How Do You Lose Weight When You Have a Thyroid Disorder?

weight loss in hypothyroidism

Weight gain in thyroid disorder is very common due to slow down in body metabolism.

Due to less secretion if the hormones, the body is unable to break down food and process the sugar into energy.

A weight loss diet plan for thyroid disorder is important to remain fit and toned body despite the disorder.

Weight loss for thyroid patients | Weight loss diet plan | Medication  

A slow thyroid is called hypothyroidism disease.

Patients with hypothyroidism gain weight above normal because the thyroid gland is not able to maintain adequate levels of thyroid hormones that are necessary for carrying out the body metabolism process including break down of food substances.

Weight Loss for Thyroid Patients

Patients with hypothyroidism face greater difficulties in losing weight as compared to people with normal gland functioning.

The two-fold negative effect of hypothyroidism makes weight loss a complex issue in people with slow thyroid functioning.

Rapid Weight Gain Rate in Thyroid Patients:

When the body exhibits normal metabolism process, the fat and carbohydrate break down in the body is faster.

In contrast when the body metabolism is slack the breakdown of the complex food substances like fats and carbs is slow.

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The excess fatty cells keep getting deposited in the body thus causing an increase in the rate of fat accumulation and weight gain.

Loss of Activity Potential:

Hypothyroidism is not only accompanied by weight gain but also symptoms like fatigue, lack of concentration, depression among others.

The feeling of always being tired makes the patient want to always rest and shun activities thus causing a vicious cycle of weight gain.

For losing weight hypothyroidism patients must rely on good diet plans, slow and spread out activities like morning and evening walks and a good amount of restful sleep.

thyroid disorder
Thyroid Disorder

Weight loss Diet Plan for Thyroid Disorder

Thyroid patients need to take smaller more frequent meals, rich in vitamins and minerals and fibres and low in gluten, carbs, and fat.

1. A frequency of Meals: 

Hypothyroid patients can take the first meal of the day at 6 a.m, next meals at 9 am, 12 p.m, 3 pm, 6 pm and 9 pm.

After 9 pm it is best to avoid food intake as the best time to go to bed would be 10 am and to rise would be 4 am or 5 am in the morning.

The morning meals before 12 p.m and evening meals of 3 pm and 6 pm can be light meals. The 12 p.m and 9 p.m meals can be heavier meals.

2. Light Meal Plans: 

The light meals of hypothyroid patients can comprise of green tea, no sugar oats biscuits, oats porridge, quinoa preparations, fruits like apple, papaya, green salad on oats roll, cornflakes with soy or organic milk, corn and green peas, dry (without oil) roasted pumpkin seeds, few dry roasted almonds, kidney beans (rajma), tomato or spinach soup without butter.

3. Heavier Meal Plans:

Heavier meals for hypothyroid patients can comprise of chapatti made of wheat/bajra/Macca/oats but refined flour is a big no.

Vegetable preparations made with little coconut oil can be included but goitre vegetables like cabbage and cauliflower should be avoided.

Thyroid patients should reduce the intake of sugar and avoid gluten-rich foods and refined food products. Brown rice preparations can be combined with vegetables and chicken.

Fish and marine food preparation are highly recommended. Yoghurt with fruit can be taken as dessert.

4. Water Intake:

Hypothyroid patients should take ample amount of pure and clean water, around 8 ounces, spread equivalently over the day. They should avoid consuming tap water or water from unreliable public sources.

Best Thyroid Medication for Weight Loss

Doctors prescribe thyroid hormone pills to patients with thyroid disorder to make up for the slow hormone production by the thyroid gland. Besides several supplements are known to improve thyroid functioning.

A. Doctor’s prescription: 

The commonly prescribed medicine by doctors for hypothyroidism patients is Levothyroxine. The doctor’s prescription may also include amino acid and vitamin B complex other than the main thyroid medicine.

Besides the allopathic medication intake of certain herbs and minerals is known to improve thyroid functioning.

B. Herbs:

Recommended intake 500 mg per day. Herbs beneficial for patients with the hypothyroid condition include Ashwagandha, Rhodiola, Shisandra, and Basil (Tulsi).

C. Minerals:

Recommended intake of 150-300 mcg per day of Iodine and 200 mcg per day of Selenium. Foods like fish, fish oils, seaweeds and sea vegetables, eggs have rich Iodine content.


1. Does Levothyroxine cause weight loss?

Levothyroxine is the most commonly prescribed medication for hypothyroidism. The medicine comprises the synthetic form of the thyroid hormones T3 and T4.

It can be expected that by consuming these medicines weight is expected to reduce or at least body weight gain should stop as the body would be getting more hormones for metabolism.

Yet the truth is not so simple, recent studies indicate no relation between Levothyroxine consumption and weight gain syndrome.

Medicines have typical pharmacology and that may determine their mode of action.

However, patients who take Levothyroxine report that they feel better and can undertake routine activities in a better manner.

2. Are there any topical medicines for Hypothyroidism?

Frankincense oil and Lemongrass and Myrrh essential oil have been known to activate the thyroid functioning upon topical application on the throat and palms of hand, wrist, and feet.

3. What is the best diet for vegans with Hypothyroidism problem?

Vegans would not like to consume any animal based product. Yet they might benefit from super vegan foods like seaweeds and edible algae as well as the regular vegetable diet.

4. Should Hypothyroidism patients reduce rest and sleep hours to reduce weight faster?

Good sleep is important for proper body metabolism process. Hypothyroidism patients can spread their activities throughout the day and attend to them slowly.

Taking walks in natural surroundings and performing Yoga and meditation is highly recommended.

5. Is consuming dairy products suitable for Hypothyroidism patients?

Processed and pasteurized dairy products contain complex substances which are difficult to break down. Hence Hypothyroidism patients may only be able to digest limited quantities of the regular dairy products.

However probiotic supplements like organic Yoghurt are especially beneficial for patients with thyroid problem as these supply good microbes to the gut which produce good enzymes and improve gut functioning and metabolism process.

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2 thoughts on “How Do You Lose Weight When You Have a Thyroid Disorder?

  1. Abdul Mobeen Akram says:

    Hello , i have been trying to lose weight for the last year , my weight , is currently bouncing inbetween 10 kgs , i wanted to know ,

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