Methods to self-check it at home
There are a few ways to check for thyroid problems at home, but it is important to note that self-diagnosis is not recommended and these methods are not as accurate as a professional medical examination.
One way to check for a thyroid problem at home is to check for a goiter, which is an enlarged thyroid gland. A goiter can be felt as a lump in the front of the neck, just above the collarbone. However, it’s important to note that a goiter may not be present in all cases of thyroid disorder.
Another way to check for a thyroid problem at home is to check your basal body temperature. A low basal body temperature can be an indication of hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid). To check your basal body temperature, take your temperature before getting out of bed in the morning, using a basal thermometer. Keep in mind that some factors like Menstruation and medications may affect the basal body temperature reading.
Another test you can do at home is a TSH test, also known as a home-thyroid testing kit. It involves taking a small blood sample, which can be done at home, and sending it to a lab for analysis. TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) level measurement is considered as the most sensitive marker of thyroid function.
It is important to remember that these methods are not as accurate as a professional medical examination and it’s not a substitute for consulting a Doctor. If you have any concerns about your thyroid health, it’s important to see a healthcare provider for a proper diagnosis and treatment.
A simple thyroid check at home
You can check your thyroid at home quickly and easily. You only need a mirror and a glass of water to perform this self-examination. Follow these steps to perform a thyroid self-exam:
Determine the location of your thyroid, to begin with. The thyroid is often located on the front of the neck, between the collarbone and Adam’s apple. The Adam’s apple is much more noticeable in men. The best place to look for women is typically from the collarbone up. Look at a mirror while cocking your head back. When you are gazing at your neck, try to focus on the area where the exam will be conducted.
When you are ready, lean your head back and take a drink of water. As you swallow, be aware of your thyroid. You’re looking for lumps or bumps during this test. When you gulp down the water, you might be able to see them. To acquire a clear picture of your thyroid, repeat this test several times.
Supplements compared with natural food intake
It is generally recommended to obtain nutrients from a balanced diet that includes a variety of foods, rather than relying on supplements alone. Eating a healthy, balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and healthy fats can provide the essential vitamins and minerals that the body needs to function properly.
That being said, certain supplements may be beneficial for certain individuals, particularly those with a deficiency or a medical condition that requires supplementation.
For example, Iodine is an important mineral needed for the production of thyroid hormones. If you are living in an area with iodine-deficient soil, getting enough iodine in your diet might be difficult. In such cases, taking an iodine supplement may be helpful, but it is important to talk to a healthcare provider before taking any supplement to determine the right dosage and to avoid any potential interaction with other medications.
Other supplements such as selenium, zinc and omega-3 fatty acids may also be helpful in individuals with autoimmune thyroid disorders, but more research is needed to confirm these findings.
It’s also important to note that, high doses of some vitamins and minerals can be harmful and may interact with other medications you’re taking, so it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider before taking any supplements, especially if you’re already being treated for any medical condition.
In general, a balanced diet and regular exercise, along with adequate rest, healthy weight, and stress management can help to support a healthy thyroid and overall health.
Selenium, zinc and omega -3 fatty acids are present in specific foods
Selenium, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids can be found in certain foods. Here are some examples of food sources for each nutrient:
- Brazil nuts: One ounce (about 6-8 nuts) can contain over 100% of the recommended daily intake of selenium
- Fish, such as tuna and halibut
- Meat, such as beef and chicken
- Whole grains, such as oats and brown rice
- Oysters: are an excellent source of zinc, containing up to 74mg per 100 grams.
- Beef, pork and chicken
- Legumes like lentils and chickpeas
- Nuts and seeds such as pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, and cashews
- Whole grains such as quinoa, barley and wheat
Omega-3 fatty acids:
- Fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, and sardines
- Flaxseeds, chia seeds and hemp seeds
- Nuts and seeds, such as walnuts and pumpkin seeds
- Eggs and grass-fed beef
- Certain algae, which can be taken as a supplement
It’s important to note that while these foods are good sources of these nutrients, it’s always best to consult a qualified healthcare professional or a dietitian to evaluate your dietary needs and determine the best sources of nutrition for you, based on your individual needs, age, and health status.