Thyroid Diet Plan For Hyperthyroidism


Thyroid diet plan for hyperthyroidism, in particular, is considered as one of the most wholesome and healthy diet plans, which helps you burn excess calories. A diet for hyperthyroidism should be made considering the complications that it may cause. Below we have hooded down some of the most important pointers for a balanced eating plan for those who are suffering from this problem. This article provides information on the diet plan for hyperthyroidism and how one can go about treating this condition through a balanced diet.

Thyroid and diet factsheet

There are no specific foods or dietary supplements that are helpful in treating thyroid disorders.

To ensure that you remain as healthy as possible it is important to eat the right variety of foods in the correct proportions. The NHS Eatwell Guide recommends you should try to:

  • eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day
  • base meals on higher fibre starchy foods like potatoes, bread, rice or pasta
  • have some dairy or dairy alternatives
  • eat some beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other protein
  • choose unsaturated oils and spreads, and eat them in small amounts
  • drink plenty of fluids (at least 6 to 8 glasses a day)

It isn’t always easy to maintain a varied and healthy diet, and for this reason some people may wish to take additional vitamins and supplements. If you decide to take vitamins and supplements you should avoid taking them in excessive amounts. This is because some can interfere with your thyroid function or your thyroid blood test results.

We recommend you take appropriate advice from your doctor or pharmacist before you start taking any supplements or vitamins.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D helps regulate calcium and phosphate production and is needed for healthy bones, teeth and muscles.  Some studies have shown that the people with low levels of vitamin D may also have thyroid disorders but the link is not clearly defined and may be coincidental. 

Since most people may be deficient in vitamin D (particularly in the autumn and winter months when the sunlight in the UK is not strong) the NHS advises that all adults and children over the age of five take a supplement of 10mcg each day. This applies during the autumn and winter for most people but throughout the year if you are concerned you may not get enough sunlight even at other times of the year, e.g. you aren’t often outdoors or you tend to cover yourself up with clothes when you are outside.

If you have dark skin you are also at risk of not getting enough vitamin D from sunlight and should consider taking 10mcg supplements throughout the year.


Some calcium-rich foods and supplements interfere with levothyroxine absorption. A gap of 4 hours between the two would be adequate to ensure there is no significant impact on blood thyroxine levels. If you are trying to lose weight and use lower fat milk (i.e. semi-skimmed or skimmed), this remains high in calcium despite being lower in fat.


For people with a properly functioning thyroid iodine is essential as it is required for the production of thyroxine. It is particularly important in women who are pregnant as it is needed to ensure the development of a baby’s brain during pregnancy and early life.

If you are taking levothyroxine for hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) or for a goitre (thyroid swelling) there is no need to take iodine supplements.

If you are being treated for hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) taking an iodine supplement is unnecessary and can worsen the condition. The extra iodine can counteract the benefits of the anti-thyroid drugs.


Soya interferes with thyroxine absorption, therefore if you are taking thyroxine you should try to avoid soya. If you wish to take soya, there should be as long a time interval as possible between eating the soya and taking the thyroxine.

There is evidence of certain brands of soya milk being withdrawn from sale by authorities in countries such as Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and Japan because they contained excessive amounts of iodine or being highly enriched with seaweed products that naturally contain iodine.


Avoid products such as kelp, as they may interfere with thyroid function and wellbeing. Kelp is derived from seaweed and is naturally high in iodine. Because of this, it is sometimes marketed as a ‘thyroid booster’ and can be purchased in dry preparations and tablets. As with iodine itself, it is of no health benefit to those with thyroid disease. 

Iron Tablets

Some medications such as iron tablets (ferrous sulphate) can interfere with the absorption of thyroxine. Some doctors recommend a two-hour interval between taking thyroxine and the iron. Follow the advice of your doctor or pharmacist. Be aware that some multivitamin tablets contain iron.


