Yes, you can Improve Hashimoto’s Through Diet
One of the best things, and worst things, about Hashimoto’s, is that your diet has a powerful impact on how you are feeling.
But, as you will find, this is a double-edged sword.
Good in the sense that you HAVE control over how you are feeling (to some degree) but bad in the sense that you are accountable for everything that you put into your mouth!
Want an extra donut today? Better watch out because that gluten may flare up your immune system.
Want a quick breakfast by eating a bowl of cereal? Better be careful because dairy can exacerbate Hashimoto’s symptoms.
Trying to eat healthily by consuming raw vegetables? Too many may actually be harmful to your thyroid gland.
These are just a few of the issues that you can run into when trying to navigate the field of diet and your thyroid.
But don’t let this get you down:
Today we are going to demystify the link between your diet and how it impacts Hashimoto’s AND your immune system.
You will learn:
- A list of foods you should absolutely avoid if you have Hashimoto’s
- How these food groups wreak havoc on your thyroid gland and your immunes system
- How to know if you need to avoid these foods
- And more…
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Foods to Avoid if you Have Thyroid Problems:
I’ve found that these 10 foods cause the most problems for thyroid patients. Learn which foods you should avoid if you have thyroid disease of any type.
The Complete List of Thyroid Lab tests:
The list includes optimal ranges, normal ranges, and the complete list of tests you need to diagnose and manage thyroid disease correctly!
My Top 10 list of Food Groups that Hashimoto’s Patients Should Avoid
If you’ve had Hashimoto’s for any length of time then you probably already know that you should avoid gluten.
I am not going to harp on this topic for too long because this should really be something that you know already.
Gluten plays a major role in damaging the gut lining which can trigger inflammation, gut damage, and even trigger autoimmune disease by itself.
I’ve had the ability to treat many patients with Hashimoto’s over the years and it always surprises me when they say that they are not avoiding gluten or that they tried it and it didn’t work.
But when I press further, I find that they only gave giving up gluten a half-hearted attempt for a few weeks but never succeeded in removing it from their diet 100%.
If you fall into this category then you need to re-think your strategy!
Going gluten-free only works if you are 100% successful at removing it and if you keep it out of your diet for at LEAST 1 month (preferably two or three).
If you have given up gluten for a grand total of three months then you can say that you gave it a fair shot.
If you haven’t, then you need to go back and do it this way.
Once you re-introduce gluten you can then determine how your body is feeling and if you are feeling worse (or better which does happen sometimes).
#2. Iodized Salt.
Next on the list is iodized salt!
But I don’t want you to confuse iodized salt with iodine because they are NOT the same thing.
Iodized salt is simply salt that has been fortified with iodine (iodine has been added to it).
As a patient with Hashimoto’s, you’ve probably been told that iodine is dangerous so it makes perfect sense that you would want to avoid iodized salt.
But if you are thinking this then you are wrong.
Iodine is NOT harmful to patients with Hashimoto’s, though it does have the potential to cause issues (1) if it is used incorrectly.
The reason I recommend avoiding iodized salt is that consuming iodine in this way may actually be harmful to patients with Hashimoto’s.
But it’s not harmful BECAUSE of the iodine, it’s harmful because consuming it in this way means that you are taking a dose of iodine without additional protective nutrients such as selenium.
Consuming iodine, without selenium, may actually trigger inflammation and damage to your thyroid gland.
For this reason, I always recommend that iodine be taken either with selenium or after you’ve supplemented it with selenium so you know that your body has enough selenium in storage.
But let me be clear:
Iodine is NOT dangerous to Hashimoto’s patients and it’s not something that you should avoid.
In fact, avoiding iodine may actually be harmful and can cause more thyroid problems down the line.
#3. Dairy products.
Dairy is another no-brainer food group to avoid if you have Hashimoto’s.
Well, for starters, a huge percentage of people have problems digesting dairy and this number is as high as 70% of people when you look at studies (2).
And when you dig deeper, you find that not only can people not digest dairy sugars, but they also have problems with dairy proteins.
Many patients with Hashimoto’s often find that they are incredibly sensitive to the protein fragments found in dairy products.
And these sensitivities can lead to inflammation and damage to the gut lining which can impair immune function and lead to more damage from your Hashimoto’s.
We even have evidence from medical studies to suggest that this is the case!
Studies have looked closely at Hashimoto’s patients taking dairy and compared these people to those who avoided it and they found that people with Hashimoto’s who avoided dairy had better thyroid lab tests (3) than those who didn’t.
As a Hashimoto’s patient, you should avoid dairy as well as dairy-based products such as whey protein.
Instead of using whey protein, use a plant-based protein powder such as pea protein which is easy to digest and more friendly on the stomach.
