Diet for hypothyroidism: what to eat to help regulate thyroid?

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The diet for hypothyroidism consists of ingesting foods rich in iodine, selenium, zinc and copper, which are essential nutrients for the good functioning of the thyroid gland and found in fish, seafood, whole grains, vegetables and fruits dried.

Hypothyroidism is one of the most common endocrine diseases, and is characterized by a decrease in thyroid activity, which causes fewer hormones to be produced than are necessary for the optimal functioning of the organism, which can cause symptoms such as increased weight without apparent cause, stress, dry skin, fragile and brittle nails, calambres, among others.

It is important to remember that the main method of treatment for thyroid diseases, in general, is the use of specific drugs prescribed by the endocrine to control the symptoms. See some medications used to treat thyroid.

Foods that regulate the thyroid

The nutrients and the important foods to help regulate the thyroid naturally, in cases of hypothyroidism are:


Yodo is essential for the production of the thyroid hormone, which is why the lack of this mineral in the diet can cause problems such as hypothyroidism and goiter, which is the increase in the size of the thyroid gland.

The minimum iodine intake recommendation for adults is 75 ug per day, with a maximum of 1100 ug per day. The main sources of this mineral are seafood, seafood, seaweed, beans, cereals, milk and dairy products and yodated table salt. The consumption of 75 g of hake, for example, covers the daily iodine recommendations for an adult. See a list of foods rich in iodine.


Selenium is found in large areas on the thyroid, it can help in the production of these hormones. In addition to this, this mineral has antioxidant properties, which are essential to strengthen the immune system.

Selenium deficiency can contribute to the emergence of goiters and other thyroid problems. The recommendation for selenium intake is 55 ug per day for adults and the main sources of this mineral are meat, seafood, mushrooms, Brazil nuts and cereals. The consumption of 1 Brazil nut per day, for example, covers the selenium recommendations for an adult.


Zinc is another essential mineral for the production of thyroid hormone. Some studies show that the lack of this nutrient in the body can worsen hypothyroidism in people who have the illness. Likewise, zinc deficiency can also contribute to the development of hypothyroidism.

The recommendation for the consumption of zinc in adults is 15 mg per day, found mainly in foods such as chestnuts, nuts, almonds, calabaza seeds, oysters, red meats, chicken, beans and cereals. See a more complete list of foods rich in zinc.


It is a mineral with antioxidant function and necessary for the maintenance of the activity of the thyroid hormones and the metabolism of the fats. This mineral is responsible for the functioning of the thyroid gland and stimulates the production of thyroid hormones.

The recommendation in adults of copper is of 900 ug per day, being widely found in products of animal origin, such as seafood, viscera and meats, nuts, cereals and vegetables.

See a nutritionist on how the varied diet can help regulate your thyroid:

Example menu for hypothyroidism

The continuation table shows a 3-day sample menu to help control hypothyroidism:


Day 1

Day 2

Day 3


1 vase of natural yogurt + 1 banana in rodajas + 1 spoonful of oatmeal in today + 1 spoonful of calabaza seeds

1 cup of almond drink + 1 corn tortilla with queso and tomato

1 cup of skimmed cow’s milk + 1 wholemeal bread with semillas + 1 cheese wheel

morning snack

2 Brazil nuts + 2 mandarins

1 manzana + 1 spoonful of hazelnuts

1 pear + 4 nueces


1 medium hake fillet + 1 plate of cooked frijoles and zanahorias postre + 1 cucumber, onion and tomato salad + 1 tablespoon of olive oil + 1 pine cone roll

1 plate of wholegrain fideos with meat and natural tomato salsa + corn salad, curd and zanahoria + 1 tablespoon of olive oil + 1 slice of melon

1 medium or 2 small chicken fillets + 1/2 cup of quinoa + asparagus and mushrooms sautéed in olive oil + 1 orange


1 vase of grapefruit yoke + 1 round of oatmeal bread + 1 spoonful of ricotta

1 vase of orange juice + 3 rice galletas + 1/2 avocado + 1/2 tomato + 1 spoonful of queso for greasing

1 cup of skimmed cow milk + 1 oatmeal pancake with 1 spoonful of almond cream

The menu items vary from one person to another, depending on their age, body weight, height, level of food tolerance and tastes of each person, so it is ideal to consult a nutritionist to carry out a complete evaluation and work out a nutritional plan suited to your needs.

