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It’s been a little over two months since I was diagnosed with a thyroid disease — hypothyroidism. And while I do feel better mentally after two months of treatment, physically I’m still not 100% there. I still don’t have all my energy back, I am still gaining weight (though not as fast as I was — and I’m sure the holidays didn’t help with that), and there is still an overall feeling of “meh” everywhere in my body.

After I went for my two month check-up, tests revealed that my thyroid levels are still not in the normal range, and after I was given a vague “every body reacts differently to medication” answer from the nurse on the phone, I decided I needed to investigate this disease a bit more on my own. I sensed my doctor wasn’t telling me enough, and since many people suffer from thyroid disease, I figured the internet may have more information on the matter.

So I went searching.

And what I found surprised me. Many foods, I discovered (this article and this article go into some detail), can interfere with your thyroid hormones if consumed in large quantities or consumed raw.

Could I be over-consuming wonderful veggies like spinach and kale?

Soy products, for example, can hinder the absorption of thyroid hormones — and it doesn’t matter if you consume them raw or cooked. I eat a ton of tofu and soy products, primarily edamame for snacks, so this was a bit of an eye-opener for me. I guess I won’t be eating entire bags of edamame in one sitting anymore, nor will I be eating a lot of tofurkey sausage and tofu stir fries…

Gluten has been found to trigger thyroid autoimmune responses. So, aka, almost everything I cook has gluten in it. After reading up even more about it recently, many people have seen improvement by moving to an all gluten free diet. For me that seems like an incredibly difficult undertaking, and not all research agrees that you need go to gluten free to feel better. I’m currently on the fence about this. But regardless, I’m going to switch up to healthier grains such as quinoa instead of just brown rice.

Cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli, cauliflower, and brussels sprouts can mess up thyroid function if eaten raw. Other greens like kale and spinach eaten raw have shown interference, too. But if they’re cooked it nukes the effects. I usually eat these vegetables cooked, but have been known to chomp on raw broccoli and hummus on numerous occasions and also eat a ton of spinach salads for lunch.

Peanuts and other nuts have also been known to interfere….which means my incredibly high dose of peanuts and peanut butter in my diet need to be reduced.

Aspartame is also pretty bad for thyroids, but it’s also pretty bad for your body in general. This I already knew, but will give me much more motivation to kick my Diet Coke habit. Also my gum chewing habit.

Coffee, although isn’t as bad as some of the other things on the list, since most people take thyroid medicine in the morning, and coffee is also had in the morning, it can mess up with the absorption, and I’ve also noticed an increase in the amount of palpitations I have lately, so I’m already in the process of weaning myself off of all caffeinated beverages.

So I feel a bit deflated after discovering that although I didn’t think I had many unhealthy eating habits (besides my Cheez it addiction), my eating habits may indeed have at least something to do with the way I’m feeling. And although I’m not a doctor, changing my eating habits will at the very least not hurt me. If I’m already at the bottom, where else can I go from here but up?

But I extended my research even further, to discover what kinds of foods may actually help me in the long-run:

Beans, Lentils, Split Peas are all good, and I consume a lot of them right now anyway.

My favorite fruits and veggies are all OK, like avocados, apples, bananas, grapes, pumpkin, squash, peppers, zucchinis, carrots, mushrooms. Generally, all veggies are OK, even the “bad” ones, as long as they’re cooked and you don’t do the whole eat-so-much-of-one-veggie-you-turn-into-one thing.

Foods rich in Omega-3s, like salmon and sardines. I really dislike sardines, and also don’t really like salmon….but I can also take fish oil, too — and there are other sources of Omega-3s I can get elsewhere.

Cheese is OK, and goat cheese is not forbidden (I am so relieved..because….CHEESE.)

Meat and Eggs So maybe, finally, I’ll give into buying more meat…beef stew is one of my favorite meals…. ;)

All-in-all I think I have some adjustments to make. I’m well aware that with all things, improvement is slow, but changing a few eating habits here and there certainly won’t hurt me. This also means that CW will be getting a little face lift. More interesting and diverse recipes to satisfy my needs and yours … and hey, this is actually a good excuse to get me out of my current recipe rut and expand to try new ones :)

Plus, maybe I’ll lose 5 of these 10 pounds I’ve gained. (A girl can dream!)

‘Til next time…..

Note: I am absolutely, 100% NOT a pro on thyroid disorders. I’m not a doctor. I have never done professional research on this outside of my personal investigation of my own personal disease. If you suspect you have a thyroid disease, please see a doctor and get treated. I’m switching up my diet in addition to the treatment I already receive from my doctor.