Underactive Thyroid Causing Trouble? Avoid 6 Foods

Imbalances in thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) levels can be the result of poor lifestyle, food deficiencies or certain genetic stresses which affect calorie distribution system in the body. The butterfly-shaped gland located at the base of the neck produces too little or too much of the hormone leading to hypo or hyperthyroidism. The increase or decrease in the secretion of T3 and T4 hormones by the thyroid gland are affected by TSH which is produced by the pituitary gland. 

In cases of hypothyroidism, the thyroid gland underproduces the required amount of the hormone for a healthy metabolic process. At such times, there is an increased tendency to gain weight, suffer from constipation, experience mood swings and develop a heightened risk of heart disease. It is important to consult a medical practitioner for dietary advice and proper medication. Along with that, here are some foods that can be avoided to manage hypothyroidism:


Breads made from processed flours have gluten which is difficult to absorb. It puts excessive pressure on the digestive system and can be an irritant for the small intestine. Gluten-free options like whole-grain breads and rotis can be had instead to regulate bowel movements and contain thyroid imbalances.

Fried And Fatty Food

Fatty foods like butter, cheeses, oils and fried foods like chips, fries, pakodas and fried chicken are best avoided if you are suffering from hypothyroidism. This is because, it takes longer for the body to process fats which is harmful when metabolism has already slowed down due to an underactive thyroid. Recent studies have also indicated that fatty foods can restrict the body's ability to effectively absorb thyroid medication.


Just like fatty foods, refined sugar is also harmful for those with hypothyroidism. With an already heightened risk of weight-gain and mood swings which make it hard to exercise regularly, avoiding sugars is the best way to prevent an overload of calories. Slowed metabolism also hinders the body's capacity to process sugar quickly.


Coffee is best avoided particularly by those who are on thyroid medication. Caffeine can block the absorption of the thyroid hormone which is being ingested through medicines or replacement therapy and completely counter the effects of medical treatment. Coffee can be had 30 minutes after taking medication but it is best to avoid it altogether.


Hypothyroidism increases the risk of developing elevated blood pressure. Processed and packed foods like fruit juices, chips, dips and other goodies have large amounts of sodium which can lead to a spike in blood pressure. Clean eating is essential for those suffering from hypothyroidism, which effectively means avoiding all sodium-loaded packaged foods.


One of the strictest no-no's for those with hypothyroidism is alcohol. Heavy drinking can completely wreck thyroid hormone secretion and can be extremely toxic for the thyroid gland. It also restricts the body's ability to absorb whatever little hormone is secreted, lower metabolism and increase the risk of weight-gain.