Hypothyroidism is a condition in which patient’s metabolism is slowed down. As a result, most people with it are subject to gaining excess weight. Many patients will resort to various “wonder” supplements which promise quick weight loss and long term weight control. This is hardly possible, as once the metabolic process of calorie burning is compromised by a condition such as hypothyroidism, the only effective way to control your weight is to follow a hypothyroidism-friendly diet and exercise.
Hypothyroidism Diet for Weight Loss
There are no simple and easy diets which would solve this problem, but a good discipline and readiness to change dietary habits would go a long way.
The first thing you need to know once you get diagnosed with hypothyroidism is that your organism is no longer ready to process “fast” burning nutrients like white sugar, white flour and white fat.
You should replace all those with foods of wholemeal foods, limited amounts of brown sugar, and cold pressed vegetable oils (primarily olive and linen oil).
Fructose is an example of “simple” sugars. It is good to avoid large quantities of very sweet fruits like bananas or plums. You should eat more sour cherries, cranberries and lemon. Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts and cereals like barley, oats and quinoa are a good source of carbohydrates.
Fish, and other foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are also highly recommended. Fatty acids improve cholesterol balance in your organism, raising levels of “good” cholesterol (HDL) and lowering the “bad” one (LDL).
Your main source of protein, besides fish can be boiled poultry, egg whites and skimmed milk or yoghurt.
Even though your thyroid gland is affected by this condition, it should still work to some extent and to get the best from it you need to provide it with essential minerals and nutrients. You can also always opt for foods rich in selenium, zinc and iodine. These three micronutrients are essential for proper work of your thyroid gland.
You should have more small meals over the course of a day, instead of three or four large ones.
Six meals a day is ideal, with no more than two containing carbohydrates, and one or two rich in protein. All other meals should be based on fresh fruits or vegetables, nuts and cereals. All meals should be relatively equal in amount, though they may differ in actual calories.
An example of a good diet for people with hypothyroidism may look like this:
- Breakfast: a cup of yoghurt or skimmed milk
- Snack: nuts (a small cup of mixed nuts)
- Lunch: soup without noodles, a piece of boiled meat or fish.
- Snack: fresh salad
- Dinner: boiled vegetables with olive oil.
- Snack: fresh cranberries or sour cherries.
The next day you may switch up your meals. For example, you can have meat in the evening, and nuts in the afternoon. It’s basically important not to have large meals when you are trying to lose weight with hypothyroidism.
You should avoid intensive exercises. Moderate ones, like walking fast, riding a bike or water aerobics are great. You can also run or swim, but not every day and not excessively. You should get the best results if you exercise early in the morning as then your body would burn calories more effectively and your body will remain warm throughout the day, consuming even more calories with each activity.