In my own personal experience, and as a practitioner specializing in thyroid disorders, I have found that the most common triggers of thyroid dysfunction are usually nutrient depletions, food sensitivities, toxins, stress, infections, and poor gut health. These triggers are all closely tied to one another and are often interconnected. For example, a deficiency of certain nutrients can lead to an accumulation of toxins. An impaired ability to handle stress can cause less resilience for overcoming infections. Poor digestion can lead to food sensitivities; and food sensitivities, infections, and stress can all contribute to nutrient depletions.
One way to look at it is that our body is a complex system of positive and negative feedback loops, which are always trying to help us adapt to our current environment in order to give us the best chances of survival. When the body is overwhelmed with messages that the current environment is "unsafe," (such as sensing deficiencies, toxins, and other types of triggers), it may go into a conservation mode. This is when metabolism—by ways of the thyroid—is slowed. In many cases, health dysfunctions are the body’s way of protecting us to help us survive, and these dysfunctions will continue unless we do something let the body know it's safe.
One of the fundamental ways to let your body know it's safe is proper nutrition (or food pharmacology, as I like to call it). Food pharmacology entails eating whole, nutrient-dense foods—like this green smoothie—as well as avoiding the foods that cause inflammation in your body. Most people with thyroid conditions also feel best with a nutritional plan free of gluten, dairy, and soy. And while I love the theory that we should get all of our nutrients from food, that’s not always possible, especially for people with multiple food sensitivities and digestive difficulties. If this sounds like you, consider these five important nutrients to support the function of your thyroid: