Dealing with hypothyroidism and fatigue that follows is not easy. Sometimes one feels tired to even take steps to prevent tiredness. When a friend of mine (who shall remain nameless) was first diagnosed with hypothyroidism she felt very depressed. For a year she had been suffering from symptoms that are very difficult to deal with. We got together and came up with some very simple ways in which to keep them under reasonable control:
Eat suitable fruits
On the whole fruits are very good for our health. But some fruits will prevent bloating; which is one of the symptoms of hypothyroidism.
Regularly eat: Melons, blackberries, raspberries, bananas, seedless grapes or pineapple.
Completely avoid: Pears, cherries, strawberries, apples, blueberries and prunes.
Eat foods rich in Omega 3
Salmon fish is not the only food that is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. You must also consume 1 walnut and 2 tsp of flaxseeds per day to maintain a good balance of fatty acids. You can also add spinach, beef liver and egg yolk in your diet.
Improve your sleep pattern
Dealing with insomnia is another problem with hypothyroidism. Combine lack of sleep with bloating and you have a real disaster on your hands. Relax – here’s a very effective way to maintain a reasonably good sleep pattern and beat the symptom:
- Reduce your intake of caffeine and alcohol.
- Save your favourite slow audio tracks on your mobile phone or iPod. The focal word here is “slow”. Instrumental music will also induce sleep.
- Go to bed at the same time everyday till your body-clock gets accustomed to it.
- Just before going to bed have a glass of hot milk.
- In case of lactose intolerance, you can have chamomile tea instead of milk.
- If you have any nagging worry tell yourself – “I know how to deal with this. I’ll take care of it tomorrow.”
- Settle down and listen to music till you feel really sleepy. Focus on the melody and sweetness of the music and don’t let your mind wander back to worries.
Learn positive thinking
If you still find it difficult to sleep, teach yourself to always think positive. Are you wondering, “How does positivity control insomnia?” Here’s an easy suggestion – try to associate the songs/tunes with a happy memory. Save songs that remind you of your child’s antics, fun with siblings, your honeymoon, parental love, your first romance, and such memories that will give you a warm and happy feeling. The “song-to-happy-memory” association will help you to stay positive at bedtime and improve sleep cycle.
Prevent lifestyle diseases
You have sufficient lousy symptoms to deal with when you are undergoing treatment for hypothyroidism so why add other lifestyle diseases to the list! It is best to eat sweets, very salty and fried foods in moderation so that you can prevent high blood pressure, diabetes and cholesterol. Stay with safer foodstuff like fish, low fat dairy products, brown rice, gluten free cereals like finger millet, oats, fruits and vegetables.
Check for other deficiencies
Sometimes deficiencies in vitamin B12 can also cause fatigue. A secondary effect of hypothyroid is low calcium absorption and weakening of the bones and cartilage. So it is always advisable to check your B12, calcium and D3 and thyroid levels once in six months. Also check your hemoglobin levels and take the prescribed supplements to make up for any deficiencies.
Practice yoga and pranayam
Enrol in a yoga class near your residence. Learn the breathing techniques (pranayam) and asanas that are specifically meant for thyroid imbalance and practice them under supervision of a qualified instructor. They have proved to be extremely effective in controlling the symptoms and you will even be able to reduce your medication to the minimum maintenance dose.
And yes – stop smoking and don’t miss your medication. Stay healthy and enjoy life.