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How Thyroid Health Affects Energy Levels

thyroid

Do you struggle with fatigue and a low energy level throughout the day? Your thyroid may be to blame. That’s because the thyroid gland is responsible for producing hormones that regulate our metabolism, energy levels, and mood.

When the thyroid gland is not functioning properly, it can cause a range of unpleasant symptoms, including fatigue, weight gain, and depression. To better understand the connection between thyroid health and energy levels, as well as some tips and natural remedies for low energy, keep reading.

How Does the Thyroid Gland Affect Energy Levels?

The thyroid gland produces two hormones: thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). These hormones play a crucial role in regulating our metabolism, which affects how we produce and use energy in our body. When the thyroid gland is functioning correctly, it produces the right amount of hormones to maintain energy levels and keep our metabolism working efficiently.

An underactive thyroid gland causes a condition known as hypothyroidism. In hypothyroidism, the thyroid does not produce enough hormones, which can lead to symptoms like:

  • Fatigue
  • Lethargy
  • Depression
  • Weight gain
  • Muscle weakness
  • Joint pain
  • Dry skin

On the other hand, an overactive thyroid gland can cause a condition known as hyperthyroidism, where the thyroid overproduces the T4 and T3 hormones. Hyperthyroidism can cause symptoms like:

  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue

Diet to Increase Energy

The best way to support thyroid health and energy levels is by maintaining a balanced, healthy diet. Iodine, for example, is a critical mineral that our thyroids need to work properly. Developed countries have virtually eliminated thyroid disease caused by iodine deficiency by adding iodine to salt and other common foods. Most people get adequate iodine through their diet, and supplementation is not necessary and usually not recommended. In fact, overconsumption of iodine can cause hyperthyroidism. For those with hypothyroidism, good food sources of iodine include seaweed, fish, and dairy products.

Zinc and selenium are two other minerals that are involved in regulating thyroid health. Good food sources of zinc and selenium include brazil nuts, seafood, eggs, oysters, beef, pumpkin seeds, and lentils.

Whether or not your low energy levels are caused by an over or underactive thyroid, making the right dietary choices is essential to support healthy energy levels throughout the day.

Natural Remedies for Low Energy

Dietary and lifestyle choices that are recommended to support healthy, sustained energy levels throughout the day include:

  • Avoiding fad or crash diets with significant calorie restrictions
  • Eating several small meals throughout the day, instead of three large meals (for some people, eating a large lunch is associated with an energy crash, so individuals who frequently experience fatigue in the afternoon might experiment with smaller meals and snacks instead of one large lunch)
  • Drinking water throughout the day
  • Avoiding or limiting alcohol
  • Avoiding caffeine after 2pm
  • A balanced diet that includes proteins, complex carbohydrates, fruits, and vegetables

Getting enough vitamin D is also crucial for energy production. Unlike many other vitamins, the best source of natural vitamin D is exposure to UVB rays from natural sunlight. There is a heightened risk of vitamin D deficiency during the winter because more people spend increased time indoors; among other symptoms, vitamin D deficiency can cause fatigue, lethargy, and energy levels. As part of a balanced diet, try to prioritize foods that contain vitamin D, including milk, yogurt, cheese, egg yolks, fatty fish, and beef liver.

Now that you understand how thyroid health affects energy levels, read about selecting the best thyroid supplement.