Are you struggling with hypothyroidism and losing weight? But, no matter what you try, the pounds won’t budge. So instead, the scale keeps creeping up. You probably have tried every diet out there, even some you don’t want to tell anyone about because they are so bizarre and crazy.
But you were willing to try anything! And, yet, here you are, still trying to figure out what is wrong with you because no diet, fast, or exercise program has done anything to help you lose weight or feel any better.
So, what gives?
After RAI treatment for my Graves’, I became sicker and heavier. So, a few years ago, after visiting several doctors to find relief for my symptoms and a way to stop or slow down the weight gain with no results, a friend who has MS suggested I see a functional medicine doctor.
After finding a doctor I felt fit my needs, I needed one who could also write prescriptions due to my need for thyroid replacement hormones.
After my initial consultation, which lasted almost 3 hours, he tested everything: blood, urine, and saliva. The results from the tests he had done were eye-opening.
He explained how the build-up of toxins and chemicals had created this toxic overload in my body, starting with my thyroid. Since the autoimmune disease was never treated, just the thyroid, I still suffered from those symptoms. Then, he laid out a plan. I received a three-inch thick 3-ring binder that covered all the steps I needed to take to heal.
My Path to Losing Weight and Healing
Here’s what he shared with me: The endocrine glands are the “masters of metabolism.” They direct bodily activities by releasing chemical messengers called hormones into the bloodstream.
These glands include:
Parathyroid Pancreas Ovaries and Testes
Plus, several other organs contain some Endocrine Tissues
The hormones in these glands regulate our mood, metabolism, sexual function, growth, and development, plus several other functions. My doctor shared that The Neuroendocrine Theory states that we age because our hormones decline, rather than the reverse assumption that our hormones decline because we age.
Most aging-related diseases have at their basis some hormone dysfunction: imbalances, insufficient levels, or hormone resistance.
Food, activity levels, stress, environmental factors, and many drugs can alter the balance and effectiveness of your hormones.
Furthermore, some cells become resistant to your hormones. The best-known hormone resistance is that of insulin resistance, found in diabetics. However, cells may become resistant to other hormones as well. He explained how the chemicals, toxins, and borderline lead poisoning in my body (a total surprise) made it impossible for me to feel well, let alone lose weight.
He had pages of recommendations for me to follow. First, he clarified that I needed to clean up my diet and remove as many toxins as possible from my body and environment to improve. This clean-up included cleaning supplies, cosmetics, shampoos, soaps, water bottles, plastic containers, and processed foods.
He advised me to look at every aspect of my life and eliminate all the toxins I could. One of the main areas he targeted was my diet. He discussed the chemicals in our food supply that had most likely contributed to my autoimmune thyroid disease, plus the family history of my grandmother having a goiter removed.
He bluntly told me I wouldn’t get better if I didn’t follow his plan. And it mainly had to do with removing many of the chemicals in my food, body, and environment affecting how my hormones interacted. His plan included organic beef and chicken, organic fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans, and nuts.
The program also stated no Teflon pans, plastics, processed food, or fast food. He explained that if it’s not a whole food, it most likely has chemicals added that are harmful to my endocrine system.
After researching these chemicals, he was talking about; I discovered they had a name: Obesogens. These chemicals are found in most common household products, food additives, cosmetics, plastics, pesticides, and food and water supply.
This class of chemicals mimics hormones to disrupt your metabolism and cause obesity by interfering with the body’s natural ability to regulate weight. Once these chemicals are inside us, even low doses can negatively affect us.
How do obesogens impact our hypothyroidism and weight loss efforts?
Obesogens impact our health and contribute to obesity and other health problems by disrupting the body’s natural hormone balance. This hormone disruption can increase fat storage, insulin resistance, and other metabolic problems.
There is no sure way to avoid all obesogens, but you can minimize exposure by eating organic foods, avoiding processed foods, and using natural household products.
Another way obesogens can promote obesity is by increasing fat cells in the body or by making existing fat cells larger. Obesogens can also interfere with the body’s ability to regulate its weight.
Obesogens can affect our health in several ways. For example, they can increase fat storage, disrupt metabolism, and increase the risk of morbid obesity and diseases such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Obesogens also disrupt the endocrine system, leading to various health problems, including reproductive issues like infertility, miscarriages, low birth weights, and infant development issues, including the brain and reproductive system.
How can we avoid consuming obesogens?
There are several ways we can minimize our exposure to obesogens. First, we can lower exposure to them by choosing foods that are grown without the use of pesticides and other chemicals. We can also support businesses that are committed to avoiding the use of obesogens.
Avoiding processed foods and eating more whole foods can help reduce exposure to obesogens. Choosing products made without plastic or with BPA-free labels can also help. Avoiding personal care products with phthalates and choosing furniture and electronics without flame retardants can also reduce exposure to these chemicals.
Here are the most common and disruptive Obesogens:
BPA-bisphenol A– BPA mimics the structure and function of the hormone estrogen. It also interacts with hormone receptors, like your thyroid, altering their function. Low thyroid is linked to weight gain, and out-of-balance estrogen and progesterone contribute to increased waist circumference, similar to during menopause. I also didn’t know that shopping receipts contain BPA, so now I avoid them.
My doctor also observed that consuming fresh, whole foods automatically limits BPA exposure. Plus, it’s worth noting that many BPA-free products have just replaced BPA with bisphenol-S (BPS) or bisphenol-F (BPF), which aren’t any better for our health or hormones.