Brassicas (cabbage, cauliflower, kale etc) may contribute to the formation of a goitre (swelling or enlargement of the thyroid gland) in some cases, but consumption would need to be very high before this is a real concern. In the UK, under normal dietary conditions, this is not normally a problem and the risk is very low.


This is found in Brazil nuts, tuna, sardines, eggs and legumes (e.g. beans, chickpeas, lentils) it is thought that it helps with thyroid function. All of these are foods are recommended as part of a healthy balanced diet. Selenium supplements should not be taken until your natural levels have been measured, since too much selenium can damage health.

Hyperthyroidism: Foods to eat and avoid

A person’s diet can have an effect on the symptoms of hyperthyroidism. Some foods can improve the condition, while others can make symptoms worse or interfere with medications.

Hyperthyroidism, a type of thyrotoxicosis, is a condition in which the thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone. Some people refer to this condition as an overactive thyroid. The most common cause of hyperthyroidism is an autoimmune condition called Graves’ disease.

The symptoms of an overactive thyroid include unintentional weight loss, anxiety, sweating, frequent bowel movements, difficulty sleeping, and muscle weakness. Hyperthyroidism is much more common in women than in men.

In this article, we discuss how diet affects hyperthyroidism and provide lists of foods to eat and avoid.

How does diet affect hyperthyroidism?

Raw kale and a knife on a wooden cutting board
Sergey Narevskih/Stocksy

Eating certain foods will not cure hyperthyroidism, but some nutrients and minerals play a role in managing the underlying condition. Diet can affect both the production of thyroid hormones and how the thyroid functions.

The following nutrients and chemicals are among those that can affect hyperthyroidism:

  • Iodine, which the thyroid gland uses to produce thyroid hormone. Too much iodine in the diet can increase the production of thyroid hormone.
  • Calcium and vitamin D are vital because hyperthyroidism can cause problems with bone mineral density.
  • Foods and drinks containing caffeine can worsen the symptoms of hyperthyroidism.

Below, we discuss some of the nutrients that can affect thyroid function and note which foods contain them.

Foods to eat

The following foods can have benefits for people with an overactive thyroid:

Low iodine foods

If a person is planning to receive radioactive iodine treatment for hyperthyroidism, their doctor may ask them to follow a low iodine diet. A low-iodine diet is a diet with less than 50 micrograms (mcg) of iodine per day.’

Foods and drinks that are low in iodine include:

  • noniodized salt
  • egg whites
  • fresh or frozen vegetables
  • herbs and spices
  • vegetable oils
  • sugar, honey, or maple syrup (up to 2 tbsp.)
  • jams or jellies
  • unsalted nuts and nut butter
  • lemonade
  • beer and wine
  • moderate portions of beef, chicken, turkey, veal, and lamb
  • fruit and fruit juices

The American Thyroid Association offers tips on how to follow a low iodine diet.

Cruciferous vegetables

Some cruciferous vegetables contain compounds that decrease thyroid hormone production and may reduce iodine uptake by the thyroid. Both of these effects may be beneficial for a person with hyperthyroidism.

These cruciferous vegetables include:

  • Brussels sprouts and cabbage
  • collard greens, mustard greens, and turnip roots and greens
  • kale and arugula
  • radishes and rutabagas
  • bok choy
  • cauliflower
  • broccoli and broccoli rabe

Foods containing selenium

Selenium is a micronutrient that the body requires for the metabolism of thyroid hormones. Research suggests that selenium can help improve some of the symptoms of autoimmune thyroid disease, such as thyroid eye disease.

Among people using anti-thyroid medications, those who take selenium supplements may achieve normal thyroid levels more quickly than those who do not.

Foods rich in selenium include:

  • Brazil nuts
  • fortified pasta and cereals
  • rice
  • egg whites
  • baked beans
  • oatmeal
  • spinach

Other selenium-rich foods, including tuna, halibut, shrimp, ham, egg yolks, and cottage cheese are also high in iodine which may affect iodine therapy. Eat fortified pasta and cereals, and rice made without ingredients that contain a lot of iodine. Eat limited amounts of beef, chicken, and turkey.

