Holistic health is all about finding the root cause of an issue. Taking into account every aspect of wellness. When I began researching holistic health one thing was very, very clear to me.
Your gut health is EVERYTHING!
Poor gut health effects every part of the body at one point or another. Poor gut health is the root cause of inflammation, which is the root cause of most diseases today.
In my case, auto-immunity. My auto-immune disease, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, left my thyroid in a completely underactive state (hypothyroidism). And it was dreadful.
Read: What is Leaky Gut & How to Heal
But the great, great news: Your gut health is something you can control and improve by changing what you put into your body.
So, as I began learning more about the gut, inflammation, auto-immunity, and holistic health, I began removing certain ingredients out of my diet to see if it would have a positive effect.
A common theme you’ll quickly notice throughout this post is “reducing inflammation.” And that’s because it really the root cause of these problems.
In this post, I share with you the foods I avoid & include in my daily diet, to keep my body calm, balanced, & healthy!
This post contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission (at no cost to you) if you purchase through the link. To read my full disclaimer, click here.
What Do I Avoid with Hypothyroidism?
This one is probably no surprise, because most with an auto-immune condition have a gluten intolerance to some extent.
Gluten and I do NOT mix. We just aren’t friends. Never will be. And I’m fine with that.
I personally, will feel sluggish for days with just the smallest bit of gluten. It also really messes with my digestive system & gut health.
There’s a condition called Leaky Gut Syndrome that is responsible for so many auto-immune conditions. I plan on writing a dedicated post on Leaky Gut Syndrome, because it’s too much to get into here.
But essentially, it is a condition in which the thin lining of your intestines have tiny, tiny holes, creating a passageway for toxins & free radicals to seep into your bloodstream, wreaking all sorts of havoc.
Gluten is one of the main culprits of leaky gut.
Gluten can have horrible effects on the immune system; sometimes even lasting up to 6 months. So, I avoid it at all costs.
Refined sugars are the “partner-in-crime” with gluten on the Leaky-Gut-Auto-Immune-flare-up list.
It’s no secret that refined sugars are toxic to the body, but they truly are inflammation’s best friend.
When my thyroid inflammation was at its peak, the doctor could clearly see it from the other side of the room. I was like a walking, inflamed blob.
Sugar was not helping me out, and my diet was laden with it.
Removing all refined sugars changed my energy levels and digestion. I would highly, highly suggest you remove refined sugars from your diet, whether you have an auto-immune disorder or not.
There are so many dangerous effects of sugar that will catch up with you in the future.
It has been proven time and time again that sugar is a massive contributor of inflammation.
Dairy is a bit controversial in the health/nutrition world. First off, it is not an inflammatory food for everyone.
However, I have found, through trial and error, it’s an inflammation trigger for me. And I think this is a common trigger for most with gut and/or auto-immune issues.
So, if you’re struggling with an auto-immune or thyroid condition, I would recommend removing it from your diet to see if it improves your digestion, energy, skin condition, and/or overall mood.
For me, dairy effects my digestion, energy levels, and skin, so I always avoid it.
If you can tolerate dairy, then by all means have it. Remember, everyone is completely different. Just keep an eye out for signs of inflammation & digestion issues.
Processed & Red Meat
Red meat is another inflammatory food I steer-clear from. Recent studies have shown a higher consumption of red meat is associated with higher levels of inflammation.
Another issue with the meat & dairy industry, is the meat/dairy is genetically modified. Even USDA Certified Organic foods can have small concentrations of GMOs in the product/food.
GMOs can contribute to numerous problems in the body, so avoiding them in products & foods is essential to holistically treating yourself.
Processed meats, these normally have several additives, like sugars & fats, that cause (you know where I’m going with this by now) inflammation.
What Do I Eat with Hypothyroidism?
Although red meat & dairy are the animal products I completely avoid, I do have eggs, seafood. and occasionally, free-range chicken.
I know eggs can aggravate leaky gut or hypothyroidism for some, but I’m personally not negatively effected by eggs. But remember, everyone is different.
My seafood of choice is usually salmon, prawns, or cod. I try to limit my tuna intake, due to its heavy metal content.
