Kippy: This comes from my new book ($3.99 for a 607 page hardbound volume—you can’t make it for that price!) New Foods for Healing by Selene Yeager and the Editors of Prevention Health Books. (Some of the following information I have interpreted on my own.) If you’re hypothyroid, you should avoid raw foods in the brassica family such as broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, kale, mustard greens, turnips, soybeans, peanuts, millet and spinach. These foods contain goitrogens. Goitrogens are chemicals that block the thyroid’s ability to use iodine. With less iodine, the gland produces less thyroid hormone. Who would’ve thought that raw broccoli could make you a fat slug?
Cooking these vegetables, however, may deactivate the goitrogens. So if you’re hypothyroid cook your brassicas (no, that’s not similar to burning your brassieres) and if you’re hyperthyroid eat ‘em raw or juice them. The book also recommends that those who have hyperthyroid conditions should eat plenty of protein and fat to prevent their overactive thyroid from burning away needed fat and muscle. (Of course, if you’re a supermodel, you should just stop eating, right now and forever).
Polly: I love broccoli sprouts in my sandwiches. At least they don’t have as many phytoestrogens in them as alfalfa sprouts. They last longer in the refrigerator too. A few raw vegetables from the brassica family shouldn’t be a problem. Like so many things, it is just when it is overdone that it is a problem. Besides the foods you mentioned, Raymond Peat suggests that an excess of beans, lentils, nuts, carotene, polyunsaturated fats, and cysteine can also suppress thyroid.
But Carrots Can Keep You Trim!
Polly: If you eat one carrot per day, as suggested by my favorite author, Raymond Peat, this will provide bulk and keep you regular. If the food moves through you at the proper speed, then there is less time for your body to reabsorb the estrogen that has been dumped in the intestines for disposal. (The liver places conjugated estrogens in the bile to be dumped in the intestines for disposal with the intestinal waste.) Stopping excessive recirculation of estrogen takes a load off the liver and your thyroid.
However, I don’t suggest that you eat lots of raw carrots or other roughage. Too much could aggravate your leaky gut. According to Leo Galland, MD, some soluble fiber will reduce symptoms of leaky gut, but too much will make it worse. (Soluble fiber bulks up by absorbing water. eg. psyllium husks.) Yet, he claims that you can ingest a high or low level of insoluble fiber, like cellulose, and it will only improve the leaky gut problem. (See his article at http://www.mdheal.org/parasites.htm) Another word to the wise: when changing your diet by adding fiber, make the change slowly and drink plenty of fluid. Give your body a chance to adjust. Too much fiber too fast can make you constipated, just the opposite of what you want.
Assuming you are well enough to tolerate a raw carrot, then you might want to grate it and add it to your salad. If you use a little warmed coconut oil in the dressing, then the carrot will carry the coconut oil to the lower intestine. The carrot salad with a coconut oil, vinegar, and salt dressing idea comes from Raymond Peat, PhD. He states that this salad “can often help to normalize progesterone, apparently by protecting against intestinal absorption of bacterial endotoxin, and by helping to reduce the reabsorption of estrogen which has been excreted in the bile.”
PS: If you try coconut oil, start very slowly with perhaps a teaspoon per day until your body gets used to it. Therapeutic doses are three and a half tablespoons per day according to Mary Enig, PhD. http://www.karlloren.com/Diabetes/diet/p89.htm