hormone, there’s a bigger picture. If you have a condition such as Hashimoto’s, the primary focus should be restoring your digestive tract and detoxifying the body – as they are usually the original triggers for thyroid conditions. Avoiding cruciferous vegetables completely does not help improve those health issues.

Leafy greens are richer in vitamins and minerals than any other of their distant veggie cousins. As most Americans are undernourished, cutting out these foods then makes us rely further on supplements – which is not the way we should be living and healing.

Since 90% of thyroid problems occur for autoimmune reasons, I believe it’s more important to restore the health of your immune system through your gut, than obsess about cutting out all crucifers.

I have found that for most women who experience hormone imbalance symptoms, the benefits of cruciferous vegetables outweigh the very small risks. The color and sharp, often bitter flavor of cruciferous veggies confer an impressive range of health benefits that largely come from their levels of glucosinolates, which are powerful plant chemical compounds which come in around 120 different varieties.

Facts About Cruciferous Vegetables

1.

Are Potent Anti-Inflammatory Agents

When you chew and digest your leafy greens, glucosinolates break down into biologically active nutrients called isothiocyanates, which have anti-inflammatory actions. The two most powerful varieties are called sulforaphane and indole-3-carbinol. These protect you against disease. They help switch on antioxidant genes and enzymes in specific immune cells and may neutralize cancerous cells so that they don’t grow and multiply.

2. Support Liver Function and Thyroid Hormone Conversion

Studies also show that these glucosinolates support your liver function by activating phase 2 detoxification. A well functioning liver is critical in helping the conversion of T4 to T3 and that is particularly important for thyroid patients. That conversion in part happens in the liver via a process called deiodination.

3. Help Combat Estrogen Dominance (The leading cause of thyroid nodules and thyroid cancer!)

Most pre-menopausal women I work with have some level of estrogen dominance, which is barely surprising, given the estrogenic cocktail of skincare products, cleaners, packaging and food we are exposed to in our modern world. Leafy greens can reduce the load. Goitrogenic vegetables are rich in a substance called DIM (diindolylmethane) which is key in liver detoxification as well as the elimination of mutated estrogen metabolites. This, in turn, helps women maintain a healthy balance of estrogen, progesterone and thyroid hormone, which is critical if you want to naturally balance hormones.

As a result, you can better filter estrogen metabolites from your body, suggests this research from The Institute for Hormone Research.

In this study, after indole-3-carbinols from crucifers were given to people in supplement form, urine samples were taken. The results showed that increased concentrations of estrogen metabolites were filtered from the body, including greater removal of estradiol, estrone, estriol and 16-alpha-hydroxytestrone. As these estrogen byproducts can be harmful if they keep circulating at high levels, women who eat their leafy greens may reduce estrogen dominance. Stabilizing estrogen can also help stabilize many other hormones. I offer other tips on how to do this here in this article.

If you’re experiencing symptoms estrogen dominance, you can find out more by taking my Free Estrogen Quiz. The truth is estrogen dominance symptoms occur to 75% of women, but a whopping 90% of them don’t even realize they have it. I recommend taking this quiz to find out for yourself here.

4. Have Protective Benefits Against Cancer

Leafy greens not only help prevent cancer and block the new blood vessels that cancerous tumors set up to feed on, they can also help to improve odds of survival for women with breast cancer.

For other natural ways to combat breast cancer, check out this recent post.

5. Benefit Good Bacteria

The rich soluble dietary fibers in crucifers include hemicellulose and pectin. These have been shown in studies to help stabilize blood glucose levels and lower cholesterol. Most importantly, they provide food for different kinds of healthy bacteria.

These bacteria can help to increase your levels of serotonin (which helps boosts your mood) and melatonin (helps aid in sleep) and lower your levels of insulin (protects against weight gain and Diabetes Type 2). Resistant starch can also boost your levels of good bacteria. Learn more about resistant starch foods and how they benefit thyroid health here. 

De-Activating Goitrogens

There are two effective ways to reduce the goitrogenic content of foods like broccoli, kale, silverbeet, and cauliflower:

1. Cook Your Crucifers

As I have explained, cruciferous foods are goitrogenic when raw. But once cooked, the glucosinolates they contain are deactivated, losing up to 80% of their goitrogenic chemicals, so that they no longer block the uptake of iodine. Research from the University of Illinois shows that when lightly cooked but still al dente (after being steamed for three to four minutes), the short exposure to heat warms up broccoli enough to destroy a protein it contains that holds on to sulfur. At the same time, lightly cooking broccoli activates (but does not destroy) the myrosinase enzyme that helps release the broccoli sulfurs. This ensures the sulfurs are more bio-available to be absorbed when eaten, while the goitrogenic effects are lessened.

Boiling can also be very effective because it allows the glucosinolates to leach into the water.

Do you find yourself bored by your usual recipes containing crucifers? Add this delicious Cauliflower and Coconut Red Lentil Dal dish to your cooking repertoire.

2. Ferment Your Crucifers

Fermented vegetables are powerful hormone balancing foods because they contain good bacteria to boost your gut health. And, though fermented crucifers like sauerkraut are raw, you don’t need to cut them out. It’s okay to have one or two small tablespoon servings of fermented foods like broccoli, cabbage, kale or cauliflower a day.

Mix up your ferments so they are not all filled with cruciferous vegetables and don’t forget about fermented foods like miso, dill pickles, coconut water kefir and coconut yoghurt. For a tasty fermented drink, try my recipe Kvass, a Probiotic Beetroot Tonic.

You can also consider cooking crucifers then mixing them in with raw vegetables like carrot and beetroot, for fermentation.

What About Green Smoothies?

Some experts who specialize in female hormone imbalance believe that women with thyroid problems can eat goitrogenic foods with no problem.

Others believe that cruciferous vegetables like kale, compromise or worsen thyroid function. They recommend that women with Hashimoto’s, Graves’ disease or suspected thyroid problems, avoid eating crucifers altogether. Let me share with you that in my experience, having worked over the years with so many Hashimoto’s patients, I have not seen anyone heal by just avoiding cruciferous vegetables.  

Therefore, my recommendation is:

  • Eat cooked cruciferous vegetables in abundance as they pose little risk to women with thyroid conditions and help your liver and gut, which are the key organs you need to support.
  • Reduce intake of raw crucifers if you have a low thyroid function (don’t toss raw kale in your green smoothie every day). If you enjoy raw crucifers and their health benefits, limit your intake to 2 or 3 servings per week. Try this Creamy Asparagus Broccoli Salad for a quick and delicious way to toss together some greens.Or serve this super simple Massaged Kale Salad with some protein for dinner.
  • Minimize oxalates: These are found in foods like kale and they can deposit themselves in the thyroid gland and cause damage. In turn, the thyroid does not produce enough of the T4 hormone. People suffering from poor gut health are particularly susceptible. Oxalates also bind to minerals like calcium, so they’re not easily absorbed.
  • Eat Iodine Rich Foods: If you don’t have an overactive thyroid but you are worried leafy greens could reduce your intake of iodine, eating foods rich in iodine may help counter possible impacts of the goitrogens. Good choices include seaweed, yoghurt and eggs (if they are not reactive for you), fish and shellfish, prunes and of course, Celtic or Himalayan pink salt, which is rich in iodine and minerals.
  • Minimize or avoid intake of soy: Soy (milk, tofu, tempeh, soybean oil) is not only goitrogenic, it also contains phytates, which can bind up your minerals like zinc and magnesium, so you don’t absorb them. For this reason I suggest that you shift from soy to coconut milk in your morning bowl of millet or daily turmeric latte. If you’d like to try making y our own coconut milk, I show you how in this step-by-step quick video cooking presentation. I think you’ll be surprised at just how easy it is to make it yourself.

A Word Of Caution

Having said that crucifers should not be banned from a hormone balancing diet, I want to add a few qualifying comments:

  • If you have hypothyroidism due to a deficiency in iodine, goitrogenic foods could lower your iodine further. So eat them with caution.
  • If you suspect you might have thyroid issues, you may still be making some of your own thyroid hormones in low amounts and goitrogenic foods could deplete that production further.
  • I know many women with thyroid problems who have had great health results when they limit their intake of foods high in goitrogens.
  • I have also met many newly converted vegans and vegetarians who developed thyroid symptoms months after replacing meat protein with lots of soy foods, and goitrogenic foods like kale.

