Adjusting to Life With Hashimoto’s Disease: Medical Care and Lifestyle Supports

Thyroid disorders affect approximately 20 million Americans. But these conditions have unique causes, symptoms, and treatments. For example, Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disorder that causes your body to attack your thyroid, causing damage that impacts its function.

The problem with Hashimoto’s disease is that you may not notice signs of a problem until permanent thyroid damage occurs. Your thyroid gland helps regulate many of your bodily functions. So, when symptoms of Hashimoto’s disease finally arise, it’s typically due to diminished performance in your thyroid gland.

Signs of Hashimoto’s disease include:

Fortunately, there are ways to live with Hashimoto’s disease and restore balance to your body. At Sonoran Endocrinology, our expert, Dr. Rohit Dwivedi, recommends a two-pronged approach: medical care and lifestyle changes.

Medical care for Hashimoto’s disease

If you’ve been struggling with symptoms like constipation, fatigue, or dry skin, medication can offer significant relief. 

Dr. Dwivedi takes a personalized approach to addressing a thyroid hormone imbalance. The first step involves the latest and most advanced diagnostic testing to thoroughly evaluate your thyroid function. Based on this information, Dr. Dwivedi could offer synthetic levothyroxine hormone therapy to replace lost thyroid hormones.

Synthetic levothyroxine can correct hormone imbalance because it works like the natural hormone produced by your thyroid. Dr. Dwivedi performs regular testing to ensure you take the precise dose needed to normalize your hormone levels.

In addition to medication, Dr. Dwivedi could also recommend specific supplements to help support your overall health.

Lifestyle changes for Hashimoto’s disease

Medication can offer significant relief when you live with Hashimoto’s disease. However, making lifestyle changes at the same time can provide even more dramatic results.

One key area for modification involves diet. Research indicates that inflammation plays a big role in Hashimoto’s symptoms. And what’s a driving factor in inflammation? That’s right, the food you eat. 

To help, Dr. Dwivedi may recommend making these evidence-based dietary changes to help keep inflammation under control.

Go gluten- or grain-free

There’s a potential link between Hashimoto’s and celiac disease — a disorder that triggers an immune response after eating gluten. In fact, experts often recommend testing people with Hashimoto’s disease for celiac disease.

Following a gluten-free diet means eliminating all products containing wheat, barley, spelt, and rye. Grain-free diets go one step further by avoiding all grains.

Whether you test positive for celiac disease or not, studies show that people with Hashimoto’s and other autoimmune diseases often benefit from a gluten-free diet because it reduces inflammation in the body.

Skip the dairy

Gluten intolerance isn’t the only problem people have Hashimoto’s disease share. It’s also common to have issues with dairy. Believe it or not, a study of 83 women with Hashimoto’s disease revealed that about 76% of them also had lactose intolerance.

If you have digestive problems linked to lactose, consider ditching the dairy, which may improve your medication absorption at the same time.

Focus on whole foods

Consuming whole, nutrient-dense foods and avoiding highly processed products is always a good idea. But it’s even more important when you have Hashimoto’s disease. 

Not only do nutritious foods like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and fiber-rich carbohydrates help improve your health and manage your weight, they also provide antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits.

To learn more about living with Hashimoto’s disease, contact our office to schedule an appointment by calling the office nearest you -- in either Surprise or Gilbert, Arizona.

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