Hypothyroidism, also known as underactive thyroid or low thyroid is a common disorder of the endocrine system and it occurs when the thyroid gland (located in the front lower part of one's neck) does not produce enough thyroid hormones.
Not having enough thyroid hormones means slowing down of body processes, which in turn means that the body creates less energy, thus, affecting the body's metabolism adversely.
Hypothyroidism is more common in women than men and people over the age of 60 are said to be commonly affected by it.
Some of the causes of hypothyroidism are:
1) Too little iodine in the diet.
2) Hashimoto's thyroiditis, an autoimmune condition in which the immune system attacks the thyroid gland, thus, causing inflammation.
3) Less common causes include previous treatment with radioactive iodine, injury to anterior pituitary gland, certain medications, lack of a functioning thyroid at birth or a previous thyroid surgery.
Some of the common symptoms of hypothyroidism are fatigue, increased sensitivity to cold, constipation, dry skin, muscle cramps, hoarse voice, sudden weight gain, depression, puffy face and brittle fingernails and hair.
However, if diagnosed with hypothyroidism, following certain home remedies can also prove to be useful in treating the disease. Let us have a look at some of the best home remedies for hypothyroidism.
Ginger is a good source of zinc, magnesium and potassium and has anti-inflammatory properties which in turn helps improve thyroid functioning. Ginger can be added in soups, teas and other dishes.
2) Fish Oil
Fish oils are rich in omega-3 fatty acids which help in fighting inflammation caused by hypothyroidism and in increasing immunity. Fish oils should be consumed only after consultation with your doctor.
3) Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar may also help in treating hypothyroidism as it helps in detoxification, restores acid-alkaline balance, facilitates weight loss and helps regulate hormones. Mix apple cider vinegar and honey in a glass of warm water and consume to treat hypothyroidism.
4) Coconut Oil
Medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil help improve thyroid functioning and also stimulate metabolism and boost energy. They also help in raising the basal body temperature which is important for people suffering from hypothyroidism.
5) Milk Products
Dairy products, like cottage cheese, yogurt and cheese contain essential fats and other essential micronutrients that are helpful for the proper functioning of the thyroid gland.
The active compounds of guggul, a herb that comes from the gum resin of an Indian tree called Commiphora Mukul, are said to stimulate the thyroid functions. It also has anti-inflammatory, anti-obesity and cholesterol-lowering benefits. Guggul can be taken as a supplement only after proper consultation with the doctor.
Asparagus contains an important antioxidant called glutathione which is a combination of essential amino acids and is said to help in treating hypothyroidism.
Garlic's rich antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties help decrease swelling of the neck due to enlargement of the thyroid gland. Consumption of raw garlic will help reduce hypothyroidism.
Red onions help in treating hypothyroidism as they are antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, antiviral and help improve cholesterol balance.
Nuts are loaded with protein that can provide relief from hypothyroidism. Add various types of nuts in your diet on a daily basis to treat hypothyroidism.
Beans contain proteins, antioxidants, complex carbohydrates, fibre and loads of vitamins and minerals that help in restoring energy, which is beneficial as hypothyroidism often leaves you feeling drained. Consume soups, salads and stews containing beans and feel energetic.