The Bottom Line and My Final Thoughts

The key to treating thyroid conditions (since most of them are autoimmune conditions triggered by troubled digestive health), is to restore your digestive health. This article gives more information on how digestion impacts hormones and weight gain.

Estrogen dominance is the leading cause of thyroid nodules and thyroid cancer – the fastest growing cancer in the United States. Cruciferous vegetables help with estrogen detoxification and prevent the development of nodules and cancers.

Helpful Resource:

If you’re struggling with estrogen dominance and would like to learn more about how to balance your hormones, I invite you to join my Estrogen Reset program.

This is a great resource if you are suffering from:

  • Fibroids
  • Endometriosis
  • Breast lumps and fibrocystic breasts Hot Flashes
  • Amenorrhea (lack of periods)
  • Irregular periods Dysmenorrhea & PMS
  • Menorrhagia (heavy periods)
  • Thyroid nodules
  • Infertility
  • Hip fat and cellulite
  • Breast Cancer (ER+)
  • High testosterone (PCOS)

You can enroll in the Estrogen Reset program here.

Does Kale Slow Down Thyroid Function?

Do you have a thyroid condition? And, if so, were you told to stop eating your beloved Brussels sprouts, broccoli, kale or other cruciferous veggies? The good news is you can bring those healthy and delicious super-foods back! Before we dive into how foods might affect thyroid function, let’s start with a few definitions:

Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis: An autoimmune form of thyroid disease in which the body’s immune system attacks the thyroid gland. This is actually the most common form of hypothyroidism today.

Goitrogens: Foods that may contribute to the formation of a goiter, or enlargement of your thyroid, by limiting iodine uptake and thyroid function. Cruciferous veggies fall under this category and include: broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts and kale.

Outdated Concern:

In the past, practitioners warned patients with hypothyroidism against consuming cruciferous vegetables. The fear was that glucosinolate compounds present in these veggies interfered with iodine absorption. As a result,  goiter formation occurs, further reducing thyroid gland function. However, a decade of both animal and human studies prove cruciferous veggies do not negatively impact thyroid function EXCEPT in the case of a documented iodine deficiency. Iodine deficiency was a common cause of hypothyroidism in the 1950’s, but is rare today.

The Good News:

Cruciferous vegetables are popular. And for good reason. They’re a trend that’s here to stay due to their antioxidant and fiber-rich properties. From hormone balance to detoxification,these low-calorie super-foods belong on everyone’s table. Research states as long as iodine levels are sufficient, you are free to enjoy the many benefits of cruciferous veggies without worrying about decreasing thyroid function.

If you are unsure of your iodine status, or still uneasy about including cruciferous veggies with the presence of hypothyroidism, try these suggestions:

  1. Consume the majority of your cruciferous veggies cooked instead of raw. Cooking them reduces the glucosinalate content largely responsible for the goitrogenic effect.
  2. Limit the amount, initially, especially raw (this includes juicing those vegetables).
  3. Work on getting more iodine in your diet. We recommend getting iodine from plant sources versus iodized salt. Options include: kelp, sea veggies, dulse, nori, or kelp sprinkles. These add great flavor to savory dishes.

Try these veggie recipes the aid healthy thyroid function:

Bacon Wrapped Brussels

Cauliflower Potato Salad

Tahini Dijon Noodles

Cauliflower Hummus

Cauliflower Pizza Steaks

Resources:

  1. Mcmillan, M., Spinks, E., & Fenwick, G. (1986). Preliminary Observations on the Effect of Dietary Brussels Sprouts on Thyroid Function. Human Toxicology, 5(1), 15-19.
  2. Cho YA, Kim J. Dietary factors affecting thyroid cancer risk: a meta-analysis. Nutr Cancer. 2015;67(5):811-817.

The Real Deal on Kale and Your Thyroid

Kale yeah, kale is still magnificent! Similar to A-list celebrities, kale – once touted for its infinitely breathtaking nutrient composition, its superhero ability to stave off chronic disease risk, and its detoxification dexterity  –  has recently been bad-mouthed by the press and then thrown to the wayside, leaving it feeling unappreciated. Why was kale been kicked to the curb along with its cruciferous cousins?

Because it contains a compound called “goitrogens.” Fancy as it all sounds, goitrogens are simply any substances that can contribute to the development of a goiter, which is an abnormally enlarged thyroid gland, indicating either over- or under-production of thyroid hormones. Most commonly, goiters are caused by a deficiency in the mineral iodine. Another mineral, selenium, is also required for optimal thyroid function, and a deficiency can increase risk for goiters and thyroid problems, particularly when occurring together with iodine deficiency.

Both iodine and selenium are essential minerals found sparsely and inconsistently in the food supply. Approximately one-third of the global population suffers from iodine deficiency and subsequent thyroid problems are common in these people, mostly found in remote, mountainous regions around the world. When the body does not have adequate iodine to meet thyroid hormone production needs, the pituitary gland releases hormones that cause the thyroid gland to enlarge in a compensatory response. This increases the surface area, helping to increase blood supply in search of more iodine from dietary sources, causing a goiter to appear.

So what does kale have to do with all of this? Kale and other cruciferous vegetables contain phytochemicals called glucosinolates. These nutrients convert into isothiocyanates in the body when consumed, particularly in their raw form, via the enzyme myrosinase. Isothiocyanates have been found to help detoxify, fight cancer cell growth, and act as antioxidants, so they live up to their powerhouse prominence. However, the metabolites of these compounds compete with iodine for uptake into the thyroid. Thus, excessive intakes of isothiocyanates have been associated with a potential risk to thyroid function, especially in the presence of an iodine or selenium deficiency.

Now, when I say “excessive,” I am referring to extremely excessive. Excessive as in eating pounds and pounds of raw cruciferous vegetables a day, something most people do not typically do (even though some may strive to). A more balanced, regular, daily consumption of kale and other cruciferous vegetables is perfectly safe (and beneficial) for the majority of people with a healthy thyroid and adequate iodine and selenium intake. Also of note is the fact that isothiocyanates are sensitive to heat and are mostly deactivated with cooking. Thus, mixing up your cruciferi as both cooked and raw could offer some advantages.

Cruciferous vegetables are extraordinarily health-promoting and have been shown to exert powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, reducing risk for many chronic diseases and supporting immune health. Kale, specifically, is loaded with vitamins K, C, carotenoids, iron, calcium, omega-3 fats, and much, much more.

Even for those with thyroid issues, consult with your healthcare practitioner, but it is possible to still consume cruciferous veggies safely and gain all of the awe-inspiring benefits. So enjoy your kale, both raw and cooked, but stay on top of your iodine and selenium intake. Adults aged 14 and up require 150 micrograms a day, and this can be found in sea vegetables, iodized salt (which is not as commonly used these days), and in supplement form. Selenium, needed in adults over 14 years old at 55 micrograms a day, can be found in just one or two Brazil nuts, as well as in smaller doses in other nuts, seeds, beans, and whole grains.

So, the final verdict? Long live kale in all its delicious, nutritious magnificence!

For more great tips from Julieanna, check out her website  www.plantbaseddietitian.com or follow her on Twitter @PlantDietitian

We also highly recommend downloading our Food Monster App, which is available for both Android and iPhone, and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook. The app has more than 8,000 plant-based, allergy-friendly recipes, and subscribers gain access to ten new recipes per day. Check it out!

 

Image source: Avocado Kale Chili Salad

Various Possible Toxicants Involved in Thyroid Dysfunction: A Review

J Clin Diagn Res. 2016 Jan; 10(1): FE01–FE03.

,1,2 and 3

Jagminder K. Bajaj

1 Professor and Head, Department of Pharmacology, PIMS, Jalandhar, India.

Poonam Salwan

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology, SGT Medical College and Hospital, Gurgaon, India.

Shalini Salwan

3 Associate Professor, Department of Pharmacology, PIMS, Jalandhar, India.

1 Professor and Head, Department of Pharmacology, PIMS, Jalandhar, India.

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology, SGT Medical College and Hospital, Gurgaon, India.

3 Associate Professor, Department of Pharmacology, PIMS, Jalandhar, India.

Corresponding author.NAME, ADDRESS, E-MAIL ID OF THE CORRESPONDING AUTHOR: Dr. Shalini Salwan, Associate Professor, Department of Pharmacology, PIMS, Jalandhar-144001, India. E-mail: [email protected]

Received 2015 Jun 12; Revisions requested 2015 Aug 28; Accepted 2015 Oct 28.

