The top five things you need to do to boost your metabolism
The thyroid, thru hormonal signaling, is the gland that regulates the speed at which our cells work, including the rate at which it loses weight. Brain fog, fatigue, dry skin, weight gain or difficulty losing weight, muscle weakness, dry skin and constipation are just a few symptoms of a sluggish thyroid. Some signs include high cholesterol and anemia. These widespread signs and symptoms of underactive thyroid hormones are due to the fact that every single cell in our bodies needs these hormones to be turned on to work properly; when these hormones are not readily available, there is insufficient cell function. The thyroid hormones need to be, first, produced, but they also have to be activated by the liver and the gut before they can be utilized. Thus, a healthy digestive tract and liver are imperative to boost metabolism for weight loss.
The thyroid requires very specific nutrients to produce, activate and be able to utilize these hormones, being the top five, the following:
WHAT TO DO
1. Include selenium and iodine
Selenium and iodine are crucial minerals to produce and activate the thyroid hormones. Selenium acts as an antioxidant as well, protecting the thyroid from oxidative stress and binding to mercury, making it completely inert.
Eat foods high in selenium -found in meat, eggs, mushrooms, sunflower seeds and Brazil nuts. Have two Brazil nuts per day religiously, as medicine (food is, after all, medicine).
Iodine is found primarily in table salt and seafood.
2. Have enough protein
Protein synthesis is essential for growth and repair of nearly all tissues -including the digestive tract and muscle mass-, enzyme and hormone production. Having an adequate amount of protein rich food and supplements is a fundamental aspect of achieving optimal thyroid health; being the quality of the protein the most important.
The highest quality protein from food, include:
· Red meat
Although dairy is high in protein, cow’s milk should be avoided as it is often contaminated with antibiotics, hormones and toxins.
For protein and amino acid supplementation, I recommend whey protein for those who are not intolerant to dairy. Pea, hemp and Sacha Inchi are healthy choices for those who are lactose intolerant or who follow a vegetarian diet.
3. Promote gut and liver health by avoiding the most common triggers:
1) food sensitivities or allergies -including dairy, gluten, and pesticides found in GMO or non-organic food-
2) processed food as these have artificial flavorings, colorings, and specific additives (bromine interferes with the production of thyroid hormones) that disrupt the thyroid gland
3) bacterial imbalance from sugar and gluten intake, unhealthy vegetable oils, use of antibiotics, and alcohol consumption.
An unhealthy digestive tract can contribute to nutrient deficiencies and trigger autoimmune responses (an autoimmune cause counts for 90% of underactive thyroid function known as Hashimoto’s)
1) choose organic produce or grass-fed animal sources
2) eat vegetables, protein and healthy fats instead of grains or flours (usually rich in pesticides and gluten)
3) avoid lactose and pesticides found in cow’s milk, unless cultured (Greek yogurt, cheese, kefir) and grass-fed sourced
4) eat whole, clean foods instead of packaged, pre-made foods and protein shakes, or eating out at restaurants
5) eat fermented foods, fiber rich food and take a probiotic supplement to reduce inflammation from “bad” gut bacterial overgrowth and reestablish a healthy microbiome and immune response.
4. Measure serum Vitamin D
Vitamin D3 has been linked to autoimmune disorders such as hypothyroidism and cancer. It also should be
evaluated and monitored regularly.
Include Vitamin D3 rich foods and get some sun exposure (at least 20 min/ week).
Supplementing with Vitamin D3 can help get to the optimal serum range. Serum levels should be monitored every 6 months and supplementation must be re-evaluated. Be proactive! Know your serum levels. Vitamin D is not only a vitamin and a antioxidant, it is also a hormone!
Being “OK” or just “normal” is not good enough…you want serum Vitamin D to be at optimal ranges.
The correct lab test is 25(OH)D, called 25-hydroxyvitamin D. Optimal serum ranges for thyroid function are 50-80 ng/mL. Supplementing with 5,000 IU of Vitamin D3 is usually safe. Follow your PCP recommendations or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
5. Include Omega 3
Omega 3 is a foundational nutrient to reduce overall inflammation, lower blood pressure, curb joint stiffness and pain, improve depression, promote skin health and for improving the efficiency of the brain.
Include dietary sources such as walnuts, chia, hemp and flax seeds, salmon, sardines and trout. Grass fed animal sources such as butter and red meat also have Omega 3. Hemp and flaxseed milk are an excellent substitute to dairy and are high in omega-3. In addition, choose a clean, high-quality supplement with at least 1g/day of Omega 3 from a combination of EPA and DHA. A high-quality Omega 3 should be tested for heavy metals, PCBs, dioxins, pesticides, and oxidation values and should NOY contain Omega 6 or Omega 9.
To a long, healthy, productive, and happy life
Lucia Chavez, NC