Any product that contains soy should also be avoided if you have Hashimoto’s.
This can be harder than you think because soy is often found in many foods and it’s not always obvious that it’s there.
Why is soy a problem?
Soy products are highly processed (which is one major negative) and they can cause problems with your thyroid gland by acting as a goitrogen.
Goitrogens are substances that block the uptake of iodine into your thyroid and this prevents your thyroid from working properly.
As a patient with Hashimoto’s who is ALREADY suffering from inflammation and damage to the thyroid gland, the last thing you want to do is make your thyroid gland have to work harder to produce what it needs.
You might be able to get away by using organic non-GMO soy products but I would be cautious of using soy in general as most patients with Hashimoto’s do better without it.
Don’t shoot the messenger!
Coffee is something that you should NOT be consuming if you have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis or any sort of thyroid problem.
People who drink coffee tend to be overly attached to it and I’ve seen them make all sorts of excuses as to why they NEED to have it on a daily basis.
If you are making excuses for why you need to drink coffee then there’s a good chance that you know you need to avoid using it but your desire for drinking it exceeds your knowledge that it’s harmful to your body.
Coffee, and the caffeine found inside it, have been shown to cause low free thyroid hormone levels (4), may put an increased drag on your adrenal function, may reduce the quality of your sleep, and may have addictive properties.
Consume it at your own risk, but I can tell you from treating many patients with Hashimoto’s and hearing their stories, that getting off of coffee can be a huge benefit to your thyroid and overall health.
You can and should think of alcohol as poison to your thyroid gland.
Alcohol not only has the ability to poison or damage cells in your body, but it also has a direct negative effect on your pituitary gland and thyroid function.
Consuming alcohol can also cause damage to your liver which reduces how well your liver functions.
Why does that matter?
Because your liver is the site of the conversion of thyroid hormones!
The more damage to your liver, the less active your thyroid hormone will be.
My recommendation is to avoid alcohol 100% if you have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.
Your thyroid will thank you as well as the rest of your body.
#7. Processed Foods.
Processed foods should pretty much be avoided whether you have Hashimoto’s or not but they should DEFINITELY be avoided if you have Hashimoto’s.
What are processed foods?
Processing is just a way to describe that the food you are about to eat has undergone some change or alteration prior to being sold (5).
For instance, if you go to the produce section of your grocery store you will find food that is NOT processed.
An apple, for instance, just needs to be picked from a tree before its sold.
Processed food, on the other hand, goes through several steps before its sold which may include the addition of preservatives, the addition of flavor enhancements, the addition of salt, the addition of fat, and so on.
The benefit of processing food is that it has a longer shelf life but the downside is that processed food causes DAMAGE and INFLAMMATION to your body!
You don’t need to worry about processed foods as long as you are consuming a diet that is 100% whole food.
But, in case, you weren’t already doing this, consider this section a reminder that processed foods, while more convenient, will cause serious long-term damage to your health.
#8. Processed Sugar
Most people will tell you that you need to avoid sugar 100% if you have Hashimoto’s, especially if you are overweight.
There actually isn’t a lot of evidence to suggest that consuming sugar, healthy sugars anyway, is harmful directly to your thyroid gland.
But there is some evidence to suggest that consuming too much sugar can cause inflammation and cause another harmful condition known as insulin resistance.
But, this doesn’t mean that you need to be fearful of sugar or avoid it like the plague.
I am actually a big fan of using healthy carbohydrates in thyroid patients because I feel that many thyroid patients need more than they are getting.
Having said that, there is a right way to use sugar and a wrong way.
If you are going to use sugar you want to make sure you are getting it from NATURAL sources.
This includes things like:
- Maple syrup
- Agave syrup
- And minor amounts of coconut sugar
These types of sugars can be used to satisfy a sweet tooth if used in moderation.
Just like there are sugars that you can consume, there are also many sugars that you should avoid.
And sugars you want to avoid are processed sugars that have been ADDED to foods that are already processed.
Processed peanut butter with added sugar, would be an example of this but there are many others:
- Processed ice cream with added sugar
- Processed tomato sauce with added sugar
- Processed cereal with added sugar
- Processed “pre-made” dinners with added sugar and bad oils
I can’t list them all but hopefully, you get the picture.
Use MORE natural sources of sugar, in moderation, and zero processed and refined sugar.
#9. Bad Oils and Fats
If there is one section that I want you to take extra seriously it’s this section.
Consuming bad oils, in my opinion, is one of the main reasons that the health of our nation has declined so rapidly over the last 20-30 years.
These bad oils are heavily processed and, when consumed, can cause inflammation which has a long-lasting effect on the body.
