Hashimoto’s thyroid disease is the leading cause of underactive thyroid. In fact, it is estimated that 90% of hypothyroid disease is actually the autoimmune form, called Hashimoto’s. This causes the immune system to attack the thyroid gland eventually causing the gland to “burn itself out” and no longer being able to produce thyroid hormone. In many cases this can be going on for years before it is able to be detected in bloodwork. You will most likely need to take thyroid hormone replacement medication but that is not the end of the story. What you eat, how you sleep and your thoughts are all critical in your healing.

You may have heard about the gluten free craze going on. But for people with Hashimoto’s disease, this is actually a very critical piece to slowing the damage to your thyroid gland and even stopping the progression. Gluten has been found to “mimic” thyroid cells. In other words, the immune system has a hard time telling the difference between gluten and thyroid cells. When the immune system is turned on to attack the thyroid, it exacerbates the reaction when gluten is present, even in the tiniest amounts.

There may be other foods that may need to be avoided temporarily or even long term. Dairy can also be a big offender to people with hypothyroidism. There are a few options to find out if you are sensitive to foods. One way is to do an elimination diet. This is when you take the most common offending foods out and eat a limited diet for a period of time. Then slowly, you add 1 food in every 4 days, noting any reaction you may have. Another great option is to do a simple food sensitivity test. This can be done with 1 drop of blood that is sent off to the lab. It takes a lot of frustration out of the equation and is my preferred method.

One key to healing your body from thyroid disease and any other ailment is to eat whole, organic, pastured foods. The chemicals, preservatives and toxins that are in our food and environment are making us fat and sick. We are becoming mineral depleted. When we don’t have the proper mineral balance, our “electrical systems” and energy powerhouses fail us. Another critical assessment in getting the body back in balance is Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis. Let food be Thy Medicine!

Michele Slezak is the owner of Michele Slezak Holistics, LLC. She is a Certified Holistic Nutritionist, focusing on helping women with autoimmune disease regain their health through diet and lifestyle. She offers Hair Mineral Analysis Testing to customize an individual plan for health. She can be contacted at Empower Wellness Studio.