The Thyroid Diet: Heal Your "Master Gland" and Balance Your Hormones Enjoying Delicious Food

Kelley Herring

10 Jan 2020

Thyroid Diet Plan

This means that millions of people (possibly even you) are living with the symptoms of a thyroid disorder and either have no idea what’s wrong… or they have learned to live with fatigue, aches pains, and digestive issues as if they are “normal”.

The most common types of thyroid illness are Grave’s disease, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, goiter and thyroid nodules. And while prescription medications can certainly mask the symptoms, the thyroid diet is one of the best approaches for treatment and a permanent cure.

The advantage of a thyroid diet is that it can be helpful for any type of thyroid disorder. There’s no need for a specific protocol hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism.

No matter what type of thyroid condition you may have, the thyroid diet helps to normalize your entire system, helping to eliminate not only the symptoms of the disease but also the cause!

What is the Thyroid and How Does it Affect Your Health?

Thyroid glandThe thyroid is a butterfly-shaped, ductless gland that sits at the base of your neck, just below your Adam’s apple. This gland is responsible for secreting hormones that regulate growth and development through the rate of metabolism.

And while this small gland might not look like much, the hormones it secretes affect almost every system and cell in your body. If your thyroid isn’t functioning properly, neither will you.

A healthy thyroid gland releases hormones called T3 (liothyronine) and T4 (levothyroxine) to help regulate your metabolism, balance energy levels, maintain a healthy weight and dictate how fast or slow your brain, heart, muscles and liver work.

Too little thyroid hormone in your blood (hypothyroidism) and everything slows down. You may notice flagging energy, unexpected weight gain and very dry skin.

If your thyroid is producing too much thyroid hormone (hyperthyroidism), everything in your body speeds up. You may notice jitteriness, sudden weight loss, loss of strength and hair loss.

The thyroid doesn’t work on its own. The hormonal output of your thyroid is adjusted by a gland in your brain called the pituitary. In turn, another part of your brain, called the hypothalamus, sends information to the pituitary gland.

As you can see, there is a chain of command at work. And any one of these systems can be disrupted by environmental toxins, stress, poor diet and (especially) gut issues.

Most Low Thyroid Issues are Autoimmune (and Leaky Gut is at the Root!)

While many people are aware that they have thyroid condition, most people don't realize that 90% of the time, thyroid disease is caused by autoimmunity! (ref)

Autoimmunity is a condition that causes the immune system to attack your body’s own healthy tissues. And research shows that ‘leaky gut syndrome’ is often at the root of this immune system malfunction.

There are three important factors in the development of autoimmune disease:

  1. Genetics - Let’s say your grandmother had rheumatoid arthritis. Because you share a genetic code, you have a stronger likelihood of developing this or another autoimmune disease.
  2. Environment (or Stressors) – Just because you are genetically predisposed to a disease does not mean you will get it. Genetics may load the gun. Your environment pulls the trigger. It is your diet, exposure to toxins and stressors that awaken dormant DNA and activate disease.Leaky Gut and Thyroid
  3. Gut Health – An extremely important factor in the function of your immune system is the integrity of your gut. If your gut isn’t healthy, you cannot be healthy. Bloating, constipation, diarrhea, flatulence, food allergies, rashes, brain fog and mental health disturbances are all symptoms of poor gut health.

Medications like antibiotics, NSAID pain relievers and birth control pills can destroy your healthy intestinal microflora, leaving you vulnerable to disease.

Leaky gut syndrome is a condition that often occurs as a result of chronic inflammation in the gut, whether it is due to medications, poor diet, digestive disease or all three.

Chronic inflammation in the gut causes the intestinal lining to become more porous than it should be, allowing bits of undigested food, yeast, and other toxins to enter your bloodstream.

This activates the immune system and can lead to autoimmune illness, including rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, Crohn’s, chronic fatigue and more. (ref, ref)

Eliminating Thyroid-Harming Foods 

Unfortunately, there are many things with which we come into contact on a daily basis that can disrupt thyroid function. Let's take a look...

Gluten harms the thyroidGluten

Celiac disease is closely associated with the development of thyroid disease. And even those without celiac disease can have a negative reaction to gluten that triggers thyroid disease.

The molecular structure of gliadin (a protein found in gluten) closely resembles that of the thyroid gland. If you have a leaky gut, gliadin is more likely to enter your bloodstream, where it’s flagged for destruction. Due to the molecular similarities, the antibodies attacking gliadin will also attack your thyroid tissue.