These bad oils, because they are fats, can get incorporated into the cell membranes of the cells in your body.
This incorporation weakens the integrity of the cells and leads to problems in cellular processing which results in things like long-lasting inflammation and hormone problems.
Not only are these oils bad for your body, but they are also found EVERYWHERE.
And, even if consumed accidentally, they can stick around for months and months inside of your body.
If you have Hashimoto’s then you will want to avoid THESE oils at all costs:
- Soybean oil
- Peanut oil
- Corn oil
- Safflower oil
- Wheat-germ oil
- Canola oil
- Sunflower oil
- Cottonseed oil
- Grapeseed oil
- Rice bran oil
Instead, use THESE oils!
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Coconut oil
- Butter from grass-fed cows
These oils are more expensive but will help your body eliminate the bad oils and improve the function of your cells.
#10. Certain Vegetables (if eaten raw in LARGE quantities)
This is sort of a sneaky addition but it’s worth spending a little bit of time on.
Vegetables, in general, are AMAZING for your thyroid health and your overall health.
They should NOT be avoided, even if you have Hashimoto’s.
But, I should take some time to mention that consuming excessive amounts of certain types of vegetables (such as broccoli) has the POTENTIAL to cause minor thyroid problems.
This effect stems from the fact that broccoli and other vegetables in that family contain some goitrogens.
The good news is that you can basically eliminate these goitrogens by properly preparing your food.
Steaming your vegetables, instead of eating them raw, will eliminate this issue almost 100%.
And, even if you don’t steam your vegetables, eating raw veggies isn’t a problem for most patients with Hashimoto’s.
I mostly wanted to include this section so that you DON’T avoid veggies because you heard they can be dangerous to your thyroid gland but this is not the full story.
While you can make a significant impact on the health of your thyroid gland by avoiding certain foods, you should be aware that just avoiding foods should not be the only therapy that you use.
You should also be looking at therapies that include supplements designed to treat Hashimoto’s, certain prescription medications such as LDN, the use of thyroid hormones (if necessary), and so on.
Diet plays a major role in the development of Hashimoto’s but you will also want to look at these other areas if you are interested in treating and MANAGING your condition.
But now I want to hear from you:
Did any of the foods on this surprise you?
Are you already avoiding these food groups?
If not, are you planning on making any changes to your diet after reading this?
Do you also have any additional food groups to share which have caused problems for you personally?
Leave your questions or comments below!
112 thoughts on “10 Foods to Avoid in Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis”
My heart sank at Coffee.
Don’t shoot the messenger!
Can you suggest coffee alternatives? I read black tea has oxalates (as well as caffeine). I know it sounds strange but my personality is flat without just a few ounces of coffee in the morning. And I struggle to focus.
Teecino Dandelion dark roast.
Your personality will shine through once you are over the withdraw from coffee. 🙂
Chicory herbal tea chocolate tastes like coffee. Also dandy blend made from dandelions tastes like coffee.
Coffig is an excellent alternative to coffee. It’s caffeine free and made from 100% figs. (Sounds weird but it’s actually pretty good)You can get this on Amazon. And for a non dairy no sugar added creamer I highly recommend Thai Kitchen brand unsweetened coconut milk. Keep it in the fridge, shake it and it’s really close to tasting like half n half!
Dandy Blend is a good coffee alternative. I have mixed it with coffee to help wean from coffee.
Decaf maybe? I am disappointed about soy but I had it somewhere before
How about tea.
Is it just the caffeine that’s a problem or the coffee itself? Is green tea an option?
Oh one more ? Is all dairy created equal since products like cheddar cheese have trace amounts of lactose?
HI Cheyanne –
Unfortunately it is all dairy as the problem is casein, the dairy protein, not lactose. Casein is similar in molecular structure to our thyroid tissue and when we eat dairy, the presence of it activates the immune system against it and against our thyroid, resulting in more auto-immune damage to our thyroid.
For more info see Dr. Kharrazian’s book, “Why do I still have thyroid symptoms?”
is goat milk ok or not and are all these foods bad for hypothyroidism which I have I don’t have hashimotos
Some people can tolerate it.
Is decaf coffee ok or is it considered the same as regular?
Good information! Do you think a plant based diet is okay to follow? I have vitiligo & hoping this will stop the spreading.
I have the same questions regarding tea and cheese Does decaffeinated tea matter? No cheese, really?
Regarding natural sugars, what about Erythritol or Stevai? As for my Hashimotos, I’ve found avoiding gluten and whey protein to be helpful – no bloating, gas and accompanying blah feeling. I tried strict keto (20g carbs/day) but my TSH & T3 dropped really low. I’m not sure if it was due to the carb restriction or calorie restriction (body goes into starvation mode which is similar to hypothyroidism). Since then, I’ve found a modified ‘keto’/lower carb works for me (40-50g carbs/day) – I don’t get into ketosis, but it actually avoids most of the foods Dr Child’s lists in his post.
