One in eight women across the U.S. are experiencing a silent epidemic. My husband, Dr. John A. Robinson, and I share a combined 20 years of experience helping patients find their voice on the path to optimal thyroid health.
Twenty million Americans—mostly women—are living day to day with thyroid disease. Experts at the American Thyroid Association estimate more than half are unaware of their condition. Dr. Robinson and I developed the ThyroZone system for accurate diagnosis and effective treatment customized by listening to patients. We’ve learned that many conditions commonly linked to women’s reproductive function—from irregular periods to fertility issues—actually stem from the thyroid. Correcting a thyroid imbalance first can simplify treatment, preventing misdiagnoses and unnecessary prescriptions. Listen to your body, and try these tips to proactively manage your thyroid health.
Stress affects your entire body, especially your thyroid. Cortisol and adrenaline, your stress hormones, can lower your metabolic rate and interfere with thyroid hormone production.
Regular meditation has the direct ability to lower and balance cortisol levels, benefiting your thyroid gland. Five minutes a day can go a long way. You can start by just clearing your mind and breathing in an out. If that’s not your thing, head to the bedroom: releasing feel-good hormones through intimacy and orgasm fight stress, and a good night’s sleep goes a long way.
We encounter environmental toxins and endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in everyday life, like Bisphenol A (BPA) in plastic bottles, triclosan in anti-bacterial soaps and phthalates in beauty products. Ditch the toxic accessories, then start an elimination diet. Try using a journal to keep track of how your body responds to ingredients that commonly cause allergic and inflammatory reactions. Choose sprouted breads to avoid gluten and lectin. Drink sparkling water instead of soda, which can contain thyroid-inhibiting bromide. Lower isoflavones by trading tofu and TVP for fermented soy, like tempeh and miso.
Empty calories won’t do your thyroid any favors, but it is important to include healthy fats in your daily diet(think wild salmon and grass-fed beef for omega-3 fatty acids). Try the thyroid-friendly Traditional Ancestral Diet for meal-prep guidance. This low-carb/high-fat model inspired the popular Paleo and Keto diets. It can reduce your intake of EDCs while letting your body absorb fat-soluble vitamins and essential minerals like selenium, magnesium and iodine. While pregnant and nursing women require higher levels of iodine, but most adults can get their daily dose by seasoning food with half a teaspoon of iodized salt.
At the Hormone Zone, we recommend high-intensity, short-duration exercise to thyroid patients. Start small with intermittent bursts of high-intensity pedaling on a stationary bike or by going for a power walk and adding in sprints. Weight lifters can freshen up routines by adding compound movements like squats or overhead presses. Keep your exercise time to 40 minutes or less.
I’ve found that many patients who present with thyroid issues share a feeling of not being heard, or that their words feel stuck in their throat. Open that pathway by speaking your truth. A suppressed voice will not only lead to suppressing joy and your quality of life, it can actually lead to pathological thyroid issues. Make sure that you not only feel well but also feel well-heard. Empower yourself by reading “ThyroZone: Real Thyroid Solutions for Better Health & Better Living.” Dr. Robinson and I wrote this book especially for our patients to provide answers on their thyroid health.
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