Copyright © 2016 Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic ResearchThis article has been cited by other articles in PMC.

Abstract

About 300 million people across the world suffer from thyroid gland dysfunction. Environmental factors play an important role in causation of autoimmune thyroid diseases in susceptible individuals. Genetics contributes to 70% of the risk. In order to reduce the risk, we need to understand the association of environmental agents with thyroid dysfunction. These factors are especially relevant for those at increased risk due to positive family history. The ideal study to see the impact of a thyroid toxicant consists of directly measuring the degree of exposure to toxicant in an individual with his thyroid status. Knowledge of various factors influencing thyroid dysfunction can help in interpreting the results of such studies in a better way. This article is an attempt to highlight the various possible toxicants affecting thyroid function so that adequate measures can be undertaken to control excessive exposure in future to reduce the prevalence of thyroid disorders.

Keywords: Goiter, Hypothyroidism, Thyroid disorders, Thyroid

Introduction

Thyroid gland produces three important metabolic hormones, thyroxine, tri-iodothyronine, and calcitonin [1]. Thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) produced by the anterior pituitary gland controls the production of these hormones. Iodine, derived mainly from sea-foods or consumed in the form of iodized salt, is utilized for producing T3 and T4 hormones [2]. Thyroid Disorders are the commonest amongst the various glandular disorders of the endocrine system [3]. According to a recently released report, about 300 million people in the world are suffering from this endocrine problem, out of which 42 million are Indians [4,5]. The prevalence of thyroid disorders is not distinctive in different age groups, sex as well as different areas [6]. Common thyroid disorders include hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, goiter and other Iodine deficiency disorders, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and thyroid cancer [7]. The untreated thyroid disease can produce serious consequences especially cardiovascular diseases. So, improved public awareness about thyroid disorders and the responsible factors for it is important to cope with thyroid illness [8].

The prevalence of hypothyroidism in 8 major cities of India is reported to be 10.95% with significantly higher proportion of females vs. males (15.86% vs. 5.02%) and older vs. younger (13.11% vs. 7.53%) adults and 21.85% patients tested positive for anti-TPO antibodies [9]. Another study however showed the prevalence of hypothyroidism to be 3.9%; out of which 53% of subjects with subclinical hypothyroidism were positive for anti-TPO antibodies. Urinary iodine status in the same population showed it to be iodine sufficient. Anti-TPO antibodies reported in more than a third of community detected hyperthyroid cases [10]. In the past, endemic goiter has been linked to iodine deficiency by several prominent researchers [11–13] but despite iodization, its prevalence has not reduced, hence thyroid auto-immunity and other goitrogens seem to play important role in causation of goiter [14].

Genetic predisposition is reported in about 70-80% of autoimmune thyroid disease [15], the rest 20-30% contributed by environmental triggers based on animal and human studies [16–19]. Thus, the knowledge of environmental factors that trigger autoimmune thyroid diseasemay help in reducing the risk [20].

Some of the factors proposed from various human and animal studies are:

Dietary Factors

  1. Excess dietary iodine: In genetically susceptible individuals, increased consumption of Iodine can act as a trigger for thyroiditis [21,22]. Iodine laden foods viz. kelp seaweed, iodinated salt, iodine additives to bread /flour, preservatives, medicines such as amiodarone, vitamins, Lugol’sIodine topical antiseptics and contrast dyes may act as starting point as highly iodinated thyroglobulin is demonstrated to be more immunogenic than poorly iodinated one [23–25]. Iodine may also have a direct toxic effect on thyroid via free oxygen radicals and immune stimulation [26].

  2. Naturally occurring goitrogens: They are found in legumes, plants, amiodarone, lithium [27], in addition to cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, turnip, forms of root cassava. Soy or soy enriched foods can also aggravate thyroid problems reducing T4 absorption and interfering with thyroid hormone action [28] and are reported to increase auto-immune thyroid disease [29].

    1. Role of Dietary Fat: Nutrition can affect hypothalamo-pituitary thyroidal axis [30]. Dietary fat composition influences TSH secretion, thyroid peroxidase activity, hepatic deiodinase activities and T3 binding to nuclear receptors. In a study conducted on male Wistar rats, fed on diets differing in fat composition, total and free thyroxine levels were found to be higher in saturated fat fed group than others. Further Tri-iodothyronine and thyroid peroxidase levels were reported to decrease in rats fed on polyunsaturated fats and increased in rats fed on monounsaturated fats. However, hepatic de iodinase activity decreased irrespective of fat composition [31]. TPO activity might be stimulated by consumption of polyunsaturated n-3 FA and monounsaturated n-9 FA while it is reduced by saturated and polyunsaturated n-6 FA. Stimulating effects of n-3 PUFA have also been observed for transthyretin expression in brain [32] and thyrocyte proliferation [33]. However, other results also suggest involvement of PUFA n-6 in stimulation of thyroid activity [34]. Dietary high–fat lard intake induced significant thyroid dysfunction and abnormal morphology in rats which failed to be corrected by short-term dietary modification. Raised triglyceride levels and decreased total T4 and free T4 levels along with raised serum TSH levels were noted [35]. In another study on rat model, the effect of thermally oxidized dietary fats was noted. Raised plasma thyroxine concentration showed that oxidized fats can also alter the morphology and function of thyroid gland [36].

    2. Role of Green Tea: Thyroid function can be impaired by green tea extracts at high doses. A significant decrease in serum T3 and T4 and increase in TSH levels has been reported along with decreased TPO and deiodinase activity in response to dietary green tea extract in rats [37]. A recent study conducted to see the effect of catechins, the flavonoids in green tea on thyroid physiology in rat model concluded decreased activity of thyroid peroxide and 5’-deiodinaseI enzymes. Decreased levels of serum T3 and T4 along with significant elevation of TSH was noted [38].

    3. Soy and Soybean Ppoduct: One of the studies reported the development of goiter and hypothyroidism in a 10-month-old infant who was put on soybean product right from birth but it reversed with soybean product withdrawal and Lugol’s iodine drops. In addition, thyroid showed high uptake of I131 after soybean product withdrawal. Studies on adults revealed significant suppression in plasma-bound I131 while receiving soybean product [39]. Thus soybean product seemed to contain goitrogenic agent which affects thyroid function. A review of 14 trials concluded that although soya protein and isoflavones do not affect normal thyroid function in people with sufficient iodine intake but they may interfere with absorption of synthetic thyroid hormone increasing the dose of medication in hypothyroid patients [40].

    4. Cyanogenic Plant Foods: Raw, boiled and cooked extracts of various cyanogenic plant foods including cauliflower, cabbage, mustard, turnip, raddish, bamboo shoot and cassava have been shown to possess anti-TPO activity. Moreover, boiled exracts of these cyanogenic plant foods showed highest anti-TPO potency followed by cooked and raw extracts. Goitrin is an active goitrogen present in plants of Rutabaga, turnip and Brassicae seeds. However, cooking destroys the enzyme responsible for activation of progoitrin to goitrin thus negating its anti-thyroidal potency. Goitrogenic foods if consumed in considerable quantities may contribute to development of goiter but it is difficult to incriminate them as aetiologic factors in vast majority of goitrous patients [41].

    5. Role of Groundnut: The effects of groundnut supplements on size and iodine content of thyroid and radioactive I131 uptake and its urinary excretion were studied in albino rats. Groundnuts (active principle arachidoside) were reported to be goitrogenic, however this effect was inhibited by small amounts of iodine as potassium iodide [42,43].

    6. Role of Millet: Various studies on rats and thyroid slices of pork have shown that millet diets containing C-glycosylflavones (glycosylvitexin, glycosylorientin and vitexin) produce effects resembling small doses of anti-thyroid drug, methimazole. Maximum anti-thyroid effect and significant increase in thyroid weight along with maximum inhibition of TPO activity was seen with millet bran fraction having maximum concentration C-glycosylflavones [44].

    7. Selenium deficiency and Vitamin B12 deficiency have also been implicated in autoimmune thyroiditis [45].

Environmental Factors

  1. Organochlorine compounds found in pesticides, induce hepatic enzymes leading to decreased half-life of serum thyroxine (T4) [46].

  2. Isoflavones: reduce thyroperoxidase activity [47].

  3. Polychlorinated biphenyls, polybrominateddiphenylethers, bisphenol-A, and triclosan may have direct action on thyroid hormone receptor [47].

