If your energy hasn’t yet reached fun-in-the-sun levels, you’re not alone: According to a Finnish research team, many of us are battling a 40 percent dip in thyroid function — and feeling drained as a result. That’s because the hardworking gland has a tough time adapting to changes in diet, activity levels, even temperature. Luckily, we’ve got four simple ways to restore your get-up-and-go this summer. Read on to find out how!
Slow the tempo.
You’d think fast-paced, upbeat music would chase away tired- ness, but five studies suggest soothing background music does a better job, boosting energy levels by as much as 40 percent. Immunologist Kate Bauer, M.D., explains that relaxing music drops the production of thyroid-damaging stress hormones by 25 percent. Tip: Choose a tempo of 60 beats per minute or less, like Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide” or Otis Redding’s “Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay.”
Stop for a snack.
That handful of nuts, slice of cheese, or apple you just crunched could boost thyroid function, stamina, and brain power by 55 percent, Yale University researchers report. Explains endocrinologist Fara Azizi, M.D., when blood sugar stays steady between meals, your thyroid produces its strongest, most energizing hormone (T3).
Put salt on the menu.
Your thyroid needs a steady trickle of iodine to build its fatigue-fighting hormones, Boston University researchers say. If you’ve been using kosher or sea salt, switching to iodized table salt could boost thyroid function and energy level by as much as 35 percent.
Go for a squeeze.
Drinking four tall glasses of iced tea daily can boost your thyroid function by as much as 40 percent in 72 hours. The trick? Add a splash of lemon juice. That’s the word from Purdue University researchers, who say the thyroid-healing compounds in tea (polyphenols) are 80 percent better absorbed if they’re paired with citrus fruit acids.
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.