Foods containing iron

Iron is a nutrient that is important for normal bodily processes, including thyroid health. Iron helps the red blood cells carry oxygen to other cells in the body.

Researchers have linked low levels of iron to hyperthyroidism.

People can maintain an adequate intake of iron by including these foods in their diet:

  • fortified cereals
  • raisins
  • dark chocolate
  • beef, chicken, turkey, and pork
  • spinach

Some iron-rich foods are also high in iodine, which may affect iodine therapy. Make sure your total iodine intake is less than 50 mcg per day:

  • oysters and fish
  • white beans, kidney beans, and black beans
  • lentils
  • sardines
  • chickpeas
  • canned beef, chicken or turkey
  • cured pork products (bacon, sausages, or hot dogs)

Look for fortified cereals made without ingredients that contain a lot of iodine.

5 Foods that May Help Ease Hyperthyroidism Symptoms

5 Foods that May Help Ease Hyperthyroidism Symptoms

Although a healthy diet can’t cure or prevent hyperthyroidism, eating healthy foods may help ease hyperthyroidism symptoms. But what foods should you eat? This slideshow shows you 5 foods to eat for hyperthyroidism.

What to Eat for Hyperthyroidism

What to Eat for Hyperthyroidism

5 Foods to Help Relieve Mild Symptoms

There’s no such thing as a hyperthyroidism diet, but what you eat matters. Hyperthyroidism—when your thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone—can’t be prevented or treated though diet alone. It’s often treated with prescription medication, so see your doctor immediately if you have hyperthyroidism symptoms. But by eating certain foods, you can limit some mild hyperthyroidism symptoms. This slideshow shows you 5 foods that may help ease hyperthyroidism symptoms.



Can Berries Boost Your Health?

From strawberries to blueberries to raspberries—the choice is yours. Berries pack a powerful punch because they’re bursting with antioxidants, which keep your immune system strong. Eat a serving of berries every day.



Cook with Cruciferous Veggies

Broccoli is part of the goitrogen family—foods that can decrease the amount of thyroid hormone your thyroid gland produces. Foods that belong to this group are known as “cruciferous” foods. Not a broccoli fan? Other cruciferous veggies include cauliflower, kale, and cabbage. Eat one or more servings of these veggies a day.



Vitamin D and Omega-3s for Thyroid Health

Salmon contains vitamin D—an essential nutrient that works with calcium to prevent bone loss. Salmon also carries a megadose of omega-3 fatty acids that keep you healthy. Your body doesn’t naturally produce these fatty acids, so you have to get them from food. If you’re not into fish, get your vitamin D from eggs and mushrooms and your omega-3s from walnuts, olive oil, and flaxseed oil. Eats foods with these nutrients daily.



Who Says Turkey Should Be Reserved for Thanksgiving?

Turkey is an excellent source of protein—important because your body needs protein for energy and to build and maintain muscle. Weight loss is a common hyperthyroidism symptom, so eating enough protein can help ensure you stay at a healthy weight. Don’t eat meat? No problem—you can get protein from beans and nuts. Just try to eat protein at every meal.



Get More Dairy in Your Diet

Untreated hyperthyroidism can eventually weaken your bones and may lead to osteoporosis. To prevent this, get 3 servings a day of calcium from yogurt or other dairy foods, such as cheese and milk.