  4. Perchlorates found in rocket fuels, thiocyanates and nitrates interfere with iodine uptake [47]. A study conducted on pregnant women living in an industrial area in south California showed strong association between increased urinary perchlorate and decreased total and free thyroxine levels along with increased TSH levels [48].

  5. Cosmetics: UV filters meant to protect skin from UV irradiation can also alter thyroid homeostasis [49]. A study on Benzophenone-2 treated rats showed low T4 levels and high TSH levels besides altered Thyroid-peroxidase activity [49]. Another chemical OMC (Octyl-methoxycinnamate)causes dose dependent decrease in serum T3 and T4 concentration in rats [50].

  6. Heavy metals: Heavy metals like cadmium and lead are known to affect thyroid function. In a study on adult cows, lead exposed cows living in polluted areas showed significantly higher blood lead and T3, T4 concentration [51]. In a study on pregnant women, those from lead exposed town had lower mean free thyroxine (FT4), higher mean TPO antibodies along with higher lead concentration suggesting stimulation of auto-immunity by prolonged lead exposure [52].

  7. Studies using genetically exposed mice have also shown bromine and bacterial lipopolysaccharides to triggerautoimmune thyroiditis [53].

  8. In the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANESIII), relationship between smoking and thyroid abnormalities was evaluated. Smoking has been found to be inversely related to the prevalence of serum thyroid auto-antibodies. Lesser number of smokers were shown to have serum thyroid auto-antibodies (11%) and elevated TSH (2. 6%) in comparison to non-smokers (18%) and (5.5%) respectively [54].

  9. Role of Age: Thyroid diseases are reported to be more common in perimenopausal and menopausal women because of altered balance between oestrogen and progesterone [55], However, daily administration of genisteinaglycone (a known goitrogen) to post-menopausal women over a period of 3 years did not modify T3, T4, TSH levels and enzyme activity [56] hence proving there is no relation of age to thyroid diseases.

Conclusion

The goitrogenic potential of a plant or food depends upon the amount of active goitrogen present in it. Various procedures like soaking, washing, boiling and cooking can help in reducing the goitrogenic potency of these foods. These, along with the intake of iodide supplements are generally practiced in areas where goitrogenic foods are routinely consumed. How far these measures are effective in reducing anti-thyroidal activity is still unclear. Patients suffering from hypothyroidism can avoid consumption of raw cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, mustard greens, kale, and turnip. In addition, daily diet should include thyroid boosting foods like those rich in iodine, amino acid tyrosine, minerals like selenium, zinc, copper, iron, various vitamins including, B2, B3, B6, C and E. The benefits of iodine repletion outweigh the risk of thyroid auto-immunity, hence global iodine sufficiency should be ensured. The amount of fat consumed and its composition definitely influences thyroid activity as evident from the study quoted above but more studies are required to validate the results. It is difficult to prove the role of environmental chemicals in increasing susceptibility to autoimmune thyroid disease although they have been blamed for its causation since long. Further studies on environmental toxicants can provide an indepth view of the impact of these agents.

Notes

Financial or Other Competing Interests

None.

References

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Kale Might Not Be As Good for You As You Think

  • Kale is packed full of things that are good for you like protein, vitamin A, and vitamin K.
  • But if you have an underactive thyroid, it might be a good idea not to eat too much of it.
  • Certain compounds in the vegetable can interfere with thyroid hormone synthesis and essentially block the iodine your thyroid needs to function.
  • You probably would have to eat an excessive amount for this to happen, though.
  • Kale also lists highly in the US for being contaminated with pesticides, so you should wash it thoroughly before eating it raw.

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There’s no doubt that kale is an excellent health food. Just one cup can give you more than 200% of your vitamin A for the day, and nearly 700% of your

vitamin K
. It also contains certain plant compounds that can help protect against certain cancers.

But in some cases, eating kale might not be as healthy as you think. For example, it can interact with thyroid function if it’s eaten in very high amounts. It contains something called progoitrin, which can interfere with thyroid hormone synthesis and essentially block the iodine your thyroid needs to function. This can result in fluctuating blood sugar levels and weight.

However, it’s probably not something to worry about as you would have to eat an excessive amount of raw kale to experience these negative effects — a lot more then you’re likely to have in one sitting. If you’re unsure, or you have an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) already, ask your doctor or a dietitian.

Read more: Bubble tea is a whole lot worse for you than regular tea. Here’s why.

If you regularly eat kale, it might also be a good idea to make sure you wash it thoroughly. The Environmental Working Group just released its “Dirty Dozen” list for the year, which is a guide to the products that are covered in the most pesticides.

It found that kale had the highest pesticide residues compared to nearly all other produce found on supermarket shelves in the US.

About 60% of the kale samples tested positive for Dacthal, which is listed as a Group C human carcinogen according to the National Library of Medicine — meaning there is suggestive evidence of carcinogenic potential but more research is needed.

“We were surprised kale had so many pesticides on it, but the test results were unequivocal,” said EWG toxicologist Alexis Temkin. “Fruits and vegetables are an important part of everyone’s diet, and when it comes to some conventionally grown produce items, such as kale, choosing organic may be a better option.”

Nutrition for thyroid nodules

The thyroid gland regulates metabolism, synthesizes hormones responsible for the growth and development of the body. Thyroid diseases can be divided into two groups. The first – diseases with changes in the structure of the thyroid gland, and the second group – with dysfunction of the gland.

According to statistics, 50% of adults have nodules that are found both on palpation of the thyroid gland and during ultrasound. One of the main causes of nodules is a lack of iodine, which is necessary for the synthesis of thyroid hormones.When nodes are found, it is necessary to determine the function of the thyroid gland, that is, the level of hormones. Options for increased and decreased function are possible. At higher and lower levels, the diet will be different.

In hypothyroidism – low thyroid function, it is important to eat foods rich in iodine. Leaders in iodine content are seafood (seaweed, shrimp, mussels, crabs) and sea fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, salmon, pink salmon, tuna). It is recommended that you replace regular table salt in your kitchen with iodized salt.You also need to reduce the intake of fats and carbohydrates, exclude foods high in cholesterol. Processed foods and fast food, canned food, ready-made meals from supermarkets and cafes often contain too much salt, but, alas, not iodized. And also – chemical dyes and preservatives, which additionally load the gastrointestinal tract, disrupting the absorption of beneficial trace elements. It is necessary to increase the consumption of fermented milk products, cereals, fruits, berries (rose hips, raspberries, gooseberries, persimmons, blueberries, apples), vegetables (onions, radishes, pumpkin, eggplants, cauliflower, peppers, green peas, asparagus, beets), herbs ( spinach, lettuce, parsley, cilantro, arugula), nuts (walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds).

In hyperthyroidism, when the thyroid gland produces too many hormones, iodine is contraindicated. Therefore, foods that contain large quantities of it should be excluded. Limited to sea fish and seafood, seaweed, iodized salt. It is imperative that the diet contains foods high in fiber (whole grains, oatmeal, vegetables, fruits, berries, nuts) and a sufficient amount of water, which will allow you to remove metabolic products from the body and muffle increased appetite.It is not recommended to eat foods that stimulate the central nervous system: fried, smoked, spicy, rich broths, mushrooms, chocolate, coffee and tea, alcohol, spices, canned food. It is also recommended to reduce the intake of foods that cause fermentation in the intestines, for example, radishes, legumes, cabbage, plums, apricots, grapes, pickles, carbonated drinks. Nutrition for hyperthyroidism is recommended frequent, but fractional. Cooking is best done with steam or in the oven.

It must be remembered that for any diseases of the thyroid gland, the diet should be formulated in such a way that the body receives a sufficient amount of vitamins (A, B, C, D, E) and trace elements (selenium, zinc, iron, copper, magnesium).

Important! The use of iodine preparations is indicated for pregnant women, lactating women and children. However, only a doctor can prescribe treatment. If you want to maintain your health, when taking any medications, vitamins and dietary supplements, you should consult a specialist.

Endocrinologist Shanets Alina Leonidovna

Healthcare Institution “22nd City Polyclinic”

Cruciferous vegetables – benefits and harms in cancer, thyroid diseases

Cruciferous vegetables: recipes, history

Vegetables of the Cruciferous (or Cabbage) family have caused a lot of controversy lately.This is due to both their impressive nutritional properties and possible side effects. Some scientists argue that these vegetables are able to kill cancer cells and normalize hormones, while others talk about their detrimental effect on the thyroid gland and gastrointestinal tract.

