How To Kick Your Thyroid’s Ass: The Two-Month Detox Challenge!
I’m a little upset that my doctors have never mentioned it. I’m a little upset I had to happen upon this information on the internet. You’d think this sort of data would be pertinent enough to be conveyed immediately, from physician to thyroid patient. Unfortunately, things just don’t work like that. , And anyway, I didn’t even get a basic explanation of my disease itself at the time of my diagnosis. I guess I can’t expect too much. I guess the internet would be the only way I’d ever learn about this thyroid-helper gland. This week, pretty much, I’m shitting a brick, and I hope by the end of this, you will be too.
Previously, I’ve mentioned how important the gut is in managing thyroid disease. That is, if our gut is dysfunctional and is unable to absorb nutrients and our medication, we’re screwed because those essential hormones aren’t being acquired by the body. And this still holds true. However, apparently, there is another system at work in treating thyroid disease: the liver. Yes, the liver. The liver as in that thing that is supposed to detoxify the body from bacteria and pathogens and chemicals and all that alcohol we drink over the course of our lifetime. Well, aside from being the body’s detoxification system, the liver also metabolizes thyroid hormones. Crazy right??!, The liver? Thyroid hormones??, Basically, it’s a whole long, complicated, scientific process, which you can read about here, and includes some other details that I haven’t mentioned. But here’s what we need to know today: the liver is integral in both metabolizing those thyroid hormones that are released naturally via our bodies, and also those we ingest via medication. The liver regulates the systemic endocrine effects of thyroid hormones. What this means for you and I is this: if our liver is weak, our thyroid hormones are going to be unregulated and/or not absorbed or utilized. In order for our medication (and/or our body’s natural hormones) to be effective, we need a high-functioning liver.
In addition to thyroid hormone regulation, the liver also plays a role in supporting the digestive system, blood sugar regulation, and fat storage. Did you catch that last one?, Fat storage. , The liver is responsible for burning fat. However, if the liver is too busy cleansing our systems from the many toxins we ingest, it cannot be effective at burning fat. When this important organ is overwhelmed and in a constant state of filtering and toxic overload, we will have a hard time losing or maintaining weight. But why, you ask, would our liver be in this constant and over-worked state of detoxification? Well, for one, the liver must eliminate the chemicals we ingest via food on a daily basis. Things like pesticides (in every non-organic product we buy), chemicals and synthetics that have been added to food, unnatural flavorings, foods that individuals may happen to be allergic to, chemicals like fluoride and chlorine in our water and soda and juice (this includes bottled water), antibiotics and hormones in non-organic animal products, and the list goes on. Most everything in our environment is toxic at this point, so unless we’re actively and purposefully making natural choices, we’ll be unwittingly putting a toxic load on our liver and body.
Taking care of our liver can mean better thyroid hormone absorption, as well as a better chance at a steady weight. For me, this information is convincing enough. I don’t see a downside to trying to help my liver, so I’m making myself a guinea pig. I’m going to go on a two-month liver detox. And, here’s the kicker: I’m inviting you along with me!, Yes, you, my dear readers!, But before you freak out like this is gonna involve eating nothing but alfalfa sprouts and carrot juice, hear me out. A liver detox program actually requires no deprivation or fasting and you’re not doing anything extreme. It simply involves eating whole foods (of course, organic is always the best choice, if you can), tons of cleansing and nutrient-dense vegetables, nuts and seeds, good fats (especially those known to aide in liver function, like coconut oil), fruits (citrus especially), herbs and spices and digestive aids, and if you choose to eat animal products just try and make sure they’re organic (meat, eggs) or wild-caught (fish). Avoid common allergens (gluten, dairy, etc.) and starches.
What to include in your liver detox:
- Lemon water. Drink lots of water in general, but lemon has great flushing and antibacterial properties.
- Supplements. I bought the Renew Life brand Critical Liver Support, which not only contains extracts and antioxidants that are known to strengthen and detoxify, but it also contains amino acids that are utilized by the liver.
- A liver detox drink, such as, Caisse’s Tea,, which is nothing more than some more of those extracts brewed in a liquid form. , I’ll be taking it before eating in the morning, as well as before bedtime. Today was my first day trying it, and fyi, not at all gross. Actually pretty refreshing.
- More liver-friendly spices: turmeric, onions, garlic, dill.
- Whole, unprocessed foods. Plain and simple.
- Vegetable (and fruit) juices via a juicing machine. , I’m going to be adding vegetable juices to my snack repertoire. I’ll probably be relying mainly on green, non-starchy vegetables like celery (really yummy and refreshing as a juice) and sprouts.
What I’m not hoping for:
- A miracle cure-all
- Anything too difficult or challenging
- Hunger. I just can’t and won’t do it
- Any life-changing results in a two-month time frame
What I am hoping for:
- Greater immunity, even if only by a smidge
- My body’s ability to better fend off the infections to which I am prone
- A little more energy (perhaps due to my body’s ability to absorb my thyroid hormone a bit better)
So please, join me in this little (safe/not-too-complicated) experiment. I’ll keep you updated over the next two months about the state of things via a special blog which you can find here. I’ll be including pictures of what I’m eating, notes on how I feel, and any readings or research that relate. I’m hoping to update it frequently, like, as in daily, if we’re lucky. If you’re participating in the challenge, be sure to keep me updated how you’re doing too, either via the new blog, or here in the comment box, or via my email, Liz@DearThyroid.com. I started my two months today, which means you can either join in now or begin at the start of this new week. , How exciting!
Until Next Week,
Have a question, comment, story, love letter, or rant/rave to send me?: Liz@DearThyroid.com
Tags: hashimoto's disease, How To Kick Your Thyroid's Ass, hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, Liz Schau Writer, thyroid disease, thyroid food resources, thyroid nutrition, thyroid nutrition column, thyroid nutrition tips, thyroid nutritional resources