Every day I receive emails from people suffering from Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. Many of those emails have a similar thread. It reads something like this:
“I have been told by my doctor that I have Hashimoto’s Disease. I tried going gluten and dairy-free, but I’m still not feeling well. My doctor said this condition is not curable because it’s autoimmune. What do you think? Do you believe you can reverse Hashimoto’s with diet?
Yes! Of course!
I believe we can heal this condition by improving diet – I’m a living example, as well as many of my clients. You can read my story here: Radiate my Thyroid! What? No Freakin’ Way!
But, I do not believe we can heal the thyroid with diet alone. Let me explain.
Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis is a condition where the immune system attacks the thyroid gland. The resulting inflammation often leads to an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism). Hashimoto’s disease is the most common cause of hypothyroidism. It primarily affects middle-aged women, but it also affects men and women of any age, and children, too. No one is spared.
If the body’s immune system is attacking it’s own glands we need to ask, “Why, on earth, is the body trying to attack itself?”
The body normally steps into action to fight off foreign invaders like bacteria, pathogens and virus, but in the case of an autoimmune disease, the body attacks it’s own glands and organs. It’s kind of like a “self-destruct” switch is flipped and the mayhem ensues.
One of the greatest known contributors to the epidemic of autoimmune diseases in general (MS, rheumatoid arthritis, hashimoto’s, graves disease, lupus, diabetes, and others) are the environmental toxins we are exposed to that make their way into our body.
Some of these environmental toxins include metals like aluminum and mercury (in our food and in our teeth), carcinogenic waste from factories that pollute our air, land and water, and chemical substances doused onto our food supply.
Invaders in our food include:
- Pesticides, herbicides and fungicides that are liberally sprayed onto our crops to increase yields by destroying pests. Pesticides are highly toxic – they kill bugs. We’re kidding ourselves if we think we can just wash those toxins off. We cannot. The plants use soil to grow. If the soil has been contaminated with pesticides, the plant absorbs it.
- Genetically modified organisms (GMO’s) are foods and substances that were not created in nature, but designed in laboratories. The science of GMO has spliced pesticides directly into crop seeds. That means those seeds are now toxic and the plants that grow from those seeds are toxic as well.
- We’ve also genetically modified traditional whole grain crops, like wheat (corn and soy, too), and increased their protein content making them difficult, and for many folks impossible, to digest.
We’ve actually done a lot of not-so-smart things to our food supply to increase the bottom dollar. But, we’ve neglected to look at the big picture or at the end result of what exactly happens when we create and eat toxic food.
Here’s the equation: we eat food and that food becomes us; if the food is toxic, our cells become toxic. The body attacks!
It makes sense that the body, detecting toxic invaders, even though they may be our own cells created by us, would attack and destroy them. Our body is naturally self-protective.
The first step to healing Hashimoto’s is to stop eating toxic food and instead eat good old-fashioned clean organically and naturally grown food. Of course, there are many other steps when it comes to healing this condition (as well as healing the digestive system so you can actually digest food!), but this is the first step.
I said at the beginning of this blog that food was only one part of the healing process. There are other things we must consider.
There are toxic invaders inside our body that have NOTHING to do with the food we are eating.
Just as everything we eat becomes our blood, everything we think becomes our behavior. And, that includes the behavior of our cells.
Our physical body is a larger version and compilation of billions of our smaller cells. And, every thought we think has a reaction in every cell in our body.
In my practice, I’ve noticed that people suffering from Hashimoto’s (or ANY autoimmune disease) have a tendency to attack themselves.
I often hear things like:
- “I can’t believe I did that!”
- “I’m not good enough.”
- “I could have done that better.”
- “So many people are much smarter than I am.”
- “I hate my job. I can’t stand what I do for a living.” (fyi – if you hate your job, you will subconsciously hate yourself for working there)
- “I suck!”
- “Ugh, my body is horrible. I hate my ________ (insert body part)”
- “I am not worthy of love or a good relationship.”
The thyroid is the body’s great communicator. If we are attacking ourselves, either externally (through verbal communication with others) or internally (through emotional communication with ourselves), our cells listen to us and do what they are told: they attack!
According to ancient medicine, the thyroid is connected to our ability to speak and hear the truth.
The truth is you are good enough and you are worthy. We were created by the Universe, and we are perfect exactly as we are.
Once we get that, and understand it on a deep and cellular level, the attacks stop.
It takes practice to both improve your diet and your thoughts about yourself. Always remember to be patient and loving with your self as you go through the process of healing.
Get more in-depth information about Hashimoto’s, Hypothyroid or other Thyroid Disease here. Thyroid Myths You Need to Know
Andrea Beaman is an internationally renowned Holistic Health Coach, Natural Foods Chef, Speaker and Herbalist. Named one of the top 100 Most Influential Health and Fitness Experts, she is also a recipient of the Natural Gourmet Institute’s Award for Excellence in Health-Supportive Education and a Health Leadership award from The Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Since 1999, Andrea has been teaching people how to harness the body’s own preventative and healing powers using food, herbal remedies and alternative medicine.