This group includes many vegetables that are low in calories. But there are many vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. In addition, they contain compounds that strengthen health and immunity.

But are the benefits of these vegetables worth the risks? How tall are they? Let’s find out.

What are cruciferous vegetables?

The scientific name for this family is Brassicaceae . Plants of this group get their name from the Latin word “Cruciferae” which means “bearing cross”, for their flowers in the shape of a cross.

Vegetables are native to Europe, the Mediterranean and the temperate latitudes of Asia, but they have gained widespread popularity and are now cultivated around the world.

Cabbage is low in calories, but has a high concentration of nutrients. The amount of certain elements in different vegetables may be different, but they all contain a lot of vitamins A, C, K and dietary fiber.

Cruciferous plants are unique in that they contain sulfur-containing compounds glucosinolates, which have anti-cancer properties. They are also helpful in promoting heart health, losing weight, and reducing inflammation.

Top 16 cruciferous vegetables

Perhaps everyone can find vegetables of this group to their liking. Below we have presented a list of the most popular ones that can be included in almost any diet (even paleo, keto):

  • Arugula
  • Bok Choy
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • White cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Collard cabbage
  • Calais
  • Kohlrabi
  • Maca
  • Mitsuna
  • Mustard leaf
  • Radish
  • Rutabaga
  • Turnip
  • Watercress

Health Benefits

1.Contains anti-cancer ingredients

Crucifers have many anti-cancer properties. They are not only rich in antioxidants, which neutralize free radicals, but also contain glucosinolates and indole-3-carbinol, which prevent the development of cancer.

Several studies have shown a relationship between kale consumption and cancer prevention. For example, a review comparing the results of 94 studies concluded that high amounts of cruciferous vegetables in the diet reduced the risk of lung, stomach, colon and rectal cancer.

However, don’t forget about other anti-cancer foods like berries, citrus fruits, nuts and seeds.

2. Relieve inflammation

Inflammation is the body’s normal immune response to defend against disease or infection. Chronic inflammation, on the other hand, can lead to the development of ailment and lead to heart disease, cancer and diabetes.

Without a doubt, cabbage can effectively reduce inflammation.A 2014 study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found that high consumption of cruciferous vegetables led to a 25% reduction in markers of inflammation in 1,005 women.

Reducing inflammation can relieve conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, and asthma. The most effective anti-inflammatory foods also include beets, celery, blueberries, and pineapple.

3. Regulate blood sugar levels

Cruciferous plants are high in dietary fiber.For example, a small bowl of Brussels sprouts contains about two grams of fiber, which is 10% of the daily value. And in just one serving!

Fiber slows down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, preventing surges in this indicator. In addition, a 2016 study in China found that high amounts of cruciferous vegetables in the diet significantly reduced the risk of type 2 diabetes in 306,723 volunteers.

Combine 1 to 2 servings of cabbage vegetables with exercise and a healthy lifestyle to sustainably normalize blood sugar levels.

4. Promote weight loss

Do you want to quickly lose a couple of pounds? And cabbage will help you with this.

It is low in calories and high in fiber, which slowly passes undigested through the gastrointestinal tract, promoting satiety and warding off snack cravings. A 2009 study by the College of Human Health and Performance at Brigham Young University, USA, involved 252 women over 20 months. The results showed that each gram of dietary fiber reduced body weight by 200 grams and body fat by 0.25%.

And a study published in the journal PLoS One suggests that a serving of cruciferous vegetables results in a weight loss of 300 grams over two years.

Of course, it’s not enough to just eat broccoli every day to lose weight; you should have plenty of other fruits and vegetables in your diet, cut out ultra-processed foods, and exercise regularly.

5. Promote heart health

Heart disease is one of the most common causes of death in the world today.So, it is estimated that by 2030 44% of the US population will have problems with this organ. Cruciferous plants can help to cope with the disease and improve health.

Several studies have concluded that high consumption of vegetables in general reduces the risk of heart disease. And a large study published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, in which 134,796 adult volunteers participated over 10 years, found that vegetables (especially cruciferous vegetables) reduced the risk of death from heart disease.

Besides vegetables, there are other ways to protect yourself against coronary heart disease: minimize alcohol consumption, quit smoking, avoid stress, and lead a healthy and active lifestyle.

6. Regulates the level of estrogen

Estrogen is a female sex hormone responsible for the reproductive system. However, levels that are too high can disrupt hormonal levels and cause symptoms such as bloating, irregular periods, decreased sex drive, and headaches.

Crucifers regulate estrogen levels

Scientists have identified a link between cruciferous vegetables and estrogen. The compound indole-3-carbinol, present in these vegetables, regulates estrogen activity and metabolism. Thus, cabbage is able to regulate hormone levels and prevent unwanted side effects from occurring.

You can also balance your hormones by replacing carbohydrates with healthy fats, using essential oils and adaptogenic herbs, and ensuring you sleep well.

Side effects

Despite the beneficial properties of crucifers, it is worth considering their possible side effects.

The most common of these are gases. The fiber in vegetables undergoes fermentation in the large intestine, which can cause excess flatulence. For this reason, you should gradually increase your fiber intake, chew food thoroughly, and drink more fluids.

There is also some relationship between cabbage vegetables and thyroid problems.Raw vegetables release goobogens during digestion, which can increase the need for iodine and cause damage to the thyroid gland.

However, research has shown that cruciferous vegetables can only cause thyroid problems in high amounts in a person with iodine deficiency. If you have problems with your thyroid gland, we recommend that you process these vegetables and limit yourself to 1-2 servings per day.

Cruciferous and non-cruciferous vegetables

Plants of the Brassicaceae family are very useful.So, they contain sulfur-containing compounds, including sulforaphane, glucosinolates and indole-3-carbinol.

However, there are other vegetables that are not included in this group, which also have many beneficial properties. For example, spinach is considered a very nutritious food. It is a rich source of vitamins A, K and antioxidants.

Here are some more vegetables that you can safely add to your diet:

  • Asparagus
  • Carrot
  • Celery
  • Mangold
  • Cucumbers
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Sweet potato
  • Zucchini

How to use

Cruciferous vegetables are very popular, some vegetables of this family can be found literally in any store, supermarket or market, both fresh and frozen.

There are also quite a few cooking methods. They can be eaten raw, boiled, stewed or fried, added to a dish, or used as a side dish on their own.

Recipes

There are many options to include crucifers in your diet, from salads to stews. Here are just a few recipes:

  • Pot beef with broccoli
  • Roasted kale and chickpea salad
  • Solyanka
  • Bok-choy with garlic and ginger
  • Stew with turkey bacon and Brussels sprouts

One of the cooking options (Bok-choy)

History

Cruciferous vegetables have been a staple food for thousands of years.Thus, scientists have discovered in China the preserved seeds of the Brassicaceae family, dating back to 4000-5000 years. BC NS. Some vegetables were used for medicinal purposes in ancient Greece. Greek doctors (including Hippocrates) advised the use of mustard to treat scorpion bites.

In the Middle Ages, cabbage vegetables gained widespread popularity in Europe. By the 16th century, vegetables such as cabbage were considered an excellent remedy for many ailments. The Flemings and Germans used cabbage before and after meals to promote health.

One way or another, crucifers began to be used to treat completely different diseases, from an enlarged spleen to heart pain and poisonous snake bites. Mustard seeds were used to treat toothaches, and horseradish root was mixed with white wine and bitter apples to treat jaundice.

Today, crucifers are found in traditional dishes from all over the world. And as new research opens up new possibilities in them, vegetables continue to gain in popularity.

Precautions

Some people may be sensitive to certain types of vegetables in this family. If you experience any food allergy symptoms (swelling or itching), stop eating the vegetable immediately and see your doctor.

In addition, cabbage vegetables are considered goitrogenic vegetables, which means they can disrupt the production of thyroid hormones. Studies have shown that only a large amount of vegetables can cause hypothyroidism.However, it should be borne in mind, especially if you suffer from any thyroid problems. In this case, limit your cruciferous consumption to 1-2 servings a day, after subjecting them to heat treatment.

High amounts of cruciferous vegetables in the diet can also cause flatulence due to their high fiber content. Increase the amount of fiber in your diet gradually, drink plenty of water, and limit your vegetable intake if gas becomes a problem.