Super Helpful article and comments! Thank you!
I have eliminated gluten from my diet for the last two years. And have been vegan for about seven years. The shocker for me was the soy products. I like tofu and always buy organic tofu and tamari sauce. I don’t eat raw foods too often. Even cook my salads. Not a coffee drinker, it’s green tea for me. I will try and stop the soy for six months see if I feel better. Also notice rice makes me constipated if I have too much. Try and save my rice consumption for spring rolls. The oils were an eye opener also.
Dr Childs, can you please comment on Bulletproof Coffee by Dave Asprey. I believe he had thyroid issues before drinking it. I have been drinking this formulation for the past 6 weeks with no ill effects. Of course, test results may reflect otherwise. But generally, I do not have the issues I would normally with regular coffee such has anxiety and inflammation. Thank you!
Eliminating BOTH coffee AND alcohol. Oye Vay. Please, provide alternative options as solutions other than just stop them all together. I appreciate your guidance on this.
I had 2/3 of my Thyroid removed when I was 9 because I have Hashimoto’s disease!! I now have a small speck of a Thyroid left!
I’ve been drinking coffee since I was 10 and the longest I went without was 3 months. It’s more psychological than physical for me. It was how my family socialized. I’ve tried chickory-based coffee substitutes like Teecino that are pretty good. They help but for now, I’m allowing myself 1 cup of 1/2 caf in the morning.
Is this working for you? I only have a cup or maybe half a cup in the morning
Would love to hear a reply to the questions about coffee. Is decaffeinated ok to drink? and is drinking caffeinated teas a no-no as well?
I don’t recommend decaf or regular coffee.
Because it’s the pesticides on the coffee beans that is the real problem. I drink caffeinated tea and take a caffeine pill 200 mil. A day with no side effects.
Great info!!!! I just found your website today and saw several areas I would like to comment as well as ask questions. I’ve had hypo since 1996. First had graves and then Hashimoto disease. My TSH was 150 two weeks ago. Have been on Amour 120 for years. Looks like maybe some of these foods could have been what pushed my TSH to 150 but not sure. I am now taking 180 mg which may be a tad too strong because in the last 6 days I’m not sleeping more than a few hours at night. Can I cut the pill and take 135? Thank you for this wonderful site. Happy New Year everyone!
It’s definitely possible to cut your tablet in half or quarters but you should touch base with your doctor before you alter your dose to make sure it’s safe for you 🙂
I seem to have cross over symptoms. Can not handle feeling cold all of the time, not able to lose weight. At times racing heart…. T4 so called normal range and TSH 0.02. Lots of hair lose. My doctor says my thyroid is under active. Has never mentioned Graves or Hashimoto disease so not sure if this info is for me or not? Please advise many thanks.
It depends on whether or not you are taking thyroid medication. If you are then you may be taking too much, if you aren’t then you may be hyperthyroid instead of hypothyroid.
I eliminated gluten and dairy for one year and found that gluten was causing asthma and my seasonal allergies. I added dairy back and found no change other than my gut is visibly extended (inflamed) although I dont feel different. It probably is affecting my gut lining, but who knows. My other big one I need to avoid is canola oil. This is in everything (covering my almonds, tortilla chips…) and it was very hard to pinpoint on my own. Keeping a food journal was how I discovered it. Reading labels is a MUST. Canola makes me asthmatic. So do the chemical preservatives in sausages, bacon. Avoiding certain foods is key to feeling well for me.
Thank you for sharing! Keeping a food journal is definitely helpful and a great strategy.
Hi Dr Childs
Thank You for this great information…. I’m looking into this now because I had an attack last night 3-4 hours after eating, (like 50 knives poking in my stomach, bloating bent over in pain). Friends brought over air fried chicken wings and steamed edamame beans to watch the game. the wings were heavily coated with spices and garlic from costco no idea what exactly they were cooked when arrived. I’ve been absolutely GF for over 10 years. many things you’ve listed here has reminded me how far I’ve drifted from an alkaline friendly diet… OK the Monster Java has to go… but please tell me about edamame (steamed whole soy beans with kosher salt) Thanks Denise
Is safflower butter ok? My naturopath told me to take a tablespoon everyday. She is helping me with my thyroid/hashimoto’s.
Would be nice if NDT, didn’t have lactose added has a diluent. Would this cause issue for Hashimotos?
Yes, it causes issues for many people.
I have no thyroid and take Synthroid. Do I still need to avoid all these foods as well?
