Sluggish thyroid function is a common cause of unintended weight gain. The thyroid gland, a small butterfly-shaped endocrine gland in the throat, secretes hormones that control the body’s metabolism process. The underactive thyroid gland lowers the body’s basal metabolic rate, which impairs the body’s ability to break down carbohydrates, proteins and fats for energy production. Because of the low metabolic rate, people with underactive thyroid gland experience excessive weight gain and have difficulty in losing the unwanted body fats. However, with appropriate modifications in diet and lifestyle even overweight or obese people with underactive thyroid gland can lose weight.
5 Ways To Lose Weight With An Underactive Thyroid
1. Avoid Sugar And Refined Carbohydrates
Sugar and refined carbohydrates contribute to excess weight gain in people with hypothyroidism. They are known to trigger adrenal stress that worsens the thyroid function. Furthermore, refined foods contain certain chemicals that obstruct absorption of nutrients essential for the healthy functioning of the thyroid gland. However, as carbohydrate is a major source of energy, replace the refined carbohydrates and sugar with complex carbohydrate.
2. Consume Healthy Protein
Low protein diet is known to affect the normal functioning of the thyroid gland. To stimulate the thyroid gland and to lose weight, add healthy sources of protein such as lean meat, fish and legumes to your weight loss diet.
3. Eat Sea Vegetables
Dietary sources of iodine such as kelp or seaweed help in stimulating the thyroid gland and assist in weight loss. Furthermore, they contain silicon, copper and zinc, minerals that are essential for maintaining the thyroid function.
4. Consume Anti-Inflammatory Foods
To improve the thyroid function and lose the extra weight, add foods with anti-inflammatory properties to your daily diet. Anti-inflammatory nutrients help in maintaining the normal immune response of the body, thereby reducing abnormal immune reactions that affect the function of the thyroid gland. Foods that are known for their powerful anti-inflammatory properties include fatty fish, green leafy vegetables, berries, tomatoes and olive oil.
To lose weight and stimulate the thyroid gland, start exercising. Although, initially exhaustion because of low metabolism acts as an obstacle, over time you will start enjoying the benefits of exercising. Twenty minutes of light to moderate intensity exercises, thrice a week, can help people with underactive thyroid gland.