This has been listed based on the experiences of Ranika Kararia
List of things I followed to heal my thyroid and related symptoms.
Lifestyle changes for healing your Thyroid
Step 1 : Identify your root cause.
The following variables need to be in mint condition to begin healing-
3. Bowel movement
4. Liver health
5. Emotional health.
There is no one underlying cause of thyroidism. Most of the time thyroidism is a result of irregularities in any one of the above rather than a faulty gland itself. Identify which one of the above may be affecting you adversely.
1.Bad sleep habits will always disrupt your thyroid. Make sure you sleep well and on time. The circadian rhythm regulates hormones. One of the reasons why you must never get your thyroid levels after a night of bad sleep is that it can notch up your tsh levels.
2. It is essential to stick to home cooked food only. Quit processed and packaged foods. Follow an elimination diet to kick out your inflammatory foods. Common ones are- dairy, soya, corn, eggs, white sugar, cauliflower, broccoli, some fruits , alcohol, seeds and nuts. 6 weeks per food is a good way to be sure of your triggers. This is one of the easiest variables to control, so pay much attention to it.
3. A clogged bowel will cause thyroid problems too. Anything less than once a day is not normal. In alternative medicine, the seat of thyroid is the intestine. One of the reasons why a good Vaidya will always give bowel cleansing preparations to treat your thyroid.
4. The liver helps in conversion of t4 to t3. Keep it optimum. Sugar is as bad a culprit as alcohol for the liver…Stay away from it. Take liver supporting herbal supplements if you need to. (Avoid liv52 by brand Himalaya as it has propylene glycol) I recommend bhumi amlaki(fresh leaves or dried), LKC capsules by Organic India or milk thistle and dandelion supplements or teas.
5. Stress: do not underestimate the ‘power’ of stress. Meditate, pray, paint, walk…whatever you can do to GENTLY relax yourself.
6. In a lot of cases, a severe and prolonged electrolyte imbalance will aggravate symptoms. Water retention will worsen. Switch to natural salt. Stop sodium chloride aka table salt. Do the kidney cleanse often. Have fresh coconut water.
7. Fatigue: Too much exercise or exertion can put your body into fight mode producing too much cortisol…It WILL disrupt sleep, cause panic attacks, anxiety or palpitations. At its worst, it will cause adrenal fatigue, which is NOT easy to heal and shockingly not recognised by doctors.
Step 2: Eliminate toxicity.
Irrespective of your health status, it is better to stay away from anything toxic . As with all ailments, one needs to detoxify even more. Remove toxic foods and products. :
1. Packaged food.
2. Processed meat
3. Carton/bottled juices
4. Carbonated drinks
5. Table salt
6. Refined sugar
7. Refined oils
8. Store bought breads
9. Commercial biscuits
10. Stale refrigerated food.
11. Dairy products (except ghee)
12. Soya in any form.
13. Artificial sweeteners.
3. Non-stick ware
4. Aluminum utensils
5. Microwave oven
Step 3 : Gentle exercise.
Choose a form of exercise.
Your exercise should be slow to medium paced that helps maintain slow and deep breathing. Do not exert. High intensity workouts may fatigue you more and aggravate inflammation and vata . Change the duration and effort as per your prevailing symptoms.
4. Surya namaskar: slow paced.
*For yogasanas mentioned, a variation of each of them depending on your flexibility and mobility is possible. Ask your instructor to customise with props. Search online. You may want to look at the Iyengar style improvisations.
Step 4 : Extra efforts.
Take in as much sun as possible to maintain good vitamin D levels.
Apply sesame/coconut oil to skin and sit in the sun for 15 to 30 mins, daily if possible. Try to expose as much skin as possible. Avoid wearing sun glasses. Please do not try to de-tan. Tanning will protect your skin from burning/rashes if you are prone to it.
Make sure to avoid snacking throughout the day. Have three meals a day. If you usually feel hungry in the evening, keeping a small portion of breakfast or lunch will keep you off tea-time biscuits and nibbles.
If you prefer an LCHF diet, kindly take in fats other than dairy. Ghee is an exception. Do not starve yourself or go on salad diets, they will not help in reducing weight! If digestion is sluggish, please stick to mainly cooked foods. Use the spice brew to improve digestion.
Step 5 : Supportive remedies.
These remedies may help in bringing relief to symptoms. These can only act as boosters to speed up healing naturally and are not a substitute to any medication you may be taking. Neither are these a substitute for the lifestyle changes mentioned in the previous steps. You may try them one at a time to see what benefits you.
Please do list any that you have tried and had good experience with.
* Starred remedies are feedbacks from other patients.
1. Coriander seed water:
Soak a tablespoon of coriander seeds overnight. Boil the next morning in glass of water. Drink on an empty stomach. Helps with brain fog and lethargy.
2. Coconut water 2 to 3 times a day. Helps with fatigue and reducing excess water retention.
3. Turmeric- spice brew:
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric.
Jaggery to taste.
Boil for 5 mins and drink. May steep tea leaves in the end .
Helps in digestion, bloating, inflammation.
4. *Horse gram boiled – only water to be drunk with lemon drops in it.
5. *Seetaphal leaves- Around 5 leaves boiled in 250ml water for 5 minutes. Filter and drink first thing in the morning, on empty stomach.
6. Turmeric almond/nut milk-
To be taken at bedtime to aid sleep. Temper 1/4 tsp of turmeric, 1 crushed pepper corn, 1 cardamom in half a teaspoon of ghee. Add the milk of your choice, few strands of saffron and boil.
7. Kidney Cleanse – works well to balance electrolytes and reduce retention. Its a very easy and short protocol. Benefits range from draining excess water retention, more energy, feeling alert. You might want to do it once a week for the first month.
8. Liver cleanse- Extremely beneficial in the long run. Some people have been able to heal themselves after a series of cleanses. Good way to detoxify. A lot of t4 to t3 conversion depends on liver functioning. Contraindications include constipation so you may want to address that before trying liver cleansing.