You have a different list of foods to avoid 🙂 This is specific to those with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis the autoimmune thyroid disease.
Can you post the list of foods to avoid for those with out a thyroid?
Sure, I will add it to the list of future blog posts!
Not a coffee drinker and have been doing my best to stay away from processed food and now gluten but no alcohol?
Definitely no alcohol! 🙂
So, eliminate dairy, but cows butter is ok? Confused. Everything g else makes total sense, if very difficult to adhere to!
Some people can tolerate butter from grass-fed cows but not everyone. You’ll have to play around with it to see which group you fall into. It’s often best to eliminate dairy 100% for a period of time and then add it back in slowly starting with butter then cheese then liquid milk.
I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism 17 years ago. I was given levothyroxine and used it for 15 years until I found a Hormone doctor. After my visit with the hormone doctor, I was told that I have Hashimoto. Then prescribed Nature Thyroid. It seemed to work along with the other supplements that were prescribed. Last year Natur thyroid was recalled, I am back on levothyroxine. I feel awful. I am also experiencing muscle and joint aches in my knees, shoulders, backs, and feeling depressed. I am now looking to find another doctor …. one who is experienced in thyroid care. Your articles give me hope. Thank you.
Great article, I like all of the options, but wonder if tea can be enjoyed as an alternative to coffee?
Yes, Herbal tea can be used as an alternative.
I’m a little confused. You said no dairy product on #3, but then recommended butter from grass-fed cow on #9. Isn’t it still a dairy product?
Also, I take gluten a casino pills on the occasion I decide to have something with that in it. Does this negate ill effects since I feel good, or is the damage still being done even if I can’t feel it?
It is technically dairy but not in the same ballpark in terms of its effects on the body as other liquid forms of dairy. If you can’t tolerate the grass fed butter as a form of fat then you can use the other fats for cooking/baking 🙂
I think I will try that, then! In regard to my other question…I take gluten a casien pill and digestive enzymes on the occasion I decide to have something with that in it. Does taking these pills negate side effects since I don’t hurt eating these foods on these pills, or is the damage still being done?
They may help somewhat but definitely do not protect you from the issues that these foods can cause.
thank you for taking the time to reply! Much appreciated 😉
I’m so excited you replied! 🙂 thank you! I’m a big fan and have been following you for years!! What are your thoughts on my other question about the gluten and casien pills?
Dr Westin – are “decaf” black teas ok? Or do I need to drink only plain herbal combos?
What do think? I have Hashimotos. Thanks for your reply.
It all depends but I typically recommend avoiding all coffee and anything with black/green tea.
Not surprised by the food list. I’ve been recently diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, hypothyroidism, and high estrogen, no testosterone. My functional med doctor prescribed the AIP diet, which I’ve done, but after 6-7 weeks, my blood tests revealed an increase in thyroid antibodies. How can you talk to your doctor to share concern that other treatment options might need to play a role in healing, while keeping lifestyle changes? I feel like each time I talk to my doctor, it’s rushed and she throws more supplement suggestions my way.
How do you feel about dairy in the context of non-Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism? Obviously there can be many possible factors involved but do you have any general recommendations? I don’t have hashimoto’s but am pretty addicted to cottage cheese and plain Greek yogurt. I also struggle with bulimia (15 years) and have not been able to recover despite trying everything under the sun.
My general recommendation in that setting would be to use dairy products if you can and if you’ve tested to make sure you can actually tolerate them. From my experience, most people can manage solid dairy products but don’t do well with liquid dairy products.
You are exactly right about this. In 2017, I eliminated gluten and in 2018 eliminated all the rest of the list. My autoantibodies decreased from over 600 down to the 200’s. I am in stage V Hashimoto’s, and I have also developed autoantibodies for RA in the past year; however, I have negligible inflammation and no joint pain. I decided to make one change this year, and that is to cook most of the vegetables I eat, instead of eating most of them raw in salads. Instead I make skillets with leafy greens in place of a salad. So far so good. My Fitbit tells me I am in excellent health for my age.
Hey Doc. Thank you for the info.
I went to look up a list of goitrogens and found an infographic that said alcohol, caffeine and carbonated drinks are bad for Thyroid health.
I do really enjoy some booze and wine (I’m working on it), I LOVE tea, and I have a fairly extensive seltzer habit.
Am I SOL?? I did read what you wrote above about alcohol being poison. Are there any that are healthier? (I don’t have any truly mixed drinks, I get that alcohol and sugar, like a margarita, is killer.)
It really depends on how you are defining goitrogens. While those are not true goitrogens they are goitrogens in the sense that they are not great for thyroid health in general.
