Energy levels suffering? Weight packing on? It could be your thyroid. The goods news is, you can help boost your thyroid right at home. UCLA researchers say giving your winter-weary thyroid a little tune-up can heighten your health, happiness, and focus — and double slimming too!
Sprinkle on nuts.
Adding 1⁄3 cup of nuts to your breakfast can boost your thyroid’s production of energizing hormones, leading to a 55 percent uptick in focus, mood, and stamina, four studies suggest. Nutrition researcher Silvia Cozzolino, Ph.D., explains that nuts are rich in selenium and zinc, nutrients your thyroid needs to function at its peak.
Slice a kiwi.
Going long periods without food makes us cranky, and your thyroid doesn’t like it either! That’s the word from a Canadian research team, who say steadying blood sugar by enjoying a small snack between lunch and dinner can keep your thyroid 66 percent more active, cutting your risk of tiredness and weight gain in half.
Seaweed gomasio is a yummy low-sodium salt substitute made from roasted sesame seeds and dried seaweed, and using one teaspoon daily in place of table salt could boost thyroid function by 35 percent, Japanese scientists say. Turns out this flavor-booster brims with iodine, a key building block of energizing, fat-burning thyroid hormones. Try this one from Eden ($6.95, Amazon).
Relax your face.
A steady stream of the stress hormone cortisol makes your thyroid sluggish and weary, says Richard Shames, M.D., author of Thyroid Mind Power ($11.59, Amazon). Your best defense: A five-minute facial massage! Research in the Journal of Physical Therapy Science suggests that facial massages are so calming, they cut cortisol release in half, increasing thyroid function and energy by 55 percent if you do them twice daily! To do: Firmly massage along your forehead, cheekbones, and jawline.
Get some sun.
You can energize your thyroid, shake off tiredness and speed metabolism by 25 percent just by soaking up 20 minutes of sunshine daily, suggests research in the International Journal of Health Sciences. Turns out the vitamin D-3 your skin makes when it’s exposed to UV light activates the enzymes that make thyroid hormones!
This article originally appeared in our print magazine.