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Whenever a disease is linked with a hormonal imbalance in the body, it can get really tricky to manage. This stands especially true if the person suffering from the condition is an ageing parent. While treatment and medication are necessary at this point in time, so is maintaining a balanced diet and avoiding foods that can aggravate the condition.
Hyperthyroidism can really screw up your parent’s health. The condition is marked by extreme fatigue, forgetfulness, depression and diabetes. And while your doctor might suggest medicines to regulate the thyroid gland, avoiding these foods can help your parents manage the condition better:
Vegetables like broccoli, spinach and cauliflower are full of fibre and nutrients that can interfere with the production of the thyroid hormone. A study published in the journal Indian Journal of Medical Research found that cruciferous vegetables contain goitrogens–which interferes with the iodine absorption of the thyroid gland and aggravate hyperthyroidism further.
Soy contains a compound called isoflavones which might affect your parent with hyperthyroidism negatively. A study published in the journal Thyroid found that consumption of soy can interfere with the absorption of thyroid medication. So, you might want to wait a few hours after consuming soy foods to give medication to your parents. Or better yet, avoid soy products altogether.
While soy-based products are healthy they are not right for your parent with hyperthyroidism. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Gluten found in wheat, bread, and pasta is thought to irritate the small intestine which can mess with the absorption of thyroid hormone replacement medication that your parents are taking.
In a study published in the journal Experimental and Clinical Endocrinology & Diabetes it was noted that a gluten-free diet has benefits for people with thyroid disease.
Processed foods such as snacks, biscuits and frozen foods are generally high in sodium. And it is often recommended for people with hyperthyroidism to avoid excess consumption of sodium. Too much of it can make the thyroid gland hyperactive, making the condition more severe.
While fibre is good for a smooth bowel movement, too much of it isn’t good for the thyroid gland. According to a guideline provided the American government, people above the age of 50 should only consume about 25 to 38 grams of fibre in a day. More than that can affect the digestive system and interfere with the absorption of medicines.
Consumption of alcohol has many cons, including making hyperthyroidism worse. In a study published in the Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism, it was found that alcohols tend to have a noxious effect on the activity of thyroid gland by suppressing the ability of the body to use the thyroid hormone.
Preferably, your parent must cut down the consumption of alcohol completely for better thyroid functioning.
Renowned clinical nutritionist in Delhi, Lovneet Batra suggests avoiding dairy products such as milk, cheese, paneer, curd, and butter. Dairy products can alter the hormonal balance in the body. Moreover, the condition of hyperthyroidism can also make it difficult for your parent to absorb and digest the calcium present in dairy products.
Please note: Make sure to check with your doctor before adding or removing food groups from your parent’s diet.