I have Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and also Sjogren’s Syndrome, another autoimmune condition similar to Hashi, but Sjogren’s manifests as dry mouth, eyes and difficulties of the bodies ability to effectively distribute liquids/water throughout. Treatment for Sjogren’s is similar to Hashi, but with variations. I like your articles which have been helpful, but need a little more help. I know you specialize in Hashi, but can you suggest other sources for dealing with Sjoren’s as well? Thank you
Hi, I have had a thyroidectomy and have hashimotos. Are there any other foods that need to be avoided or can be taken off of the “no no” list?
Also I have a fatty liver and the hospital consultant told me to have two cups of coffee a day as it would help my liver, but should I avoid this because of the hashimotos?
There are much better things you can take for your liver including things like milk thistle! 🙂 Otherwise, you’d want to follow what’s on this list here.
Thank you, I will do.
So glad I’ve found your page. I feel the fog surrounding hashimoto’s is finally lifting. Looking forward to feeling better. Thank you
All great suggestions (for single people)! I bet they’d make anyone healthy. My family tries, but I got them all as a package. The little boy doesn’t eat much – good variety, but tiny quantities and is so, so thin. You can’t make a huge deal about food.
Also, can you tell if you have an issue with dairy? It seems to make my body happy.
I enjoy your articles, thank you for all the hours spent to help those with issues! Could you please do an article for those who’ve had a Thyroidectomy. Mine was removed 2013 after struggling with an overactive thyroid, diagnosed 2002, couldn’t get it to go in remission.
I feel like I don’t even know who I am, since these thyroid issues cause havoc on my life since before diagnosing it, I hoped it would be better after removing it, but when the count is perfect according to the dr, I feel terrible. What should I give up or (if anything like this article) what can I eat? As I find nothing on the web, all is either for hypo or hyper issues. Or should I be able to eat anything and it’s perhaps something unrelated? Many thanks in advance
Of course! I have many articles directed at those without a thyroid, you can check through my blog archives to see them all 🙂
In general, any information that I write directed at hypothyroid patients is relevant to you.
I have had hypothyroid since I was in my late 20’s I am know 65 years old. I have been on medicine and it has helped, however I was never told not to eat some foods that can effect the medication. Over the last year they had to increase the doses. Is hypothyroid different then hashimotos The last time I was at the Drs. she told me I have hashimotos and I always through is was just hypothyroid. Should I follow and avoid the 10 foods you listed./
Yes, hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s are two different entities. I would recommend reading this article for more information: https://www.restartmed.com/hypothyroid-vs-hashimotos/
You said “once you re-introduce gluten …” So we can actually re-introduce gluten after 3 months? Does that mean that we might get better and actually use it again with no problems? Does that mean our gut might improve, so we can use it again after some time? And why is there the possibility of getting worse even after we leave it for 3 months? Thanks.
Some people can tolerate gluten to varying degrees but there’s no way to really tell where you fit on the spectrum without some trial and error.
Your videos have given me so much good information about what to avoid and what is good to eat. I have been on Levothyroxine for years and was just diagnosed with Hashimotos. It has been a scary development but changing my diet and doing research has helped me a lot. I just want to thank you for this info, there is hope! Can you be my doctor? LOL, it’s been a nightmare trying to get in with someone.
My ND told me I cannot eat coconut oil as it’s inflammatory for my body. You say do not eat dairy but then suggest to eat grass fed butter? I’m confused now.
Hi Miss Sequoia,
Personal dietary recommendations will always take precedence over more general guidelines so you will never find consistency among dietary recommendations for this reason. Coconut oil may be inflammatory for you (unlikely, but possible) but it’s generally anti-inflammatory for most other people.
Very interesting article, having Hashimotos Thyroiditis I’ve been gluten free for a few years and its made a big difference, have been lactose free as of late but did not realise casein could be an issue, the oil was a real surprise so I’ll change that, but have been suffering headaches lately and can’t seem to shake them off-would you have any ideas on how to combat them-its driving me up the wall a bit
It depends on what type of headache it is! For instance, the causes of a migraine are different from those of regular headaches.
Hey Doctor Westin Childs,
What do you mean with processed foods? Frozen vegetables and fruits as well? And what about when I process the food? Like when it’s harvest time.
Greetings from Germany 🙂
Please see this post for more information on the type of processed foods that I’m talking about: https://www.restartmed.com/thyroid-approved-foods/
I’m confused over the oils as I’ve read other information that recommends cold pressed rapeseed oil (as it is lower in saturates than olive oil with the additional benefit of omega-3) and sunflower oil.
Why are these considered harmful for Hashimotos?
