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By February 7, 2009 - 9:47pm
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I am a bit of a health freak. I don't eat meat or any refined sugars. I avoid conventional medicine when possible, because I believe we can be healed by eating the right foods. I practice yoga three times a week and walk up 8 flights of stairs on my breaks at work. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's last fall. The physician wanted to remove my thyroid altogether, but I refused. I also watched Synthroid almost kill my mother, so I won't take that either. The alternative is Armour, which my mother-on-law takes. However, that product is made of animal derivatives, which is against my belief system. That leaves with the holistic alternative, Bladderwrack. My question is: are there foods I should be avoiding? I really don't want to pay the 180 dollars per half hour to ask my holistic physician this question. I read that broccoli, greens, strawberries, pears, and soy were all bad for the thyroid. I don't each much soy, but I do eat a lot of the other things and need to know how important it is for me to cut them out of my diet. Help?

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You might be interested in this article about Dr. Stephen Langer, co-author of "Solved: The Riddle of Illness," which is about thyroid disease. He is a doctor who focuses on nutritional and holistic approaches to chronic conditions (though the vegetarian aspect you are also concerned with is not mentioned here):


Here is the book that he wrote with James Scheer. Here is a quote from about.com:

"Once diagnosed with hypothyroidism, far too many doctors still tell you there's nothing you can do except take your thyroid hormone to be well. But this book discusses ways to help enhance wellness by providing the proper nutrition the thyroid needs. Approaches recommended in the book may help with the deficiencies underlying a condition, not to mention the symptoms that frequently don't resolve despite conventional treatments."

And here's the interview with Dr. Langer. Depending on symptoms, he discusses calcium, magnesium, Vitamin D:


Or a link to his book on Amazon if you're interested in reading the customer reviews there:


February 9, 2009 - 10:41am
EmpowHER Guest

Avoiding foods high in iodine will help to stabilize hormone levels;
food containing selenium has 30% chance to reduce level of TPO antibodies, this will make thyroiditis flares less severe

February 9, 2009 - 7:34am

Hi kitkat,

I'm so sorry you are going through this, and we'll try to help you find the answers you are looking for.

I assume you already found this online brochure for Hashimoto's, as it does discuss the bladderwrack tea. I could not find the author or organization producing this brochure, and I would not recommend using it as your source of credible information. It does have some interesting ideas for treatment of hashimoto's using complementary medicine: you can use it by asking your holistic physician about these specific suggested remedies. I did not find this information anywhere else; perhaps someone more educated on CAM (complementary and alternative medicine) practices can offer more information.

I found an interesting site regarding nutrition and thyroid:
"Dr. xx does not believe that any one food, supplement, or detoxification process is the easy solution to a thyroid problems. It's a function of finding the right balance among a number of approaches, and that's something that's difficult to do on your own. Dr. xx believes that most patients will need to find and work with a practitioner - whether it's a nutritionist, or holistic M.D., naturopath, or other insightful practitioner - who understands thyroid problems."

I am sure you know that because Hashimoto's is a progressive disease, that medication is highly recommend, and can lead to further problems if left untreated (I'm sorry you have this!!). I would suggest speaking with your holistic physician on a regular basis to find the right balance of options in your treatment, especially if you are opting-out of certain medications or treatments.

- NCAAM (Complementary and Alternative Medicine)
- MedlinePlus
- Power of Prevention

February 8, 2009 - 9:15am
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