The thyroid gland is small, but mighty because it controls and plays roles in so many different functions of the body. The thyroid gland can become underactive or overactive in some people and both cause a unique set of problems. Those with an underactive thyroid may gain weight, have mental fogginess and be tired a lot.
Those with an overactive thyroid may lose weight and muscle mass, experience insomnia and have a rapid heart rate. Both conditions need to be controlled or else they can significantly impact a person’s life. The thyroid gland itself secretes hormones that are necessary for proper body function, including tri-iodothyronine, thyroxine and calcitonin.
This gland, and the hormones it secretes, work to do many things, such as:
Cellular protein synthesis
Regulate cardiac and muscle activity
Improve metabolism and help the body turn food into energy
Turns beta-carotene into vitamin A
Regulates growth during childhood
Affects mental processes
Aids in the regulation of a person’s sex drive and a woman’s menstrual period.
There are many ways to keep the thyroid healthy and herbs are actually a rather popular option. There are many different herbs that may be helpful so that your thyroid is always functioning efficiently.
Always talk to your doctor before adding any herbs to your health regimen.
Iodine is not necessarily an herb, but it is critical for proper thyroid function. Iodine must be increased if your thyroid is underactive and there are supplements to help with this or you can eat certain foods and herbs to replace iodine. Popular iodine-rich foods include seaweed, kelp, parsley, eggs, meat, fish and potatoes.
This is a type of seaweed that many people use when they are experiencing an underactive thyroid. This herb is very high in iodine so that it can replace what the thyroid gland is missing to improve overall function. On average, 200 milligrams is recommended each day, but a doctor can give you a more exact amount.
Flax seed is a very rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and these are very important for a healthy thyroid gland. Flax seed oil and regular flax seeds may help those with underactive thyroid to get the condition under control.
In general, it is recommended to take about one tablespoon each day of ground flax seeds and this should be done on an empty stomach. Take the ground seeds with water. You can also use flax seed oil and reap the same benefits, but you only need one teaspoon of the oil each day.
Ginger is best known for settling the stomach, but this herb is a great source of magnesium, zinc and potassium, all of which are important for the thyroid. They all help to reduce inflammation levels as well.
You can have ginger any way you like as long as you use the fresh herb. Consider making a tea, adding this herb to foods or even just eating a little dried ginger each day.
This is a great herb for helping you recover from common illnesses, but it is also a great herb for those with either thyroiditis or overactive thyroid. There are many over-the-counter supplements available, but taking the roots appears to be the most effective. While you should talk to your doctor first, this herb does not commonly cause an adverse effects.
The licorice herb helps to promote proper balance within the thyroid gland and those experiencing fatigue due to an underactive thyroid often report more energy when using this herb.
It contains what is referred to as triterpenoid glycerrhetinic acid which may aid in stopping the growth of more invasive thyroid cancer cells.
Evening Primrose Oil
This herb is full of amino acids and these acids are critical for optimal thyroid health. They aid in improve thyroid function and they can also help to alleviate some of the symptoms of an underactive thyroid, such as heavy menstrual periods and hair loss. Just a tablespoon a day is the general recommendation to decrease inflammation and promote thyroid health.
Nettle is sometimes referred to as a thyroid tonic because it is able to offer some balance in both overactive thyroid and underactive thyroid. It is especially helpful for an underactive thyroid because is aids in reversing the iodine deficiency due to its high iodine content. You can make a tea out of nettle by adding one tablespoon of this dried herb to water and allowing it to steep for 10 minutes.
This herb helps to improve underactive thyroid and it can also address the fatigue that is associated with it. This type of ginseng is a natural and gentle stimulant allowing it to boost energy without a crash later one.
It is recommended that people take between 100 and 200 milligrams two times a day. It is best to take one dose prior to lunch and another prior to breakfast.
This herb contains a high dose of iodine which is helpful for underactive thyroid. It also helps to improve the health of the thyroid overall. You can include this herb in your daily diet by making a tea each day to nourish the thyroid and increase iodine intake.