It is often the case that small amounts of cold-pressed oils, as well as non-GMO versions of oils such as sunflower oil, are fine to take in moderate quantities. You certainly wouldn’t want to get the bulk of your calories from these sources but they are fine in moderation. The problem with making recommendations for mildly healthy/neutral oils is that they can be taken to the extreme which is why I opted to avoid talking about them here.
I have been diagnosed with Hasimotos thyroditis and have my thyroid gland. I take 2.5 mg Methimazole daily. My T4 is 1.38 , T3 173.0 my TSH 0.015 I had symptoms of hyperthyroid , now it seems to be hypothyroid. My worst symptoms are gut related and not sleeping well. I try to go gluten free and dairy free but once and awhile have a bit of cheese and decafe. Do you think the Methimozole is needed?
Unfortunately, I don’t really have enough information to say here and I wouldn’t be able to provide that kind of medical advice over the internet. I would strongly recommend checking out this podcast I did with Dr. Osansky in which we discussed what therapies can help people get off of methimazole and why it’s so important: https://www.restartmed.com/how-to-prevent-thyroid-surgery-and-radioactive-iodine-ablation-therapy-dr-osansky-and-dr-childs/
Are eggs problematic for the thyroid?
Eggs are more of an individual thing. If you can consume them they are great but not everyone tolerates them.
Thanks for this. I’ve actually eaten GF DF (other than butter) and don’t consume processed sugar, soy, or drink alcohol or coffee (7+yrs). However it hasn’t fixed the issue but did improve symptoms somewhat. Not sure if you’ve looked into coffee enemas and any other alternatives to help with the liver function (helped me). My biggest challenge has been constipation (despite eating super healthy) so I only JUST got the Hashimoto’s diagnosis as eating so healthy seems to have kept most at bay but I’m hoping to go more primal Paleo now and get some thyroid hormone help. Thanks for the info! ☺️ Atleast I know I’m on the right track.
My pleasure and hope it helps!
i was put on levo a year and a half ago, after telling my doctor about my symptoms such as low energy and not sleeping, wt gain. She put me on .25 of levo. Always felt unwell taking this, tried to get off of it several times. After visiting an Endo, he told me to stop taking, and that i was falsely put on it. Terrible to have someone immediately stop taking that. Some Dr. Started taking Terrys natural with iodine, was working ok. Had an ultrasound of thyroid, and now have 3 nodules. (maybe from meds??) One was large. Had to have a biopsy , they found herthel cells, doctor told me she thinks it is cancerous. I feel worse now than I ever have, and the biopsy was 10 days ago. The new Endo sent the results for an Afirma test, waiting on those results. I have never felt worse in my life. No energy, almost impossible to make the day at work. To make it all worse, swollen and painful neck, and difficulty swallowing and breathing now. Im sure that was from the biopsy. At a loss as to what to do.
I would first start with a complete set of thyroid lab tests: https://www.restartmed.com/normal-thyroid-levels/
You can also immediately try the natural therapies listed here. Natural remedies can always be used and often have profound impacts on thyroid function: https://www.restartmed.com/natural-thyroid-remedies/
Since peanut oil is on the “bad” list, can I assume that peanut butter would also be good to avoid?
Natural peanut butter without any additives, sugars, or preservatives can be used as long as you tolerate legumes. Having said that, it’s usually best/healthier to just substitute it out for something like almond butter if you want to use it.
What is LDN?
LDN stands for low-dose naltrexone. You can learn more here: https://www.restartmed.com/how-to-use-ldn-for-hashimotos/
Savia here, please let me know with Hypothyroidism can i eat whole wheat bread or kneaded tortillas at home ? Or rice is good for Hypothyroidism. Help avoid and iiam sure i can carry out my diet as mentioned above.
It’s usually a good idea for most hypothyroid patients to avoid all sources of gluten. This isn’t universal, though, which is why you will need some trial and error to figure out which foods work best for you. The same logic applies to rice or any other food.
Well then… what the heck are Hypo’s supposed to eat? Carnivore Diet is BAD. No gluten, No sugar, No dairy, No caffeine, No nightshades, No beans, No nuts. Steamed veggies only? Low mercury fish? So… just fish & steamed vegetables?
I have been hypothyroid for nearly 28 years, never have I been told by ANY Dr. or Endocrinologist that diet can help because my thyroid is within “normal limits” on medication. So I have basically been left to SUFFER for 28 years with extremely stubborn weight gain, chronic fatigue, miserable bloating, anemia, low libido, joint pain, hair loss, itchy dry skin, constipation, diarrhea, painful gas, etc…etc…etc… because I have been told to eat whole grain, eggs, almond or soy milk, raw vegetables, beans and healthy nuts only to realize no matter how much or how little food I actually consume, or how much I exercise, I STILL FEEL LIKE SH** ON A DAILY BASIS! I know that I am NOT alone here.
