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Matters of Weight

"Addressing weight problems despite hypothyroidism"
By: Vanessa ValenzuelaMatters of Weight

Patients with hypothyroidism gain weight despite lowering their calorie intake and increasing activity levels. How can a patient keep to a healthy weight despite hypothyroidism?

  • Count the calories. Since the body’s rate of burning calories is not normal, patients have to watch their diet. Controlling calorie intake is especially recommended. They should keep a low fat, high fiber, low calorie diet to control rapid weight gain.
  • Exercise. Doing regular exercise not only corrects a slow metabolic rate, but also helps burn the excess calories and helps regulate hormonal patterns. Experts declare that doing 60 to 70 minutes of exercise, four or five days weekly can fight possible imbalances in the levels of insulin and leptin. Brisk walking or jogging will most definitely keep the weight controlled and hormone levels in check.
  • Check your medications. Taking certain types of antidepressants, beta blockers, and birth control pills can cause weight gain in some patients. Ask the doctor about these medications.
  • Build muscles. Strength training is important for thyroid patients who are trying to prevent rapid weight gain. More toned muscles also means faster metabolism.
  • Keep an active lifestyle. Stay away from the couch and start spending your free time outdoors. Go biking, walk your dog, or walk around the neighborhood.
  • Hydrate yourself. Drinking plenty of water can kick your metabolism back into action. Water also helps your body get rid of wastes and toxins that lead to conditions that cause weight gain.

Keeping a healthy weight is important in staying healthy. So, watch the scales but don’t worry too much. With discipline and determination, shedding those extra pounds is doable—and a healthy, active life, achievable!

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