If you have autoimmune thyroid disease and you eat foods that contain gluten, your immune system will continue to attack your thyroid. (ref)


There is a protein called A1 casein found in cow’s milk. This protein can cause leaky gut syndrome, thereby increasing inflammation in the thyroid gland and impeding its function. Unfortunately, this protein is also in goat’s and sheep’s milk, so these should be avoided, as well. The only exception for dairy may be camel milk, otherwise, opt for healthy dairy-free milks like unprocessed coconut milk or homemade almond milk. (ref, ref, ref)


Most soy produced in the United States and Canada is genetically modified. It also contains a pesticide called glyphosate that disrupts the body’s ability to detoxify endocrine-disrupting chemicals and carcinogens. A study published in the journal, Toxicology, posits that those who eat GMOs may be more susceptible to the development of chronic disease, including thyroid disease. (ref) Another concern is that soy may have an adverse effect on the absorption of synthetic thyroid hormone. (ref)

OxalatesSpinach contains oxalates which may harm the thyroid

Oxalates are chemical compounds found in many green vegetables and other foods that are considered healthy. Your body also produces them as a waste product.

If your digestive tract does not contain enough healthy bacteria to break down oxalates before they can reach other parts of your body, you may be at increased risk of inflammatory, allergic and autoimmune conditions. (ref)

Foods high in oxalates include spinach, chard, beets, sweet potatoes and nuts, so its easy to see how eating a "Paleo diet" or an Autoimmune Paleo Diet without addressing an underlying oxalate issue could keep you ill or even make your thyroid condition worse.

If you experience joint pain, burning with urination or bowel movements, kidney stones oxalate sensitivity should be suspected. You can test for oxalate sensitivity with a simple urine test (See our free guide: 20 Thyroid Tests Your Doctor Hasn't Performed and Should - for more information)


These are chemicals believed to cause a goiter by acting directly on the thyroid gland as well as altering the thyroid’s regulatory mechanisms, peripheral metabolism and release of thyroid hormones.

There are many drugs that are well known goitrogens. If you are taking any prescription medication, do a search to find out if the medication has known effects on the thyroid. If so, seek other alternatives or ways to stop taking medications entirely.

Certain healthy foods (including cruciferous veggies, sweet potatoes and strawberries, to name a few) also contain goitrogens. However, these may not be problematic unless a deficiency in iodine or selenium is present. (ref) What’s more, cooking foods that contain goitrogens may help to decrease their goitrogenic effect. (ref)

Environmental Toxins & Infections That Can Harm the Thyroid

black tea is a source of flur=oride that harms the thyroidFluoride

A study done on children living in a New Delhi neighborhood with an average water fluoride level of 4.37 ppm showed evidence of clinical hypothyroidism directly attributed to the fluoride. They also found borderline low free T3 levels among all children exposed to fluoridated water.(ref)

In addition to avoiding fluoridated water, also be sure to avoid fluoridated toothpaste, processed foods, pesticides, pans made with Teflon (PFOA/PFTE) as well as foods naturally high in fluoride, including green and black teas. (ref)


Research has shown that mercury -  the second most deadly poison known to man after plutonium -  accumulates in thyroid tissue. And the more mercury exposure one has, the more mercury is deposited in the thyroid gland.

Mercury interferes with many of the minerals needed to produce thyroid hormones and convert T4 to T3 (including zinc, magnesium, and selenium).

Eliminating amalgam fillings and reducing body burden of mercury through detoxification and avoidance of mercury-contaminated foods is an important step to regaining thyroid function. (ref)

Environmental Toxins: Pesticides, Perchlorate, Phthalate & PCBs

The pesticides widely used on conventional produce are well known goitrogens and organochlorine compounds that hamper thyroid function. Choosing organic foods - especially for the "Dirty Dozen" is vital for thyroid health.

Likewise, the chemical perchlorate – a component of rocket fuel, which has contaminated groundwater across the United States – interferes with the thyroid’s ability to uptake iodine. This prevents the thyroid from making adequate amounts of hormones that regulate metabolism.

Similar to perchlorate, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are found in high levels in farm-raised fish.

MoldMold Illness and  Thyroid Diet

Studies show that mold exposure triggers inflammation, which can lead to the development of autoimmune disease. Exposure to Aspergillus is directly associated with hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.(ref)

For those sensitive to molds, its important to avoid or minimize mycotoxins (mold toxins) in the diet. While many foods develop molds as a result of storage (ie - grains stored in silos; coffee beans), some foods also naturally contain molds such as beer, wine, cheese, etc. You can easily eliminate all foods that are potentially contaminated with mycotoxins from your Meal Genius Meal Plan with one easy click.  

Bacteria & Viruses

Infections are frequently cited as a major environmental factor involved in subacute thyroiditis and autoimmune thyroid diseases.