Final conclusions

  • Cruciferous vegetables are vegetables in the Brassicaceae family.
  • They are low in calories, but high in vitamins A, C, K and antioxidants. They also contain sulfur-containing compounds that have many beneficial properties.
  • Research has shown that cruciferous vegetables contain anti-cancer substances that can reduce inflammation, regulate estrogen and blood sugar levels, promote weight loss, and promote heart health.
  • Large amounts of cruciferous vegetables in the diet can lead to unwanted gas and thyroid problems. In this case, we recommend eating processed vegetables, no more than 1-2 servings per day.
  • Vegetables can be boiled, stewed, fried and baked, added to dishes or used as an independent side dish.
  • For maximum benefits, combine crucifers with other vegetables and fruits, healthy fats, plant proteins, and whole grains.

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Thyroid health – Konchalovsky City Clinical Hospital

World Thyroid Prevention Day is celebrated annually on May 25. This small butterfly-shaped organ influences every aspect of our lives, including mood and appearance. After all, it produces hormones that regulate almost all metabolic processes.

The thyroid gland is located in the neck under the larynx in front of the trachea, stores iodine and produces iodine-containing hormones – thyroxine (tetraiodothyronine, T4) and triiodothyronine (T3), as well as calcitonin, which is involved in calcium metabolism.

Thyroid hormones, are involved in almost all processes in the body:

  • Metabolic rate
  • Mental and physical development
  • Regulation of growth and development of bones of the skeleton
  • The state of the nervous system
  • Regulation of the respiratory and cardiovascular system
  • Processes of glucose absorption and utilization
  • Regulation of water-salt metabolism
  • Reproductive system
  • Maintaining a constant body temperature

Main causes of thyroid disease:

  • Unfavorable environmental conditions (insolation, radiation, the level of technogenic pollution, toxic substances)
  • Poor nutrition – iodine deficiency in food;
  • Heredity (presence of thyroid diseases in blood relatives)
  • Stress
  • Radiation diagnostic and therapeutic effects in the head and neck area
  • Diseases of the hypothalamus and pituitary gland
  • Infectious and viral diseases;
  • Autoimmune diseases;
  • Medical interventions (surgery, use of drugs that impair thyroid function)

The spectrum of thyroid diseases is quite diverse and includes:

  • hypothyroidism (decreased thyroid function)
  • chronic autoimmune thyroiditis
  • subacute thyroiditis
  • diffuse toxic goiter (enlargement of the thyroid gland, accompanied by hyperproduction of hormones)
  • diffuse euthyroid goiter (enlargement of the thyroid gland without impairing its function)
  • nodular goiter (formation of nodes in the thyroid gland)
  • thyroid cancer

The symptoms of thyroid disease are very diverse: irritability, tearfulness, tremor of the fingers, fatigue, drowsiness, edema, weight gain, hair loss, brittle nails, dry skin or severe sweating, tendency to constipation or diarrhea, displacement the eyeball forward (manifested by “bulging”).When squeezing adjacent structures with an enlarged thyroid gland, a feeling of pressure, a lump in the throat, difficulty swallowing, frequent coughing, and hoarseness can occur.

Iodine deficiency diseases are pathological conditions that occur in the absence of iodine in the body. They can be prevented by replenishing this micronutrient. The daily need for iodine depends on the age and physiological state of the person. The daily iodine requirement for an adult is 150-220 mcg.

Iodine deficiency diseases are among the most common non-communicable diseases of mankind.According to the WHO, every third inhabitant of the planet has a risk of development. Iodine deficiency can manifest itself as endemic goiter, hypothyroidism, thyrotoxicosis, mental retardation, cretinism (an extreme degree of mental retardation caused by organic brain damage).

Prevention of thyroid diseases:

  1. Rational nutrition, taking into account the body’s needs for iodine
    The main source of iodine is seafood: fish, seaweed, mussels, shrimps, oysters, squid; and also: persimmons, dates, feijoa, bananas, chokeberry, currants, prunes, apples, cherries, beets, eggplant, garlic, lettuce, spinach, tomatoes and onions.
    The assimilation of iodine is facilitated by vitamins C and A, microelements (copper, zinc, selenium, molybdenum, cobalt), complete proteins.
    Prevent iodine from entering the thyroid gland when consumed in sick quantities: cabbage, turnip, radish, radish, dill, beans, carrots, soybeans, peaches, peanuts.
  2. The use of iodized salt can reduce the likelihood of developing thyroid diseases by almost 90%. However, it should be remembered that with prolonged heat treatment, iodized salt loses its beneficial properties, therefore it is better to use it in ready-made dishes, salads.
  3. Drinking clean drinking water.
    It is recommended to use various purifiers and filtering devices to reduce the amount of hazardous impurities and harmful elements in the water.
  4. In terms of individual prevention and treatment of endemic goiter, preparations containing iodine are used. A prophylactic appointment is usually carried out for several years, if indicated, for life. Before using the drugs, a specialist consultation is required.
  5. Normalization of body weight
  6. Quitting smoking
  7. Avoid prolonged exposure to direct sunlight, use sunscreen.

Take care of yourself and be healthy!

Truth and myths about thyroid diseases

The thyroid gland is one of the most important organs of our body, which has the shape of a butterfly and produces iodine-containing hormones that regulate the work of many organs and systems in the body. Due to the work of thyroid hormones, every cell of a person lives.

The thyroid gland is one of the most important organs of our body, shaped like a butterfly and producing iodine-containing hormones that regulate the work of many organs and systems in the body.Due to the work of thyroid hormones, every cell of a person lives.

Unfortunately, every year the number of people suffering from thyroid diseases is increasing. At the same time, the number of useful tips for treating it and making life easier for patients is also growing.

Head of the Chelyabinsk Regional Endocrinological Center, Chief Freelance Endocrinologist of the Ministry of Health of the Chelyabinsk Region, Candidate of Medical Sciences Valeria Tyulganova helped dispel myths about thyroid diseases and told Ural-press-inform about the main principles of treatment and prevention of such diseases.

– Valeria Leonidovna, how widespread are thyroid diseases in the Chelyabinsk region?

– The Chelyabinsk region is endemic for goiter, that is, in the South Urals there is a lack of iodine in food, water, and the environment. That is why thyroid diseases are widespread in our region. Currently, they are in second place among endocrine diseases. The palm is held by diabetes mellitus, it accounts for about 49% of all endocrine diseases, and thyroid diseases make up about 35-38%.

– What are the most common thyroid disorders?

– Some of the most common endocrine diseases associated with a dysfunction of the thyroid gland are diffuse enlargement of the thyroid gland (goiter), thyroid nodules, as well as hypothyroidism, or decreased production of thyroid hormones, and hyperthyroidism, or diseases with increased production of thyroid hormones iron.

– In what cases is it necessary to consult an endocrinologist, because the symptoms of these diseases are inherent in many conditions?

– Hypothyroidism is a very difficult disease to diagnose.The clinical symptoms of hypothyroidism are nonspecific and can occur in other pathologies. These are general weakness, fatigue, dry skin, headaches, constipation, swelling of the face and limbs, chilliness. These are fairly general complaints, and often people do not pay attention to them. For headaches, they turn to a neurologist, for constipation – to a gastroenterologist. In women, against the background of hypothyroidism, menstrual irregularities and infertility are often found. Then they go to the gynecologist for help.

Hyperthyroidism is actually the opposite of thyroid dysfunction.Its symptoms are also inherent in many diseases. Patients complain of weight loss, increased excitability, irritability, sweating, tearfulness, poor sleep, internal tremors, trembling of hands and body, increased blood pressure, pronounced palpitations, the elderly may have heart rhythm breakdowns. There are also violations from the genital area (menstrual irregularities), gastrointestinal tract – frequent mushy stools prevail 4-6 times a day. The skin becomes moist, hot to the touch, a noticeable enlargement of the thyroid gland, tremors of the hands and the whole body, changes in the eyes, we call this an “angry look.”The diagnosis is confirmed by high levels of thyroid hormones T4 and T3 and a decrease in thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels. As a rule, these symptoms appear against the background of acute or chronic stress, after an acute viral infection.

Therefore, it is worth paying attention to these symptoms and, if they occur, be sure to consult with an endocrinologist to check the function of the thyroid gland.

– Does it often happen that they are treated for another disease and find problems with the thyroid gland already in a late stage?

