Avoid these foods if you have an underactive thyroid
Hypothyroidism is a condition that affects 4.6 percent of Americans aged 12 years and older. While most cases are mild, this puts the hormonal disorder in the same list as other chronic diseases like epilepsy and severe gum disease, which affect 1.2 and 9 percent of adults in the U.S., respectively, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
A person is said to have hypothyroidism when his thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough hormones to meet his body’s needs. The thyroid gland, in particular, is responsible for metabolism and heart rate, as well as other vital body functions. If a person’s thyroid levels are low, it can result in symptoms, such as dry skin, irregular menstrual periods for women, slowed heart rate, goiter, and weight gain.
The disease is more common among older people, and women are more likely to have the condition. The most common cause for hypothyroidism is Hashimoto’s disease, an autoimmune disease wherein the immune system attacks the thyroid gland, resulting in its inflammation and inability to produce hormones. Other causes include thyroiditis, an inflammation of the thyroid; congenital hypothyroidism, where the thyroid isn’t fully developed in newborns; and certain medicines and pre-existing medical conditions.
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