Consider the “Big Three”:

  1. Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) – The cause of mononucleosis, this virus is also commonly linked with the development of Hashimoto’s disease. A 2015 Polish study found the Epstein-Barr virus in the thyroid cells of 80 percent of people with Hashimoto’s and 63 percent of people with Graves’, while controls did not have EBV present in their thyroid cells.(ref)
  2. Yersinia Enterocolitica – This bacterium is found in contaminated food and water. If your gut is healthy, your system will fight off the bacterium and you will only experience the symptoms of mild food poisoning or a “stomach bug”. However, in some cases, Yersinia takes hold in the gut, persisting without GI symptoms and triggering Hashimoto’s disease.
  3. Helicobacter Pylori – This opportunistic bacterium, which is widely known to be a contributing cause of stomach ulcers, has also been linked with the development of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

In addition to these, Lyme (Borrelia), Epstein Barr (Mono), Blastocystis hominis, Candida albicans, periodontal infections, and other latent infections could be a "root cause" of your thyroid dysfunction.

Thyroid Diet and SIBOSIBO

While small intestinal bacteria overgrowth (SIBO)  isn't technically an infection, research shows this overgrowth can be a trigger for (or worsen) Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis.

In fact, a 2007 study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism found that about 50% of people with hypothyroidism have SIBO. (ref)

More concerning still was that the use of standard thyroid medication - levothyroxine - has been found to contribute to the development of SIBO. (ref)

If you have SIBO, addressing this imbalance through a Low FODMAP Diet and a targeted supplement protocol will be an important step to improve your thyroid function.

Deficiencies That Can Harm the Thyroid

Low Stomach Acid

Low stomach acid (hypochlorhydria) increases intestinal permeability, inflammation, and infection. Studies show a strong link between low stomach acid and autoimmune thyroid disease. (ref)

Nutrient DeficienciesVitamin D deficiency

Selenium deficiency can make the body more vulnerable to illnesses caused by biochemical, nutritional, or infectious stresses, due to its role in immune function. Adequate selenium intake supports the synthesis of thyroid hormone and metabolism while protecting the thyroid gland from damage due to excessive iodine exposure.(ref)

Magnesium is an essential mineral responsible for converting inactive T4 thyroid hormone into its active T3 form. A deficiency in this mineral has been shown to cause goiter. Without magnesium, many of the thyroid enzymes responsible for making thyroid hormone would not function properly. (ref)

Vitamin D deficiency is common among those with Hashimoto’s and a deficiency has been correlated with the presence of antithyroid antibodies.

In fact, a study published in the journal Thyroid found that 92% of Hashimoto’s patients were deficient in vitamin D! (ref)

Another study published in Endocrine Practice found that low vitamin D levels were associated with higher thyroid antibodies and worse disease prognosis.(ref)

Other nutrient deficiences linked with low thyroid and autoimmune disease include thiamine, magnesium, ferritin and vitamin B12.

Now that we've covered the foods, toxins, infections and deficiencies that can harm the thyroid, let's take a look at how you can... Click here to subscribe

Heal Your Thyroid with a Personalized Thyroid Diet

A thyroid diet is based around ancestral eating and filled with grain-free, nutrient-dense foods that help your endocrine system to heal.  But keep in mind that...

An Effective Thyroid Diet Will Be the One that
Addresses YOUR Personal Root Cause/s.

This means uncovering your food sensitivities and allergies, healing leaky gut and optimizing digestion, eliminating toxins that may be present in your enviroment or body (ie - mold, teflon, mercury), eliminating harmful food compounds (like gluten and oxalates), determining your optimum macronutrient ratio for blood sugar control and addressing any nutrient deficiencies and underlying infections.

Here, are three common diets – the Basic Thyroid Diet, the Elimination Diet, and the AIP Diet - that can help heal the thyroid and retrain immune system.

thyroid diets table

In a moment, I'll show you how these diets can be combined with other elements to create a nutritional protocol that's right for YOU!

But first...

Kelley Herring - Founder Meal GeniusPlease Allow Me to Introduce Myself...

My name is Kelley Herring.

I’m the author of hundreds of articles and more than a dozen books (including a series published by McGraw Hill) on the power of foods to promote health and protect against disease.

And while my background is nutritional biochemistry, my true passion is translating nutritional science into practical solutions.

Over the years, I’ve created more than two thousand healing recipes and menus.

But the truth is that recipes alone are not very practical... what you need is a plan!