– I can’t say that it is often, but it happens, because the symptoms are very general and are not characteristic only of this disease.Some of these patients turn to a dermatologist for dry and flaky skin, women turn to a gynecologist for menstrual irregularities and infertility. It is very difficult to diagnose hypothyroidism in the elderly and elderly people, because they have these symptoms – headache, weakness, fatigue, memory loss – are taken as a manifestation of age-related changes.

– These symptoms make life difficult for the patient. How to get rid of them?

– Treatment of hypothyroidism is carried out with preparations of thyroid hormones (L-thyroxine, eutirox, bagothyrox).If the dose of the drug is selected correctly, then the level of thyroid hormones is normal and the patient feels good, he has no complaints, he can live and work normally, women can easily tolerate pregnancy and give birth to healthy children.

Another thing is when some patients who are prescribed substitution therapy forget to come to the doctor or show up very rarely, some of them themselves cancel the treatment prescribed by the doctor. But the state of the thyroid gland must be monitored constantly, hormonal studies must be carried out, and the dose of hormone preparations must be adjusted.Much depends not only on the doctor, but also on the patient himself.

– And those who receive compensation and feel well, how often should they be checked by an endocrinologist?

– On average, we recommend contacting an endocrinologist once every three to four months, and at least two to three times a year to carry out hormonal studies.

– How to take hormone preparations correctly and how important is it to follow these rules?

– Of course this is important.Thyroid hormone preparations are usually taken in the morning before breakfast. This condition must be observed without fail. If a person missed taking the drug, then the next day you need to take the usual dose, there is no need to increase it.

– Is it true that people with impaired thyroid function are prone to frequent infectious diseases?

– Yes, there is such data. They especially concern children and the elderly. With poorly compensated hypothyroidism, immunity suffers, so such patients are more likely to suffer from colds.You need to strive for compensation as much as possible.

How does the disease affect other organs?

– With hypothyroidism, damage to many organs and systems is observed. The skin turns yellow, there is swelling, dryness and flaking. Many patients suffer from constipation. Most often, with hypothyroidism, there is a rare heart rhythm, low blood pressure, that is, arterial hypotension. In 15% of patients, on the contrary, hypertension is observed, that is, high blood pressure as a manifestation of hypothyroidism.The skeletal system also suffers, articular syndrome of varying severity, osteoporosis, and anemia can be observed. That is, many organs and systems can be affected by hypothyroidism.

– There is a lot of controversy on the Internet about the use of seaweed. Is it useful for thyroid diseases?

– Seaweed contains a large amount of iodine, and we usually advise healthy people to eat iodized salt and seafood.But there is a disease in which excess iodine intake is contraindicated, for example, autoimmune thyroiditis.

In any case, it is necessary to know when to stop in everything. Some patients, when advised to take seafood, eat a can of seaweed a day. This is a large iodine load on the body. It is best to add seaweed to salads, or eaten with other foods.

What other prohibitions exist for this category of patients?

– It is undesirable for patients with thyrotoxicosis to sunbathe, take electrical procedures, consume large amounts of iodine; it is also necessary to minimize stressful situations, because they can worsen the condition.

– Are these diseases curable?

– Unfortunately, hypothyroidism is an incurable disease, patients need constant lifelong substitution therapy. Hyperthyroidism can be cured. The main method is conservative treatment. The patient is prescribed drugs that reduce the function of the thyroid gland and subsequently normalize it. On average, the disease is treated for 1.5-2 years.

If during this time it is not possible to achieve compensation, then the question of the operation is raised.Another option that has recently appeared in our area is treatment with radioactive iodine. In Europe and America, this method prevails over the surgical one; treatment can be carried out either on an outpatient basis or with a minimum hospitalization of 1-2 days, with a good effect achieved.

– Do they resort to surgery only as a last resort?

I wouldn’t say that. There are certain indications for surgery: ineffectiveness of drug treatment for two or more years, large size of the thyroid gland, the presence of complications from the heart and eyes, nodular forms of goiter.

– Is the person completely cured after the operation?

– Most of the patients recover. Some of the operated patients may develop postoperative hypothyroidism, then they take replacement therapy. This is better than constantly being in decompensation with thyrotoxicosis.

– Is there a prevention of thyroid diseases?

– In order to avoid problems with the thyroid gland, it is necessary to carry out iodine prophylaxis.It is divided into several types: mass group and individual. Mass iodine prophylaxis is carried out by adding iodized salt to food. This salt is available to everyone. It is with the help of iodized salt that the occurrence of some endocrine diseases can be prevented.

The second type of prevention is group. It is carried out with the use of iodine preparations – iodomarin, potassium iodide – in different groups that are most susceptible to diseases: children, adolescents, pregnant women, persons with enlarged thyroid glands.

There is also individual prophylaxis, which is carried out in individual patients according to indications.

90,000 May 25-Thyroid Day / Ministry of Health of the Republic of Bashkortostan

The date entered the calendar in 2009, when the European Thyroid Association (ETA) proposed to celebrate the day dedicated to this topic on May 25 at the international level.

The thyroid gland is a symmetrical small organ on our neck that has the shape of a butterfly and is responsible for the proper functioning of the body: mental abilities, sleep and appetite, physical activity, body weight, strength of the bones of the skeleton, the work of the heart and other internal organs, sexual development , skin and hair condition, reproductive health, etc.

The hormones (thyroxine and triiodothyronine), which it secretes, are involved in all important processes of the body – they neutralize free radicals (the main culprits of aging), affect the mental and physical state, help strengthen the immune system, etc. More often, problems arise with impaired gland function. Variants of its increased and decreased function are possible.

According to the World Health Organization, thyroid diseases rank second after diabetes mellitus among endocrine disorders.They affect more than 665 million people in the world. More than 1.5 billion people are at risk.

According to medical statistics, up to a third of the total population of the planet suffers from various diseases of the thyroid gland. Nodules are detected in 30 percent of adults, goiter (enlargement of the gland as a result of iodine deficiency) – in 10-30 percent.

Prevention of hypothyroidism should begin with dietary changes, as certain nutrient deficiencies are a common cause of hypothyroidism.In order for the thyroid gland to produce the optimal amount of hormones, the body must receive “building material”, vitamins and minerals.

It is still possible to restore thyroid function simply by increasing the intake of key nutrients if the first symptoms of hypothyroidism appear: persistent fatigue, decreased cognitive abilities (thinking, memory), low body temperature, hair loss, weight gain, psycho-emotional disorders, feeling unreasonable anxiety.

The best solution for prevention and the mainstay of comprehensive treatment is a nutrient-rich diet.

Here is a list of nine essential nutrients for optimal thyroid function that are often lacking in people’s diets, along with tips on how to increase your intake of each.

Iodine is the # 1 building block for thyroid hormones

Iodine is the most important mineral for thyroid health.It is one of the two main substances that the human body uses to produce thyroid hormones. It supports the conversion of circulating T4 (thyroxine) to free T3 (triiodothyronine). The best food sources of iodides (food version of iodine) are: seaweed, seafood, sea fish.

Tyrosine is the # 2 building material for thyroid hormones

Tyrosine is an amino acid that is the second of the two precursors for the production of thyroid hormones.In the human body, the thyroid gland converts tyrosine into thyroglobulin, and then, attaching one to four iodine atoms to it, creates four forms of thyroid hormones.

It is necessary to fortify the diet with enough high-quality proteins so that the body has the necessary amount of tyrosine for the production of thyroid hormones. It is easily found in red meat, seafood, fish, edible seaweed, chicken.

Selenium for the prevention of hypothyroidism

An extremely important mineral for thyroid health is selenium.It also plays a key role in the conversion of T4 to T3, providing the body with beneficial thyroid hormones. Studies have shown that increasing selenium intake can dramatically lower antibody levels in patients with autoimmune thyroid dysfunction.

A much needed mineral can be obtained by enriching the diet: red meats, liver, chicken, fish, shellfish, turkey, spinach.

Help of B vitamins

The thyroid gland needs the help of various B vitamins.Especially important is cyanocobalamin (vitamin B12), which is a kind of “transporter”: it transports iodine to the thyroid gland for the production of thyroid hormones. It is also needed for the production of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), which signals that more thyroid hormones need to be produced. Its deficiency can lead to the onset and development of pathological symptoms of hypothyroidism, such as chronic fatigue, depression, and decreased cognitive abilities. Studies have shown that vitamin B12 deficiency is common among patients with hypothyroidism, and its prevention prevents the development of hypothyroidism.

