At IVF-Spain Madrid we want to explain the influence that hypothyroidism can have in nutrition and in our fertility. As well as the importance of the right thyroid hormone levels throughout the development of the fetus. That fore, we will provide you with a few nutritional suggestions to help you maintain the recommended thyroid levels in a healthy way.
What is hypothyroidism and how does it affect fertility?
Hypothyroidism is the sum of organic alterations that can produce a lack of thyroid hormones. The thyroid hormones, are very important for most of functions of our body. Specially the hormone T4 has a big effect on the correct development of the central nervous system (CNS) of the foetus. If the hormonal levels are not in the recommended range, the neural migration and the formation and maturation of critical areas of the brain will not be optimal.
Without a correct level of these thyroid hormones, the neuronal migration, maturation and formation of important parts of the brain, can’t develop properly. That is why it is important to maintain a TSH level (Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone) under 2.5mlU/L. At this level, we will ensure the appropriate level of thyroid hormonal input to the fetus.
The relationship between nutrition and hypothyroidism
Aside from a medical treatment, there are other natural methods that can help maintain the TSH levels within a healthy range.
For example, selenium, a key element to keep healthy TSH levels. Some food with high levels of selenium are: sunflower seeds, Brazil nuts, wheat and wheat germ, bran, barley and mustard seeds.
It is also important to control iodine levels. Some plant-based foods contain higher levels of iodine than others. Some examples of iodine levels, in milligrams, per 100 grams of food are: spinach (41 mcg), whole-grain rice (20 mcg), fresh mushrooms (18 mcg), or beetroot, carrots and apples (8 mcg).
On the other hand, it is advisable to avoid dairy and soy products, as they can alter the TSH levels.
Aside from a well-balanced diet, there are other alternative treatments that can help with thyroid-derived problems. There are various studies that support Phytotherapy treatments (Fucs Vesiculosus) and Ayurvedic treatments (Commiphora Mukul). If you are considering these options, we recommend you speak with a specialist in this sector.
Nutrition and fertility
Like we already mentioned before, there are some foods that can have a positive influence in our health and on the other hand, there are foods that can affect our fertility. Nowadays, lots of them are part of our daily diet and for that reason the World Health Organisation (WHO) is making clear the need to limit the consummation of saturated fats and trans-fatty acids, salt and sugars. At the same time, it recommends increasing consummation of fruits and vegetables, as well as physical activity.
Avoiding the food that can harm our health and increase the consummation of those who have important nutrients will also help to improve our fertility.
What food should I eat during a fertility treatment?
The base of each healthy diet are always fruit and vegetables. Thanks to them we obtain most of the nutrients we need as humans. Many studies have proven that these can substitute others food with much less important nutrients and that way decrease the risk of suffering cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and various gastrointestinal problems.
Another nutritional group is the one composed of cereal and proteins, both don’t contain important nutrients and can be substituted by combinations of others foods.
In this webinar, nurse consultant Andreia Trigo, explains the relationship between fertility and nutrition.
Weight and fertility
As Andreia Trigo is explaining in the webinar, a diet with an excess of animal proteins can displace the intake of other foods and therefore can worsen fertility. This diet can lead to overweight.
In the case of women overweight can lead to high oestrogen levels, which would alter the menstrual cycle and ovulation, leading to a worse fertility. For men the overweight would imply high insulin levels, which would reduce testosterone levels.
That is why it is important to maintain a healthy weight and diet, to help the cardiovascular function to help to improve both men and women’s fertility.
If you still have questions, don’t doubt to contact us through this form, our team of specialists is happy to solve all your doubts.