It’s time for another Ask The Nutritionist article. You ask, I answer! Together with CAP Beauty, we explore your food curiosities and dive deep into the world of nutrition, macro and micro. This month, readers want to know -
Meredith, please tell us, what foods and practices are supportive for fluctuating TSH levels and good at keeping them in check?
First of all, I recommend being under the care of a functional medicine doctor, hormone specialist, or endocrinologist. The thyroid is a very delicate hormone gland governing many systems in the body and must be supported properly.
As I work in a holistic way with all my clients, I've highlighted other practices for strengthening thyroid function as they are of equal importance for a healthy and happy thyroid.
Seaweed is rich in minerals and iodine, which we need for healthy thyroid functioning. Some of my favorites to add to salads are nori and dulse. Kelp is also great when added to vegetable soups. If you feel like dining out, the seaweed salads at Souen in Soho are clean and delicious. Note: Those bright green seaweed salads at Japanese restaurants we all love? They are often filled with refined sugar, dyes, chemicals, and MSG! Steer clear!
Healthforce's Green Protein Alchemy Magic Mint is a supportive go to. Two spoonfuls a day offers you a complete whole food protein. Plus, the Spirulina and Chlorella protect your body from radiation and are loaded with a full-spectrum array of cleansing and non-toxic healing vitamins, minerals, chlorophyll and phytonutrients for ultimate support of your entire body, including incredible workout recovery and immune function.
High quality water. Generally speaking, most of the tap water in our country contains significant amounts of chlorine, fluoride and heavy metals. All of which can compromise thyroid health. Install high quality water filters (for your drinking and shower water) and skip the tap water. There are excellent countertop water purifying systems out there as well. We recommend the WALTER.
Home environment and air quality. How’s your air quality? Most often we forget that indoor air can be even more toxic than being outside. (Yes, even congested city air can be cleaner!) Mold and chemical exposure affect the whole body, including the thyroid. Purchase a high quality air purifier (Rabbit Air is my favorite) and make sure to have plants in your home that clean the air, too. I love the Snake plant (official name: Sansevieria trifasciata), it’s an air purifying star.
Blue light exposure and EMFs. We are all bombarded with EMF (Electromagnetic Field) and blue light exposure from computers, smartphones and tablets. Protect your thyroid by reducing blue light on all your screens, put all your devices on Airplane Mode before bed, clear your bedroom of all devices and shut down Wi-Fi while you sleep, especially if the modem is in your bedroom. EMF shielding garments are also available to place over your neck for extra protection. You can dive deeper on this topic here.
The power of the sun. This is the most important of all my recommendations. Life on earth is powered by the sun and we must relearn how to use it intelligently. Reset your circadian biology and offset blue light exposure every morning by watching the sunrise (more challenging for us who live in NYC, but still possible).
A few recommended practices:
Kundalini Yoga offers an array of amazing kriyas, like sound mantras, breathing techniques, meditation practices and specific yogic exercises that help strengthen and heal the thyroid.
Hatha Yoga, especially Fish Pose (Matsyasana), can be very beneficial.
Meditation reduces stress when practiced regularly, which will absolutely support the thyroid.
This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek advice from your health provider before altering your routine.