Foods that can interfere

Some foods that are consumed in excess for a long time can harm your thyroid:

Soy and derivatives

Soy and its derivatives, such as soy milk, tempeh or tofu, are sources of phytoestrogens, nutrients that perform the estrogen hormone seeding function in the body and are beneficial for health. However, when consumed in large quantities, these foods can deregulate the thyroid and cause hypothyroidism.

For people who have hypothyroidism, it is recommended to eat soy in moderation so that it does not harm the effect of the drug indicated by the endocrinologist, it is recommended to consume it at most 2 times a week.

cruciferous vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables, such as coliflor, col, turnip, radish, broccoli, cabbage or Brussels sprouts, are rich in antioxidants, being important for the prevention of many diseases. However, these vegetables also contain glucosinolates, which are compounds that reduce the production of thyroid hormone, which can cause hypothyroidism in people who consume little iodine per day.

Cruciferous vegetables should be included in the diet, but avoiding excessive amounts, being a good preference to consume 1 to 2 times a week, alternating with the intake of other vegetables.

Processed foods

Processed foods, such as smoked meats, salsas, snacks, contain some preservatives that interfere with thyroid absorption and can cause hypothyroidism. Likewise, these preservatives can cause more serious alterations, such as some types of cancer.

In addition to this, the consumption of processed foods is one of the main causes of weight gain and body fat. Excess fat in the body generates inflammation in several organs, harming the absorption of iodine in the thyroid, which can contribute to hypothyroidism.

Refined harinas and sugar

Excessive consumption of sugar, which is found in sweet foods, such as pasteles, golosinas and refined harinas that are present in foods, such as bread, galletas and pastas, can cause resistance to the hormone insulin and diabetes. This alteration can lead to the emergence of nodules or to cancer in the thyroid.

Other recommendations to follow

It is important to maintain certain recommendations to avoid weight gain that may be associated with hypothyroidism, these are:

  • Make 3 main meals and 2 to 3 snacks a day;
  • Consume 2 to 2.5 L of water a day;
  • Perform physical activity regularly at least 3 times a week for 1 hour;
  • Increase the consumption of fruits and vegetables, by at least 5 rations a day;
  • Prepare the food on a plate or in the oven, avoiding preparations such as stews or fried foods;
  • Decrease the consumption of simple sugars and fats.

When an individual is diagnosed with hypothyroidism, it is ideal to consult a nutritionist to have an individualized nutritional plan evaluated and implemented to meet the person’s needs, thus preventing the weight gain that may occur.

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Consult a Doctor | Translated by User2937

Content for educational purposes only

The translator user relied on the following text:

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Disclaimer – (English version>) This content has been prepared based on information from research, additional publications, or the translation/verification work of a volunteer editor of this web council. This is a non-profit service. It is strongly recommended that all details and information published be carefully verified. We never allow medication recommendations, medication package inserts or any medication guidance. We never allow partisan politics as information.

Isenção de responsabilidade – (versão em português): Este conteúdo foi preparado com base em informações de pesquisas, publicações adicionais ou no trabalho de tradução/verificação de um editor voluntário deste conselho web. Este é um serviço sem fins lucrativos. É altamente recomendável que todos os detalhes e informações publicadas sejam verificadas cuidadosamente. Nunca permitimos recomendações de medicamentos, bulas ou qualquer orientação sobre medicamentos. Nunca permitimos a política partidária como base para checagem. Para mais informações, leia nossos termos.

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