The best food sources that give a person B vitamins: leafy greens, cabbage, beets, red meat, liver.

Iron for thyroid health

Without iron, iodide from food cannot be converted into the useful form of iodine. Iron also supports T4 to T3 conversion. Severe iron deficiency or anemia can aggravate the general symptoms of hypothyroidism (chronic fatigue and weakness). Good food sources of iron: Veal, lean pork, poultry, seafood, dark green leafy vegetables.

The important role of omega-3 fatty acids

Essential fatty acids maintain the integrity of the cell wall and assist in the production of active thyroid hormones by serving as their conductors into cells. Several studies have shown an association of omega-3 fatty acid intake with increased T3 absorption.

Omega-3 fatty acids also support good gut health and the integrity of its mucous membranes, which is especially beneficial for patients with autoimmune thyroid disease and associated intestinal disorders.They reduce general inflammation and support the immune system. These polyunsaturated fatty acids can be obtained from marine fish of the following types: tuna, sardines, mackerel, etc.

Vitamin A against hypothyroidism

Retinoids are very important vitamins for the conversion of T4 to T3. Thanks to them, T3 enters the cells and can bind to the thyroid hormone receptors. They support a healthy immune system, which is very important for those suffering from autoimmune thyroid diseases.

Rich in vitamin A, beta-carotene, such foods as orange-colored fruits and vegetables: pumpkin; carrot; apricots, as well as retinoids, are abundant in the liver and cabbage.

The importance of vitamin D for the thyroid gland

Like retinoids, calciferols are essential for the production of T3 cells and support a healthy immune system. This means that the prevention of their deficiency helps to prevent hypothyroidism. The best food sources of calciferols are fatty fish, pork, and fish oil.

Zinc to prevent hypothyroidism

Prevention and treatment of hypothyroidism is not possible with zinc deficiency. It plays an important role in both triggering the production of thyroid hormones and transporting them to cells. It activates thyroid hormone receptors in the “control center” of the endocrine system, the hypothalamus. Thanks to it, the hypothalamus can accurately “measure” the levels of thyroid hormones in order to signal the thyroid gland at what pace to work: to increase or slow down production.And once the production of hormones is complete, zinc helps convert them to their active form. You can get more zinc by including red meat, liver, chicken, spinach in the diet.

Press Service of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Bashkortostan

Nutrition for changes in the thyroid gland (Pages Contents

– Reprol2000

🧏‍♀️ We are used to hearing that autoimmune diseases are malfunctions in the immune system, in which their own immune cells attack their own organ, the causes of which are unknown.And if it is not clear why they arise, then it is impossible to influence their occurrence, the flow. It remains only to endure and accept. But this is not the case!
~
✅ 🔬 It turns out that most autoimmune diseases, including the thyroid gland, depend on our diet.
“Just food? How so? I don’t eat anything harmful, but there is a disease! ”, You may object.

‼ ️🔬According to numerous studies, the risk of autoimmune disease is 1/3 dependent on genetic predisposition, and on 2/3 🧬 on diet, lifestyle and environmental factors (epigenetics).

✅ 🥗 It has been scientifically proven that eating and avoiding certain foods helps not only to influence the body’s immune response to its own organ, but also to go into permanent remission. This is certainly great news for anyone suffering from autoimmune thyroiditis (AIT) and thyroid changes. The autoimmune protocol contains not only dietary recommendations, but also the main factors in the development of this group of diseases.

🧏‍♀️‼ ️4 factors for the development of chronic and autoimmune diseases:

  1. Nutrients.For the full functioning of the immune system, you need an abundance of vitamins, trace elements, minerals, amino acids and fatty acids. Their deficiency and imbalance causes the progression of the disease. The consumption of certain foods allows you to replenish the body with the necessary substances.
  2. Healthy intestines. The permeability of the intestine and the violation of its microflora are the main triggers of autoimmune diseases. The foods the protocol recommends maintain healthy levels of beneficial microorganisms.Foods that damage or destroy the intestinal mucosa are completely excluded, while anti-inflammatory food groups are included in the diet.
  3. Hormones. What we eat affects our hormonal and immune systems. Hormones are influenced by sleep duration, physical activity and lifestyle.
  4. Regulation of the immune system. It is achieved by restoring the intestinal microflora, its protective barrier, a sufficient amount of nutrients and the normalization of hormones.
What is and what is not?

✅ 🥗 We have come to the most important topic – what to eat and what not. All healthy foods are allowed: grass-fed meats, fish and seafood, gluten-free cereals (buckwheat, wild rice, quinoa), avocados, cruciferous vegetables (arugula, broccoli, cabbage), mushrooms, olive oil, seasonal fruits, dark berries, fermented products, as well as all vegetables, except nightshade.

❌❗️Ban on: legumes, refined sugar and oils, eggs, nuts, seeds, nightshade vegetables (potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant), gluten-containing products (wheat, flour, and flour products, oatmeal, couscous, fast food , confectionery), alcohol, sweeteners, thickeners, etc.

🗒‼ ️ For autoimmune thyroiditis, we recommend:

  • Eat foods containing selenium;
  • To control the level of Vit D and, if necessary, be sure to take it, since AIT causes its pronounced deficiency; limit exposure to the sun – this provokes an increase in antibodies to the thyroid gland;
  • Search for dietary supplements that stimulate the immune system – be sure to consult an endocrinologist before using them;
  • Monitor ferritin and serum iron levels;

🧏‍♀️🔬 Check the analysis for lactose tolerance – since it is with AIT that most often it is not broken down.

👩🏻‍⚕️👌 When faced with chronic and autoimmune diseases, the most important thing is not to give up, but remember that a lot depends on us! Good health to you!

Why is seaweed useful and should you include kelp in your daily menu?

Some people consider sea kale to be almost a panacea that helps to get rid of many diseases. Let’s see how this statement is true.

– Seaweed is a healthy edible algae characterized by a rich set of trace elements and nutrients.Algae is squeezed out of sea water, and then processed into an acceptable form for human consumption, – emphasized Svetlana Galushko, an endocrinologist at the Regional Endocrinological Dispensary .

– Algae contains a huge amount of iodine – this is what ordinary people know. What else is it good for?

– In addition to this microelement, kelp has a full set of macro- and microelements, such as phosphorus, sodium, iron, magnesium, iodine, it contains vitamins of group B, E, A, C and D.Alginates (natural enterosorbents) help the body get rid of toxins, ions, radionuclides and disease-causing bacteria. Sterols, for example, prevent the accumulation of excess cholesterol and thin the blood, thereby reducing blood clots.

There are dietary fibers in seaweed (they are also pectins), which help the digestive system and gastrointestinal tract, and fatty acids slow down the development of atherosclerosis.

And that’s not all. Algae contains proteins and the most useful amino acids for the body, high molecular weight polysaccharides.

– For what diseases is seaweed especially useful?

– For the treatment and prevention of cancer and thyroid diseases, vitamin deficiency, anemia, obesity, constipation. This does not mean that its use will replace pills and medicines. But in the presence of these diseases, it is recommended to use kelp, which has immunostimulating and anti-sclerotic effects. So, scientists explain the low incidence of breast cancer in Japanese women by the constant presence of kelp in their diet.As for iodine, the need for it is especially felt by children, people engaged in active mental and physical activity, pregnant women, as well as patients with dysfunction of the thyroid gland – hypothyroidism (organic iodine from seaweed is better absorbed than synthetic iodine-containing preparations). Due to the high content of bromine and B vitamins, the use of kelp soothes and brings the nervous system back to normal, increases mental and physical performance. Seaweed is widely used among the inhabitants of the Far East in the treatment of gout and other rheumatic diseases.For preventive purposes, it is enough to eat 40 g of kelp per day.

By the way, if you include seaweed in your daily menu, then excess cholesterol will cease to be deposited on the walls of blood vessels and will be excreted from the body.

In addition, kelp contains such a useful substance as laminin, which normalizes blood pressure. It is not for nothing that seaweed was recognized as one of the most useful products for prolonging youth and longevity.

– Is this product good for everyone?

– Kelp is not indicated for those who are allergic to iodine.It is not recommended to eat or take it in powder form for pregnant women suffering from urticaria, rhinitis, acne, furunculosis. You can not eat seaweed for people suffering from nephritis, tuberculosis, nephrosis and other kidney diseases. Taboo on its use in patients with hyperthyroidism (thyrotoxicosis).