Your Secret to Success on the Thyroid Diet is a Meal Plan

Eating is something we all do every day…

Yet, with never-ending to-do lists, making a plan for the foods we’re going to buy and prepare is often the last thing on our mind. So we “wing it” at the store. We eat out more than we should. And we end up eating the same foods over and over again at home.

Our health suffers for the sake of convenience. We spend more time in the kitchen. Make more trips to the store. And more of the food we buy goes to waste.

A meal plan and shopping list creates order from this chaos. It reduces stress, saves you time and money and helps you enjoy the very best of health!

The only problem is that…

Tired Mom Needs a Meal PlanPlanning & Preparing Healthy Meals Can Feel Like a Full-Time Job

Even for the most organized home cook, it is a huge challenge to create new meal plans and shopping lists week after week.

If you have to plan around allergies, intolerances and other health concerns (or if you wish to follow a “special diet” like the thyroid diet) the time and effort can be overwhelming.

Not to mention planning for an entire family!

And unfortunately most “done-for-you” meal plans don’t cater to YOUR needs…

One-Size-Fits-All Does NOT Work When it Comes to Your Diet!

We all have different budgets for food… different sized families and appetites… different likes and dislikes… and different health concerns to manage.

But our differences don’t end there, because…

Each one of us is biochemically and genetically unique.

This is why two people can follow the same diet with very different results. It is also why a healthy food for one person… could actually make YOU sick!

So, why should your meal plan be the same as everyone else’s?

It shouldn’t, of course, and that is why…

I Dedicated My Career to Create a State-of-the-Art (and Easy to Use) Personalized Meal Planning Solution…

My goal was to bring nutritional science into the kitchen… to take the guesswork out of meal planning... and to make it easy (and delicious) to follow even the strictest dietary protocol.

I wanted to deliver a program you can use to create meal plans that account for your taste preferences… your health concerns… your allergies and intolerances… and scaled to the exact number of servings (and appetites) in your family!

A plan that provides the most delicious organic meals – at better-than-drive-through prices – while you spend LESS time in the kitchen than you do today!

I never thought it would be easy, but I had no idea how difficult it would be. I thought it might take a few years. It has taken a decade.

But the good news is that my hard work is to your benefit. And the result of those efforts is a solution to easily create perfectly personalized meal plans for YOU!

Meal Genius - Mr. MenuIntroducing Meal Genius®: The Future of Meal Planning… Today!

It all begins with a simple Meal Plan Personalization Quiz.

Answer a series of simple questions to let Meal Genius know how many people you’re cooking for and any special diet or nutritional protocol you want to follow (there are more than 20 to choose from).

Two minutes is all it takes to select your answers and…

Create a 100% Personalized Thyroid Meal Plan to Suit YOUR Unique Dietary Needs

Click “Submit” and Meal Genius instantly goes to work to create a delicious meal plan and shopping list with every detail personalized to the specifications YOU select.

If you choose a thyroid diet meal plan, here are just a few ways you can customize your plan:

  • Low Carb AIP Thyroid Meal Plan
  • Low Oxalate Thyroid Meal Plan
  • Elimination Diet Thyriod Meal Plan
  • Low Mycotoxin Thyroid Meal Plan 
  • Freezer-Friendly Thyroid Meal Plan
  • Low FODMAP Thyroid Meal Plan

Of course, you can easily change your plan at any time (and as often as you like)!

With our easy Recipe Editor you can even add your own family favorites and Meal Genius will calculate the nutrition for you!

And speaking of “nutrition”, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. That’s why…

Every Food, Recipe and Menu in Meal Genius Includes the Amounts and Percentages of 45 Key Nutrients!

We proudly display the full nutrition information, macronutrient ratios, breakdown of fats, servings of fruits and vegetables, and even the vital micronutrients contained in each and every meal in your plan.

Your plan also provides you with a detailed nutrition report on 40+ nutrients every day!

And with more than 500 thyroid-friendly meals and recipes in the system, you can be sure that your personalized plan will offer as many delicious options as your heart desires!

Here is a Sample of What You Will Enjoy!

Tex Mex Turkey Boats
Tex Mex Turkey Boats
Grass-Fed Skirt Steak with Chimi
Grass-Fed Skirt Steak with Chimi
Citrus Cilantro Salmon with Carrot Slaw
Citrus Cilantro Salmon with Carrot Slaw
Guacamole Stuffed Chicken with Asparagus
Guacamole Stuffed Chicken with Asparagus
Coconut Shrimp with Kale-Avocado Salad
Coconut Shrimp with Kale-Avocado Salad
Seared Scallops with Arugula Avocado Salad
Seared Scallops with Arugula Avocado Salad
Paleo Beef Stroganoff with Broccoli Raab
Paleo Beef Stroganoff with Broccoli Raab
Cashew Chicken with Cauliflower Rice
Cashew Chicken with Cauliflower Rice
Paleo Nachos
Paleo Nachos
Cobb Salad
Cobb Salad
Braised Chicken with Olives & Brussels Sprouts
Braised Chicken with Olives & Brussels Sprouts
Pepper Steak with Cauli Rice
Pepper Steak with Cauli Rice

What's more, your plan comes with all the comfort foods you love... and none of the inflammatory grains or blood-sugar spiking carbs you don't! Hearty breads, pancakes, waffles, cakes, cookies, brownies and more…

You will never feel like you're missing out on your old favorites...

