A medical condition which affects the function of the thyroid gland is considered as thyroid disease. The disorder has now become very common and women are mostly affected by it. The symptoms of thyroid disease vary depending on the type.
- hypothyroidism (low function) caused by not having enough thyroid hormones,
- hyperthyroidism (high function) caused by having too much thyroid hormones,
- structural abnormalities, most commonly an enlargement of the thyroid gland,
- tumors which can be benign or cancerous
- abnormal thyroid function tests without any clinical symptoms.
When patient’s body doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormones or is not able to respond existing thyroid hormones properly then the case is said to be low function thyroid disease. Possible symptoms include:
- fatigue / low energy,
- unexplained weight gain,
- slow heart rate,
- sensitivity to cold temperatures,
- depressed mood, and/or
- memory difficulty
The high function thyroid diseases is a state of a body in which it produces too much thyroid hormone. Possible symptoms include:
- difficulty sleeping (insomnia),
- anxiety/ irritability, panic attacks,
- unexplained weight loss despite having a good appetite,
- fast heart rate,
- sensitivity to hot temperatures,
- increased bowel movements or diarrhea,
- excess sweating, and/or
- warm skin
It is an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland.
Both non-cancerous tumor and Thyroid cancer come in this category. Thyroid cancer such as Papillary, Follicular, Medullary, Anaplastic are also tumors, while, Lymphomas and metastasis from elsewhere, which is a rare condition are considered as thyroid tumours.
Medication side effects
Some medications can have the unintended side effect of affecting thyroid function. While certain of them can lead to significant thyroid disease.
Common low function thyroid symptoms include fatigue, low energy, weight gain, inability to tolerate the cold, slow heart rate, dry skin, and constipation. While, common high function thyroid symptoms include irritability, weight loss, fast heartbeat, heat intolerance, diarrhea, and enlargement of the thyroid. In both of the types, there may be swelling of a part of the neck, which is also known as goiter.
In order to improve the health of a thyroid gland and metabolism rate, one is suggested to include following nutritious food items in the diet:
For the conversion of thyroid hormone T4 into the useable form of T3, selenium is needed, which could be delivered by Cashews, almonds. and pumpkin seeds. These are also good sources of iron that also support thyroid health.
Selenium could also be supplied to the body with eggs.
Use iodized table salt in your food, which is good for proper functioning of the thyroid.
Seafood like Fish, shrimp, and seaweed provide good amounts of iodine.
5. Leafy greens
Concern surrounding the impact of spinach, kale and other similar vegetables — including broccoli, broccoli rabe, turnips, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, and cauliflower — on thyroid health is due to the effect they can have on the thyroid’s ability to absorb iodine.