There’s no one-size-fits-all diet for patients with Hashimoto’s but all sorts of diets have the potential to work including diets like keto, carnivore, low fodmap, elimination, whole30, etc. You can see a list of diets that have worked for other patients with Hashimoto’s here: https://www.restartmed.com/hashimotos-diet/
Also, please know that while diet can definitely help you feel better it’s rarely enough to control and manage all of your symptoms. You can read more about why that is here: https://www.restartmed.com/hashimotos-diet-myths/
I drink almond milk unsweetened. Is this ok to drink for hoshmitos?
That’s more of a personal issue than a Hashimoto’s issue. If you can tolerate it then, sure, feel free to use it. I personally am not a huge fan of processed non-dairy milk but there are many people who drink them without any issues.
I’m interested in starting with your program for Hashimoto & Hypo.
I am boarderline to be put on thyriod meds. Have not ever taken any for thyroid.
The BP meds I take daily are Coreg (beta blocker), Nifedipine ER (calcium channel blocker) and Losartan (antigiotensin receptor blkr.)- various BP meds last 30 yr.-hypertension high BP.
Please advise ASAP a program to start. Will have bld. tests after 30-45 days to find out results.
Are you referring to my bundles? If so, you’d want to use the Hashimoto’s bundle: https://www.restartmed.com/product/hashimotos-bundle/
But, just so you are aware, you’d never want to check your thyroid lab tests within 30-45 days of starting any therapy that you are hoping will impact your thyroid as it will take a minimum of 6-8 weeks to see any impact on lab test results. This is why doctors don’t check your lab tests more frequently than 6-8 weeks when making changes to your medication dose, you just don’t get meaningful information if you check it sooner than that.
Sunflower Oil is in your Protein Detox Powder – is this okay since it is taken daily? I have Hashimoto and Hypo.
I would guess the Iodine (pot.) in the powder will not increase high BP?
I am on 4 meds a day for Hypertension.
Thanks re quick response so I know if ok to place order.
I haven’t seen any issues with the non-GMO sunflower oil in DETOX and it’s been used in literally thousands of patients with Hashimoto’s at this point but, just so you are aware, I’ve reformulated my protein powder and the new version does not contain sunflower oil and it should be out in a few weeks.
Just found you! Diagnosed with hypothyroidism a year ago. I demanded to have antibody blood test which confirmed Hashimoto’s.
Surgeon wanted to remove entire thyroid due to it being double normal size with lots of nodules. Levothyroxine at 100mcg made life difficult (stomach pain, dizzy, headaches/migraine type eye squiggles) so reduced dosage to manageable symptoms, now working with Compounding Pharmacy to go to natural thyroid. Went on diet as you described: gluten free, dairy free, fresh unprocessed foods (cooked and raw), off booze – but cup of coffee each morn.
Thyroid reduced to normal size with similar reduction in nodules. Yeah! Currently fighting to reduce TSH and TPO numbers. Suggestions?
Your articles concur with everything I have read so thank you. People, changing your diet is one of the hardest things you will do, but it is well worth it. Work for 90% perfection and have your occasional treat.
Please see these articles for more information on how to improve your antibodies and thyroid lab tests:
I was away from home and didn’t have access to food I wasn’t allergic to so i ate only pistachios. After about a week I was sleeping constantly; all night then all day. Only waking for washroom and drink. I tried forcing myself awake to go to meetings and ended up in hospital with a severe migraine. They kept me overnight and I still couldn’t wake up. The room was needed so they put me in the hall where I slept for another day. I realized years later that the pistachios must have been acting like the soy and blocking the thyroid pill.
I was diagnosed in September of 2021 with Hashis. My levels were 773. I tested about 6 months later and was 267. I still have gut issues and sleep issues (mainly not sleeping). I’ve lost about 30 pounds due to a diverticulitis bout and not gained back more than 3 pounds. Thyroid tests normal. I’m also a 15 year breast cancer survivor with low hormone levels. I have eliminated gluten, dairy and reduced sugar. Also soy and night shades. On a supplement program including selenium. Was surprised about the comment on little to no coconut sugar and green teas. Does that include matcha? Is LDN a bad idea if you tend to not sleep and are under weight? I’m so thankful I found this article. People think I’m crazy or a hypochondriac because from the outside they can’t see what is wrong. Thanks Becky
LDN is usually well-tolerated and the only way to know whether you tolerate it or not would be to give it a try. You can learn more about additional treatments for Hashimoto’s here: https://www.restartmed.com/tpo-antibodies/
Is ashwagandha good or bad for Hashimotos?
It’s great to take for hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s. I’ll be making a video/article on that topic in the near future since there’s a lot of confusion.