reduce symptoms of hypothyroidism
You probably don’t spend a lot of time thinking about your glands. I mean, why would you?? But I’ll tell you what, even your body’s tiny glands can have a big impact on the way you feel day in and day out.
I know that first hand. I’m years into my hypothyroidism diagnosis, and I finally feel like I have a handle on my symptoms.
Quick refresher: hypothyroidism is a condition you get when your thyroid gland — the little butterfly-shaped gland in your neck — doesn’t make enough of its hormones. Since it’s such a small gland, that might not seem like a big deal. But my hypothyroidism symptoms absolutely shaped my life until I got them under control!
Whether you know you have hypo or you’ve been feeling off and you’re trying to figure out what’s up in your body, this blog is for you.
Common hypothyroidism symptoms
Hypo affects different people differently. (The big bummer? It affects more women than men.)
On top of that, hypo symptoms can ebb and flow or totally change over time. That said, there are a bunch of hypothyroidism symptoms I want to list here so you can get a better idea of if this condition might be affecting you. Some of the top signs of hypo are:
- Brain fog/trouble remember things
- Mood swings
- Weight gain and a puffy face
- Dry skin
- Weak muscles
- Thinning hair
- Achiness and stiffness in your muscles and joints
- Being more sensitive to cold
Like, what the heck? It’s not enough that hypo can make you exhausted or irritable, it also has to make it harder to lose weight?? It’s a bum deal, I’m telling you.
If a bunch of those symptoms sound like you, I can NOT encourage you enough to go see your doctor. Figuring out the right medication to balance out your thyroid hormone levels takes time, but the sooner you start, the sooner you get to feel like yourself again.
And you don’t have to wait until your first doctor’s appointment to start doing things to help reduce symptoms of hypothyroidism! Here are a few things that made a big difference for me:
Foods for Hypothyroidism Symptoms
The cleaner and healthier my diet is, the better I feel. It doesn’t have to be crazy complicated just because you have hypo. Really, you should try to get lots of fruits and veggies, high-quality protein, and whole grains. Avoid packaged foods, especially ones with trans fats, lots of sugar, or a bunch of sodium.
Beyond that, those of us with hypo may benefit from getting more of certain nutrients, like iodine and zinc. I have a bunch of other resources you can use to dial in your diet and help reduce symptoms of hypothyroidism:
- My 4-week hypo meal plan
- What I eat in a day with hypo (video)
- What to eat with hypo (blog)
- The best nutrition for hypo (blog)
Get in a routine — and stick with it
When it comes to managing your hypothyroidism symptoms, it’s definitely a trial-and-error situation. That’s why I’m SO reliant on my routine. When you’re in the groove and you’re staying consistent, it’s easy to know what caused you to feel differently.
Like, if I’m sticking to cooking at home but I eat out one night with friends and I feel my hypothyroidism symptoms flare up after that, I can pretty easily trace it back to what I ate/drank at that dinner.
Try to get in a routine with what you’re eating, how much you’re exercising, when you’re sleeping and waking up, and your self-care. That way, you can get a better feel for what affects you positively and negatively. And then you can keep tweaking to feel better and better!
Don’t forget the little things
Here’s the thing with hypo. Doing all the things you should do to feel your best can def feel like a lot of work. And when I’m feeling good, it’s easy to be like, “Is it even worth it??”
But then I slack off with my supplements, or maybe even my medication, and soon I’m not feeling so good anymore. Now I’m back to managing my hypothyroidism symptoms.
If little things help you feel better, stick with them!!! Even when you feel awesome — because they’re probably a big part of why you’re feeling good.
For me, a huge part of feeling my best is sticking with my supplements and vitamins. It’s such a little thing that it can feel easy to let it slide. But if I miss my doses for a bunch of days in a row, I start to feel worse and worse. And then I’m playing catch-up.
Really, it makes so much more sense to stick with it so you can just keep feeling better and better! It might be helpful to make a list of all the stuff that helps you keep your hypothyroidism symptoms under control. Then, keep that list somewhere you’ll see it regularly. That way, if a little thing starts to slip through the cracks, you’ll get reminded to work it back into your routine.
Managing hypothyroidism symptoms is an ongoing project. But I’m right there with you! Together, if we keep our diets clean, stick with our routines, and continue doing the little things that help us, we can all feel our best! Let’s stick it to those stupid thryoid glands, girls!!