I’m often asked if legumes are “safe” to eat when you have thyroid disease. The short answer is “yes.” The key is to soak the beans overnight in water and a pinch of baking soda to reduce the anti-nutrients before cooking.
Most people go way too low-carb when they are trying to heal their thyroid, but remember, your adrenals need the carbs to stay balanced, and your liver needs the glucose so it can convert T4 to T3 (this is very important for your energy levels). This is why I don’t recommend a ketogenic diet or strict low-carb paleo diet when you have thyroid disease or hormone imbalance.
When I work with my nutritional therapy clients who have thyroid disease, I recommend getting at least 100g of complex carbohydrates each day. When they make this change, they often come back at our next follow-up appointment to report that their symptoms such as insomnia, irritability, anxiety, and headaches have improved!
Here’s a list of some healthy carbohydrates (and don’t forget to eat your carbs with a serving of healthy fats so your blood sugar stays balanced):
- Leafy Greens
- Legumes (soaked)
- Lentils (soaked)
- Soaked grains (if you can tolerate grains)
- Potatoes (all kinds)
- Root vegetables
- Bell peppers
- Tomatoes (avoid if you have arthritis or joint pain)
- Eggplant (avoid if you have arthritis or joint pain)
- Citrus fruits
- All other vegetables
Photos taken by Becky Winkler