Friday, November 18th, 2016

What exactly is thyroid and how to deal with it

Rajkumari Tankha | November 18, 2016 11:54 am Print
Some of the overt symptoms that a person having a dysfunctional thyroid include feeling of exhaustion, heightened anxiety, huge loss or gain of appetite, lack of interest in sexual activity, dry skin, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, excessive weight gain or loss, hair loss, imbalance in menstrual cycle, trouble sleeping and difficulty in concentrating.
Fast foods leads to high blood pressure, high cholesterol and and later on thyroid

You must have heard people talking about having thyroid problem. What exactly is it?

Thyroid is a small gland located in the neck region which is responsible for secreting hormones that regulate growth and development of body. When someone says that he/she has a thyroid problem, it means that either the gland is under-performing or over-performing; and both the conditions are bad. Under-secretion and over-secretion of thyroid hormone leads to many health problems.

Some of the overt symptoms that a person having a dysfunctional thyroid include feeling of exhaustion, heightened anxiety, huge loss or gain of appetite, lack of interest in sexual activity, dry skin, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, excessive weight gain or loss, hair loss, imbalance in menstrual cycle, trouble sleeping and difficulty in concentrating.

We give here you some tips to keep the functioning of thyroid gland at optimum levels:

1. Do not go for fat-less or low-fat diet. Consume enough fat. Fat is important for regulating hormones and normal brain function. People who go for low-fat diets are at a greater risk of having low levels of thyroid hormone.

2. Do not consume too much of Soy products. The reason why soy is preferred is because it is low in calories and carbohydrates but perpetually consuming low-calorie and low-carb food may interfere with the release of hormones and digestion. Further, iodine plays an important role in proper thyroid function and too much soy from milk and tofu can block iodine absorption from food.

3. Avoid having a hectic daily schedule. Do not take up more tasks than you can accomplish. Keep enough time for play, relaxation and meditation in your daily schedule. Just as it is important to work, it is also important to rejuvenate the body.

4. Avoid diet sodas. Diet soda may help you control weight while giving you energy, but understand that it is full of chemicals that can create a toxic environment in the body. Diet soda also contains fluoride which blocks receptors for thyroid hormone.

5. Quit alcohol. At least do not make it a daily habit. Drinking alcohol may lead to blood sugar fluctuations, causing stress on the thyroid, adrenal and pituitary glands which secret hormones that control vital systems in the body. Consuming alcohol daily affects the endocrine system negatively, leading to it becoming dysfunctional, creating a situation whereby you are more likely to become fat, fatigued and depressed.

6. Avoid consuming too much vegetable oils and fats. Thyroid gland relies on healthy fats and cholesterol to release the right amount of hormones for the whole body. Consuming vegetable oils such as margarine, can contribute to leaky gut syndrome which causes undigested food particles to get into the blood stream. This undigested food may then over-activate the immune system. As a result, the body starts to attack small organs without having a good defense system such as the thyroid gland.

7. Do not consume too much gluten. People with thyroid problems are likely to be gluten intolerant. Gluten is a group of proteins found in wheat, semolina, rye, barley etc.

8. Do not consume too much sugar. Refined sugar depletes vitamins and minerals, the building blocks to a healthy thyroid, strong adrenals and sufficient metabolism.

Rajkumari Tankha
Rajkumari Tankha
The writer is a Delhi-based journalist. She has previously worked for Ministry of I & B (Govt of India), Hindustan Times and Special Audience Publications.
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