Chronic inflammation of the thyroid gland is a condition known as Hashimoto's disease. This inflammation damages the thyroid and can lead to impaired thyroid function, or hypothyroidism. This means not enough thyroid hormone is being produced, and these hormones affect brain development, metabolism, nervous system functions, muscle strength and other important bodily functions. Eating well cannot cure Hashimoto's disease, but good nutrition can ease some of the symptoms of the disease and promote general health and wellness.
Eat a high-fiber diet to reduce constipation, suggests the Hartford Hospital. Add fiber slowly to your diet to avoid indigestion. According to MayoClinic.com, men should consume at least 30 to 38 g of fiber daily, and women should aim for 21 to 25 g a day.
Select lower-calorie, low-fat foods. Individuals with Hashimoto's disease might experience weight gain. Avoiding trans fats, limiting your saturated fat to no more than 20 g daily, and eating low-fat dairy products, whole grains and lean proteins can help you manage your weight, says the American Academy of Family Physicians.
Consume foods containing iron. The National Endocrine and Metabolic Diseases Information Services says symptoms of Hashimoto's include fatigue, thinning hair and heavy periods. Iron-rich foods might alleviate some of these symptoms and replace iron lost through menstruation. Good foods to eat include lean red meat, chicken, fish, dried beans and peas, and green leafy vegetables.
- Hartford Hospital; "Hashimoto's Thyroiditis"; B. Gabriel Smolarz; September 2010
- MayoClinic.com; "High-Fiber Foods"; Mayo Clinic Staff; November 2009
- American Academy of Family Physicians; "What it Takes to Lose Weight"; December 2010
- National Endocrine and Metabolic Diseases Information Service; 'Hashimoto's Disease"; May 2009
- University of Maryland Medical Center; "Iron'; Dr. Steven Ehrlich; June 2009