Thyroid Disorders Community
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393685 tn?1425816122

A Thyroid member EXPERIMENT for the NEW YEAR - Can we do this as a group?

I'd like to attempt a forum experiment with diet changes to see if changing certain things we consume can in fact - help us as individual thyroid patients.

Would you consider coming on board with me on this?

In the little time I have had lately to really dig deep on the diet changes (particularly gluten-free and zero sugar) I was thinking WE could try this as a forum community and track our personal results. Maybe both weight and thyroid results.

This would be a long haul of diligent work - about a 6 mth commitment but offering ourselves in diet changing to see if weight loss and thyroid wellness could be achieved with this may be something we could try. It certainly would be a tracking tool to see if this "could" be something of study if many community members made a committment to try it?

I played around with gluten-free with it myself last year and actually had significate weight loss - I felt thyroid well regardless but now that I have returned to "bad" diet choices due to working and not paying attention to what I am shoving in my mouth to eat :(   - I recently went to the doctor and gained a dredded 5 pounds in 4 short weeks!

Sadly, I am NOT happy I gained this weight. AND - looking back I may had felt better thyroid-wise when I was really trying to stick to the basic eating I had done a while back.

I know this gluten idea is not backed at all for thyroid, and I certainly don't want to roar the board in this, I do find it interesting to entertain a personal wellness record just trying a basic diet to see what each of our outcomes may be.

What are the highlights of this gluten-free / supplement basics to make this diet choice to see?

There's 2 things that I see need to be blended if we would give it our best shot to know how each of us respond.  

1. an entirely strick diet of no gluten
2. a low glycemic-index diet similiar to what diabetic patients do in their nutrition intake

To make it clear on potential participators, this would NOT be an alternative to what your doctors are treating you with. This is not an elimination of medications but just a simple choice to eat simply and avoid some things in addition to what your treatment plan is.

*** And, of course, please be sure this is okay with your personal physician for you ****

I am hoping we can come together on this and try it. Maybe even a standard exercise plan of kegals or mild walking commitment with it to see if we boost something to track our wellness, good or bad.

What do you think? I personally am going to go back to it January 1st and this time really track my progress. Can you do this with me?

65 Responses
393685 tn?1425816122
PS - on the kegals...

I know we have male gender here so.....just so you are aware.. that was only example - not part of the program.
219241 tn?1413541365
Men should do Kegel exercises too to help maintain their erections. It's not just for women.

Are you going to ask MedHelp to do a tracker for this study of health and wellbeing?
Avatar universal
Just a note, I went gluten free for two months this past summer.  Not only was it an expensive way of life, especially when you have 3 kids and a husband and then need to make separate meals for yourself and them but also did not one bit alter my TSH, nor did I lose any additional weight.  I have done the no sugar diet also; this also didn't do anything to my TSH as well as didn't assist in losing weight.  Your body needs sugar in order to burn calories properly, preferably natural sugars in fruits and such but it still needs sugars.

Over the last 18 years of being hypothyroid (they believe since childhood but don't know positively because kids weren't diagnosed with hypothyroidism then), I have discovered a few things:  
1) The ONLY way to reasonably and soundly lose weight and keep it off is to control your calorie intake, control your sugar intake and keep fats low as well as to exercise (i'm havig problems with the latter one because of issues with my knees);
2) It takes 3 to 4 times as much work to lose weight for hypothyroid people as it does normal people.  i.e. for a normal person, burning appx 4500 calories will lose 1 lb, however, for us, it'll take burning anywhere from 9000 to 18000 calories to lose that 1 lb.  Yes it *****.  
3) The less red meat you eat, the better off you are.  I don't understand why (or maybe it's more I don't remember why) but I have learned that the less red meat you eat, the easier it is to keep weight off.  
4) The more veggies and good fruits, the better.  

Unfortunately for us, the best thing to do is just change our lifestyle.  Follow an 1800 calorie ADA diet and control everything we eat.  Whoever decides to do this, good luck!
Avatar universal
What timing!  I just went to a new dr in Nov who put me on an elimination diet to reduce inflammation.  I lost 7 lbs and my legs quit swelling as much but no other positive results.  The pre-diet tests found I have reverse T3 above the top of the range and that is why I have to take 250 mg of ERFA to feel half way decent.  Hopefully the inflamation will go down and cause the RT3 to subside and I can lower my dose.  1 month on diet (no sugar, no gluten, no beef, seafood, etc). I go back the 23rd adn will get tested again.  I don't think I have a gluten reaction at this time unless it is the unseen inflammation.
649848 tn?1534637300
I voted to be in; however, I can't do the gluten free because  my doctor has told me not to; so while Stella doesn't want to "roar the board" by pushing g/f, I don't want to "roar the board" by putting it down, because I know it is totally appropriate/necessary for some people.  

In addition to that, I believe that we need all of the food groups, because they each provide necessary nutrients.  If one is allergic to certain foods or has adverse effects, including anything from acid reflux to weight gain, then by all means eliminate it, and if you feel better without it, don't eat it, but do make sure you get the nutrients from another food source.

That said:  Stella, can I come on board with the low glycemic portion?  I am a firm believer in that and my doctor is behind it 100%.  For those not familiar, the low glycemic diet consists of foods that are lower in sugar content and/or do not spike your blood sugar.  Simplified version:  The food we eat is eventually turned to sugar, which is where we get our energy .... If not used relatively quickly, this unused sugar, is stored as fat.  The trick is to eliminate refined sugar and flour, white rice, etc (simple carbs), and concentrate on those foods that will keep blood sugar steady (complex carbs/fiber, proteins, "good" fats", etc), rather than creating a "spike and drop" effect.  

