Hypothyroidism, also known as low thyroid or underactive thyroid, is one of the common endocrine disorders. In this condition, the problem is the inadequate amounts of thyroid hormone produced by the thyroid gland, which leads to symptoms like weight gain, fatigue, and depression.
Causes and Complications
Hypothyroidism has several causes. According to Mayo Clinic, these include autoimmune diseases like Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, intake of anti-thyroid medications and lithium, thyroid surgery, radiation therapy, congenital diseases like defective or absent thyroid gland, pituitary disorders like presence of tumors, pregnancy (postpartum hypothyroidism), and iodine deficiency.
According to the publication, risk factors for hypothyroidism include being female more than 60 years old, presence of an autoimmune disease, a family history of thyroid disease, presence of autoimmune diseases like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, treatment with anti-thyroid medications or radioactive iodine, receipt of radiation to the neck or upper chest, thyroid surgery, pregnancy or childbirth within the last six months.
Hypothyroidism also has several complications like goiter, heart problems, mental health issues, peripheral neuropathy, myxedema, infertility, and birth defects, as per the publication.
Signs and Symptoms
Hypothyroidism presents a number of signs and symptoms. According to Endocrine Web, the symptoms of the condition include weight gain, fatigue, coarse and dry hair, weakness, dry and rough pale skin, cold intolerance, hair loss, muscle cramps, depression, constipation, memory loss, irritability, decreased libido, and abnormal menstrual cycles.
While medical management through synthetic thyroid hormones is done to resolve hypothyroidism, home remedies can also be done to manage the condition.
Coconut oil is one of the known remedies for hypothyroidism. According to Top 10 Home Remedies, the oil contains medium-chain fatty acids, which enhance the function of the thyroid gland. Coconut oil helps stimulate boost energy and metabolism, along with raise the body’s temperature. As per the publication, coconut oil is used for cooking and two tablespoons of coconut oil can be added to milk, which can be drunken in the morning along with breakfast. Moreover, coconut oil can also be added to a smoothie.
Reduce Carbohydrate Intake
Lowering one’s carbohydrate intake is another remedy for hypothyroidism. According to Dr. Axe’s official website, high intake of carbohydrates increases estrogen levels, which puts adverse impact on the thyroid. As per the publication, the person should consume healthy fats that help promote hormone balance. Examples are coconut milk, coconut oil, avocado, wild salmon, beef, flaxseeds, chia, and hemp seeds.
Increase Protein Intake
Boosting protein consumption is another way to manage hypothyroidism. According to Mind Body Green, protein transports thyroid hormone to the body tissues, which promotes thyroid function. Examples of protein-rich food sources include meat, eggs, legumes, nuts, nut butter, and quinoa. As per the publication, one exemption is soy, as it can interfere with cell receptors in the endocrine system.
The severity of hypothyroidism is far from that of tuberculosis’ or cancer’s; however, it still affects a person’s activities of daily living and total health. Thus, it is vital to seek medical consult for assessment, planning, and intervention.