Contributed by – Rachana Arya
Do you have elevated Thyroperoxidase or TPO antibodies? Having elevated antibodies is a big deal because it indicates potential damage to your thyroid gland. Also, its presence in your blood indicates that you may have inflammation and autoimmunity present.
Would it surprise you to know that it may be possible to lower these antibody levels and reduce the damage done to your thyroid gland by avoiding certain food products? It makes sense therefore to identify – and eliminate – some of the most common culprits foods that can trigger thyroid disease.
5 Foods that promote TPO antibodies and damage the Thyroid
Studies indicate that coffee when taken with or within 30 minutes of thyroid hormone medication can interfere with thyroid hormone absorption by about 30%. While coffee or caffeine has not been shown to damage the thyroid directly, it is the calcium in dairy products that can prolong the effectiveness of thyroid medications. That’s why experts recommend that you wait at least an hour after drinking coffee to take your thyroid medicine.
The most common forms of alcohol contain plant versions of the hormone estrogen, which has been identified to provoke autoimmune reactions. If alcohol is consumed frequently, it can disturb T3 levels throughout the body as well as hormone production in the thyroid. Over time these effects suppress the body’s ability to use thyroid hormone.
Supplements like iron and calcium can interfere with how your body absorbs your thyroid medications. These minerals bind to thyroid hormone and impair absorption of thyroid hormone, so these should be spaced at least an hour apart. A good rule of thumb is to take your thyroid hormone on an empty stomach, and take multivitamins and other supplements at least 4 hours later. Another supplement to watch out for is biotin.
Numerous studies establish that gluten triggers an immune response that ultimately destroys thyroid tissue. Its consumption can trigger inflammation and impair the absorption of thyroid hormone (including replacement medication). Avoid all grains containing gluten including wheat, rye, oats, and barley. Most food items that say “gluten-free” contain rice or corn and excessive consumption of these can trigger the inflammatory, thyroid antibody production response all over again.
It has been speculated that certain chemical components of soy — the isoflavones — may be problematic for thyroid hormone absorption. They can block the functioning of the enzyme thyroid peroxidase (TPO), which is vital for the thyroid gland to be able to produce T3 and T4 hormones. However, there is no clear consensus regarding how much or how little soy is safe for thyroid function. That being said, some thyroid experts recommend that there is no need to avoid soy foods altogether but eat soy products sparingly if you are at risk of thyroid disease or if you already have thyroid disease.
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