BPA is a common ingredient in plastics and can be found in food and beverage containers.
PCBs-polychlorinated biphenyls- This group of manufactured chemicals has been linked to cancer and several other non-cancer severe health issues, including your immune, reproductive, nervous, and endocrine systems. They are used in electrical equipment, lubricants, hydraulic fluids, and plasticizers. They were banned in 1979 but are still present in many pre-1979 products.
Phthalates are not a single chemical but a family of chemicals linked to variations in sex hormone levels, problems with genital development, and low sperm count. As a result, these chemicals have been banned from products and toys for children under 3.
Phthalates are often used in cosmetics and personal care products.
Many cosmetics contain obesogens, which can be absorbed through the skin. Cosmetics that contain obesogens can include makeup, lotions, and hair products.
Microplastics- Microplastics are tiny particles of plastics that have made their way into our lakes, rivers, and oceans, contaminating our food and water. Plus, much of our food comes wrapped in plastic, making these tiny particles break into our food. Over time these particles leach off BPA and phthalates adding to our toxic overload.
Besides, obesogens are found in plastics, including food storage. Plastics can leach obesogens into food, which people can then consume.
Pesticides and Herbicides- These common chemicals can act as obesogens. Pesticides and herbicides are often used in agriculture. Unfortunately, they can be found in many food products and cause cancer, endocrine disruption, reproductive issues, neurotoxicity, kidney and liver damage, birth defects, and developmental changes. We have all seen the ads for attorneys representing victims of pesticide exposure.
FYI- Anytime I buy fresh produce, I soak it in cold water and a cup of white vinegar. The vinegar dissolves the grime and toxins so they can be rinsed off.
Fluoride– is known for slowing thyroid function. It was given to women in the 1950s to treat an overactive thyroid; however, you will have trouble finding anyone willing to admit fluoride can cause serious health problems. I researched fluoride when writing this post and had trouble finding anything negative about it. However, they mentioned how high doses for an extended period could weaken your bones and cause tooth discolorization.
There was no mention that you are ingesting fluoride if you live in the United States and drink tap or treated water. Statistics show that by drinking 5-8 glasses of treated water daily, you ingest enough fluoride to slow your thyroid function, leading to weight gain.
Heavy metals- like lead, mercury, Cadmium, and arsenic, plus the chemicals in air pollution, also add to our toxic load. Unfortunately, you may have excessive heavy metals in your body and not know it. For example, when my functional medicine doctor ran my blood tests (he had them done at a private laboratory), the doctor at the lab contacted him, concerned about the high level of lead in my body. Both doctors addressed the need to determine where I was coming in contact with the lead.
Then, that summer, the city replaced the water pipe from the street to our house; we were one of 26 houses in our town that still had lead water pipes running up to our home. I don’t know if I would have never figured that out!
Food preservatives- including bromates in bread, nitrates or nitrites in processed meats, MSG, dyes, and artificial sweeteners all harm your body and hormones. The body’s detoxification systems have difficulty processing synthetic chemicals that don’t occur in nature. All these toxins and chemicals clog up the natural hormone balance in your body, making it difficult for your hormones to regulate your body’s functions.
Many processed foods contain obesogens, including some that may surprise you. Obesogens are often added to processed foods to improve their texture or taste. They can also be found in processed foods high in sugar or fat.
Some everyday household cleaning products contain obesogens. For example, obesogens can be found in laundry detergents, dishwashing detergents, and cleaning products. These chemicals include ethylene glycol, sodium hypochlorite, ammonia, mono butyl acetate, and trisodium phosphate. In addition, all-purpose cleaners can irritate the eyes, skin, nose, and throat.
Flame retardants are used in various products, including furniture, electronics, insulation, carpet padding, and other products.
Studies show flame retardants are accumulating in humans and the environment. These chemicals may disrupt brain development and thyroid function; affect learning, memory, and attention; reduce IQ and sperm quality; and mimic estrogen.
The Good News: Losing Weight With Hypothyroidism Is Possible
I have probably just depressed you, but I want you to know that changing your lifestyle can improve your health and increase your weight loss efforts. And it will be worth the effort!
You will notice that once you have removed these toxins and chemicals from your diet, you start to notice your body feeling bogged down and sluggish after eating processed foods. You will also notice the taste of preservatives and artificial sweeteners after you haven’t eaten them for a while.
I understand if you are questioning what I have shared with you, but I have lost 55 pounds and am much better after following my doctors’ guidelines.
It didn’t happen overnight, but it was worth the effort. The best marker of how far I have come health-wise: Since I have an autoimmune disease, I was considered high risk for Covid19. So I was naturally concerned when I contracted Covid-19. However, my only symptoms were a slight runny nose, a mild headache, fatigue, and diarrhea for a few days. That was it! I can’t tell you how blessed I feel to have come through the virus with so few symptoms.
That experience has me convinced more than ever to guard my health in every way possible. If you need help rebalancing your hormones, clearing toxins, losing weight, and regaining your health, look at the Hypothyroidism Solution.
I wish I had known about this information while working to regain my health. In addition, there is a cookbook, an ebook to help increase your energy, tips to ease insomnia, and a stress-releasing MP3. All are focused on rebalancing, clearing, healing, and relieving all the crazy symptoms of hypothyroidism.
Take the time to care for yourself!
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