The low glycemic diet is pretty critical for those with insulin resistance or type II diabetes (which is rampant in my family) or PCOS; it also helps control cravings, by controlling the "spikes and drops" in blood sugar.  For instance, if I eat a candy bar on an empty stomach, it fills me up for  a short time because my blood sugar shoots sky high and I feel like I'm ruling the world; but all of a sudden, the bottom drops out and I "crash", so I have to eat another candy bar (or other simple carb) to bring it back up - I, inevitably, end up in a vicious circle, and all that sugar ends up "hitching a ride" on my hips and behind.....  However, if I opt for an apple instead of the candy bar, I'm still getting the sweetness, without the calories, plus I get the added bonus of the fiber that's going to keep me satisfied longer AND helps with one of the biggest hypo complaints - constipation.

The normal thought is that weight loss equals "calories in/calories out".  In theory, that should work, but when one's metabolism isn't working properly, what works for others, doesn't necessarily work for us.  

I truly believe that for hypothyroids to lose weight, we have to get our FT levels right first; particularly, FT3, which is the active thyroid hormone and controls metabolism.  Once the FT's are good for us (not just in range), we have to be every vigilant in regards to what/how much we eat and how much exercise we get.  

I have to dispute the "1800 calorie/day" statement - nothing is "across the board".  I'm 5' nothing and currently between 145 and 150 (overweight??); if I ate 1800 calories/day, I would be "ten ton tillie" in no time flat!!!  Your daily calorie intake will depend on the individual.  Like thyroid meds, there is no "one size fits all" in regards to calories, diet, exercise, etc....

BTW -- I am currently CoCL on the Weight Loss and Dieting community, so anyone who is interested is welcome to come over and take a look.

Whatever diet/exercise program you decide to go with, make sure your doctor approves.

393685 tn?1425816122
I really appreciate the comment and we all reconize that everyone is different.

I do feel a correction of just calorie intake will guarantee weight loss for hypo's.

In fact I haven't meant anyone that just lowered their calories and lost weight. Quite frankly the complete opposite happens for so many.

Our bodies are mostly not able to digest things as intended when its slower ( hypo) and the calories are almost non-important.

Even an 800 calorie diet followed, a patient likely can go into their doctors appointment and see weight gain. Its common too when under treted or not diagnoised.

SOme 800 calorie dieters ( some HCG patients) will fail in vast majority due to a shut down of metobolism with hypoT

Fruit is a high content of natural sugar and again - hypos are not able to process it as quick as it should and will turn into a backwards insulin for better words. The pancrease will think it should go into stored fat. Many foods that we hardly expect would have sugar do - we just don't taste it. Plain Oatmeal for example provides a proper amount and source of sugar for us.

So again - Sorry this failed for you and I am glad you made mention of how we should look at our conditions to decide what's good and not so good.
393685 tn?1425816122
And in cost - that all depend on how quick you are purchasing your meals. There are simple choices and foods very inexpensive to maintain that are gluten free.

Have you heard for example the Raw Diet? very good.
649848 tn?1534637300
The closer to raw your food is, the better........... that doesn't mean you have to eat raw foods - just that the less processed they are, the better........

Think -- fresh (raw), frozen (raw, unless with added sugar), then canned.......
168348 tn?1379360675
This is all great info ...
219241 tn?1413541365
The 800 calorie diet and weight gain is due to the brain thinking it is in starvation mode and will adjust by not allowing the fat cells to distribute. It's called Famine protection.  The lower the calorie intake the more damage you are doing to your body. The body will take what it needs from organs, and you end up with a lot of problems. Do that long enough and you will go past the famine protection and end up with a lot of trouble.
Better to stick to a calorie tailored diet, example average woman needs around 2000 calories a day. If sedentary, take off 500, if more an athletic type add 500. The human brain uses up to 1/3 of our calorific intake!
393685 tn?1425816122
but what you are taking in as a hypo is important to achieve weight loss and wellness too.

Being active on a 2000 calorie diet is important and if the hypo can't exercise enough due to their condition the calories present may not burn off.

Its a process.
219241 tn?1413541365
That's when the hypo has to adjust their calorific intake! Crikey! I lost over 88 lbs being a hypo with no meds but learned how the body uses food and how the body works. I lowered my calories, cut out the so called low fat items (which have hidden sugars and fats to make them taste nice) the weight fell off. I was a vegetarian then, but wasn't able to do any exercise. I learned the hard way, the human body needs a balance of protein and good fats along with vegetables and certain fruits.

There is so much mis-information out there, it worries me.

@jjlis1313 I hear you on the costing and family issues with the G/F diet. I did lose weight being on it, cos I never ate any thing with wheat in it, BUT also never could afford the breads, pasta etc. So I learned to give up sandwiches and my pasta dinners! Boring, and yes, it peeves me big time to miss out sometimes, but I keep a photo of myself, (which you can see on my profile) when I was over 220 lbs and I never again worry about the pricey bread! LOL!

Gluten free won't cure any thyroid disease. Might make you feel a bit better, as it did me when I got rid of wheat and gluten products from my diet. A Hashimoto patient has enough brain fog with out the extra from a gut that sends out the message, "I can't digest this!"  

Stella you mentioned kegels. I am not sure that most would realise this is the exercise to improve the pelvic floor muscles. This helps to avoid incontinence and also improve sexual function. It is also important for men to do them too.  They are tricky and takes a lot of work, but are VERY important to avoid uterine prolapse in later life as well.

I do hope that many on the forum take a look at their present way of being and do make the good changes in trying to improve their lives by wellness and good form.

Thyroid disease is not the be all and end all of our lives....we have a life and we WILL enjoy it!!!!!
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