Chocolate Chia Pudding
Chocolate Chia Pudding
Paleo Chocolate Belgian Waffles
Paleo Chocolate Belgian Waffles
Not-Peanut CookiesNot-Peanut Cookies
Not-Peanut Cookies
Pumpkin Spice Latte
Pumpkin Spice Latte
Coconut Creme Brulee
Coconut Creme Brulee
Coconut Butter Brownies
Coconut Butter Brownies
Paleo Waffles
Paleo Waffles
Mint Chip Ice Cream
Mint Chip Ice Cream

Getting started with your personalized Thyroid Diet Meal Plan can help you:

Best of all, your personalized Thyroid Diet Meal Plan takes only minutes to create!


And that’s not all, because Meal Genius offers far more than just meal planning…

Healing U: Your Definitive Guide to Nutrition, Disease Prevention & Effortless Weight Loss Using the Power of Healing Foods

As a member of Meal Genius, you’ll also receive a FREE subscription to Healing U – an indispensable educational series for home cooks and health nuts alike.

You’ll enjoy dozens of how-to Kitchen GuidesHealing Fact SheetsNutritional Protocols and tools to save you time in the kitchen, help you find the healthiest products, and most importantly to improve your health – one delicious bite at a time.

Thyroid Diet - Meal Genius
Leaky Gut Diet - Meal Genius
AIP Diet for Thyroid - Meal Genius
Elimination Diet - Meal Genius
Leaky Gut and Gluten- Meal Genius
SIBO - Meal Genius
Boost Nutrient Absorption - Meal Genius
Gelatin for Thyroid - Meal Genius
Dairy Substitutes - Meal Genius
Guide to Healthy Meats - Meal Genius
Guide to Fats and Oils - Meal Genius
Instant Pot Cooking Guide - Meal Genius

What is it Worth for You to Achieve All this and More?

You could easily pay $500 for a custom meal plan from a nutritionist or functional medicine doctor.

For your money, you would likely receive a two-week meal plan… a dozen decent recipes... and a set of dietary “guidelines.”

I am NOT dismissing the value these professionals provide. The right doctor, nutritionist or health coach can offer you priceless healing insight. They can help uncover the causes of illness and create a protocol that’s perfect for you!

But when it comes to meal planning – they offer a fraction of the value you get from Meal Genius

Two minutes with Meal Genius generates
More meal-planning “horsepower” than a Team of people could create in two weeks!

It’s like having a personal nutritionist and recipe developer working just for you. And if you’re already seeing a natural health practitioner, it makes their recommendations even more valuable!

Meal Genius is a tool that turns complex nutritional protocols into practical (and delicious) solutions.

It brings the clinic to the kitchen and translates the prescription pad… to your plate!

We could easily charge the $500 you might pay for a custom meal plan.

And when you consider the decade of extraordinary effort, a million dollars in development costs, and what it took to create, test and photograph more than a thousand recipes…

It would be worth every penny.

The great news is that Meal Genius won’t cost you $500…

In fact, you won’t even pay the retail price of $200 if take action today!

Accept this invitation to receive Meal Genius, and you’ll get everything for an annual fee of just $99!

That’s the cost of just one session with a personal trainer or a single consultation with a nutritionist (most of whom charge $60-$120 per hour). Yet, the benefits you receive will last a lifetime.

And because the entire program is delivered online, through your own personal secure portal, you can sign up, login and get started right away!

As soon as your order is complete, you will receive an email with easy 1-2-3 instructions for setting up your meal plan.

And we are so confident in your success that you can…

Try Your Personalized Thyroid Diet Plan… 100% RISK FREE!

Meal Genius Guarantee Certificate

The Meal Genius personalized meal plan and lifestyle program is going to change your life and dramatically improve your health.

Before you take another bite of food (or swallow another pill), you owe it to yourself to put this information in your hands. You have absolutely nothing to lose, and everything to gain.

Don’t hesitate…

Your health is too valuable. Take action today!


Why You Need a Personalized Diet

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