I’m not super strict about the whole plant-based diet. I just ensure the bulk of my diet is fruit, veg, nuts, & seeds, and then include seafood, chicken, and/or eggs on the side.
Maca is the very first superfood I fell in love with on my holistic health journey. As someone with auto-immune & thyroid issues, I swear by it.
I’ve written a full post on this powerful superfood and its incredible benefits.
This is the supplement I use daily to maintain balanced hormones levels:
Nutra Champs Organic Maca Powder: Peruvian Grown Maca Blend with Red, Black, and Yellow Roots
Celery juice is my favorite thing to consume first thing in the morning. I love it for vitality, digestion, and assisting my body in its natural detoxification process.
It also has anti-inflammatory, electrolyte-enhancing, medicinal, skin-renewing properties that provide you with an overall wellness boost.
Common problems among those with thyroid disorders are dull skin & eyes. Celery juice is a great way to improve your complexion and enhance radiance.
The Diet That Transformed My Skin
Loads of Healthy Fats!
My body works best with a higher healthy fat intake. My carbs mainly come from vegetables & oats. But that’s about it. My body doesn’t work well with most grains. It thrives off of healthy fats.
Avocados, almond butter, cashews, brail nuts, pumpkin seeds, macadamia nuts, hemp seeds, chia seeds, flaxseeds, hazelnuts, walnuts, pine nuts, avocado oil, olive oil. These are practically my best friends.
I’m not “Keto,” because I do consume a moderate amount of carbohydrates (sweet potato, brussels sprouts, beets, fruits!!!, oats; pretty much any vegetable).
I am all for people going Keto for it’s medicinal purposes and treating certain diseases holistically. But it is not for me. I can treat my condition by removing most grains, removing inflammatory foods, & supplementing with the superfoods mentioned.
To read about the Keto Diet, click here.
Collagen has incredible gut-healing benefits. The lining of your gut wall is made with collagen, so helping your body have access to this building block is key to a healthy gut.
Bone broth is a form of collagen that lines your inner gut with this “protective shield,” if you will. This helps heal & prevent leaky gut, which I’ve, again written all about here.
One of my favourite supplement brands is Ancient Nutrition. Their products are all natural and support your overall health & wellness. Their products don’t contain unnecessary additives or fillers. Just natural ingredients that boost your immunity, slow aging, and support a healthy gut.
I love Ancient Nutrition’s Salted Caramel Bone Broth, but they have it in Vanilla, Chocolate, or Unflavoured as well.
vitamin d supplement
One of the things my bloodwork showed was a deficiency in Vitamin D, which is not uncommon for those with a thyroid and/or auto-immune condition.
So, of course right off the bat, NOT knowing anything about supplements, eating/living healthy, let alone holistically, I choose the standar Vitamin D Supplements.
The ones full of unnecessary additives, artificial ingredients, sometimes even sugar or syrups!
These ingredients hinder the Vitamin’s absorption into the body. So, just by taking your average supplement, you aren’t really getting the optimal results.
ENTER ANCIENT NUTRITION’S VITAMIN D SUPPLEMENT!!!
Unlike most Vitamin D supplements (or any vitamin supplements for that matter) it is formulated without artificial ingredients, unnecessary additives, or sugars.
On top of your standard Vitamin D Supplement, this contains Organic Astragalus Extract, Organic Schisandra Extract, Chicken Bone Broth, Beef Bone Broth, Organic Lion’s Mane Mushroom, & Organic Reishi Mushroom.
These powerful ingredients enhance the Vitamin D’s absorption & function in the body. They also boost your overall energy & wellness!
Please bear in mind, everyone is different. Everyone has a different body with different needs. This is just how I naturally & holistically manage my hypothyroidism with my diet.
It is also crucial to find a style of eating that is sustainable for you! I love the way I eat, and never feel the desire to change it. This lifestyle for me is so enjoyable and satisfying. And I hope this helps or inspires you to find a diet that compliments your specific body’s needs and your specific lifestyle.
For anyone who shares the thyroid disorder realm, I have created a section on the blog dedicated to how I holistically healed my thyroid, and how you can too!