Diet Chart For Hyperthyroidism

Diet Chart

Breakfast (8:00-8:30AM)Vegetable Upma (1 cup) + Green Tea (1 cup)
Mid-Meal (11:00-11:30AM)1 Mango
Lunch (2:00-2:30PM)Parboiled Rice (1 cup) + Masoor Dal (1 cup) + Fried Lady’s Finger (1/3rd cup) + Fish Curry (1/2 cup) + 1/4th Fresh Lime
Evening (4:00-4:30PM)Green Tea (1 cup) + 4 Almonds + 3 Cashews + 5-6 Raisins
Dinner (8:00-8:30PM)2 Chapati + Mix Veg (1 cup)
Breakfast (8:00-8:30AM)2 Chapati + Stir fried Carrot n Beetroot (1 cup)
Mid-Meal (11:00-11:30AM)2 Chikus
Lunch (2:00-2:30PM)Parboiled Rice (1 cup) + Chana Dal (1 cup) + Mashed Potato (1/3 cup) + Cabbage Curry (1/2 cup) + 1/4th Fresh Lime
Evening (4:00-4:30PM)Green Tea (1 cup) + 4 Almonds + 3 Cashews + 5-6 Raisins
Dinner (8:00-8:30PM)2 Chapati + Bottle Gourd Curry (1 cup)
Breakfast (8:00-8:30AM)Rice Flakes Poha (1 cup) + Green Tea (1 cup)
Mid-Meal (11:00-11:30AM)1 Nashpati
Lunch (2:00-2:30PM)Parboiled Rice (1 cup) + Moong Dal (1 cup) + Fried Bitter Gourd (1/3 cup) + Broad Beans Curry (1/2 cup) + 1/4th Fresh Lime
Evening (4:00-4:30PM)Green Tea (1 cup) + 4 Almonds + 3 Cashews + 5-6 Raisins
Dinner (8:00-8:30PM)2 Chapati + Carrot n Beetroot curry (1 cup)
Breakfast (8:00-8:30AM)2 Chapati + Daal (1 cup)
Mid-Meal (11:00-11:30AM)Pomegranate (1 cup)
Lunch (2:00-2:30PM)Parboiled Rice (1 cup) + Baked Badi (1 cup) + Fish Curry (1/2 cup) + 1/4th Fresh Lime
Evening (4:00-4:30PM)Green Tea (1 cup) + 4 Almonds + 3 Cashews + 5-6 Raisins
Dinner (8:00-8:30PM)2 Chapati + Pointed Gourd Curry (1 cup)
Breakfast (8:00-8:30AM)Vegetable Upma (1/2 cup) + 1 Fried Fish
Mid-Meal (11:00-11:30AM)Grapes (1 cup)
Lunch (2:00-2:30PM)Parboiled Rice (1 cup) + Shrimp Curry (1/2 cup) + Chana Dal (1 cup) + Fried Potato (1/2 cup) + 1/4th Fresh Lime
Evening (4:00-4:30PM)Green Tea (1 cup) + 4 Almonds + 3 Cashews + 5-6 Raisins
Dinner (8:00-8:30PM)2 Chapati + Snake Gourd Curry (1 cup)
Breakfast (8:00-8:30AM)2 Chapati + Daal (1 cup)
Mid-Meal (11:00-11:30AM)1 Lemon
Lunch (2:00-2:30PM)Parboiled Rice (1 cup) + Masoor Dal (1 cup) + Masala Pointed Gourd (2pcs.) + Mix Veg. (1/2 cup) + 1/4th Fresh Lime
Evening (4:00-4:30PM)Green Tea (1 cup) + 4 Almonds + 3 Cashews + 5-6 Raisins
Dinner (8:00-8:30PM)2 Chapati + Fish curry (1 cup)
Breakfast (8:00-8:30AM)Rice Flakes Poha (1 cup) + Potato Pakoda (4)
Mid-Meal (11:00-11:30AM)1 Apple
Lunch (2:00-2:30PM)Parboiled Rice (1 cup) + Chicken Curry (1 cup) + Potato n Pumpkin Curry (1/2 cup) + 1/4th Fresh Lime
Evening (4:00-4:30PM)Green Tea (1 cup) + 4 Almonds + 3 Cashews + 5-6 Raisins
Dinner (8:00-8:30PM)2 Chapati + Dum Aloo (1 cup)

Food Items To Limit

  1. Iodized salt: consumption of iodine can further increase the thyroid hormone production, so it has to be avoided.
  2. Any vitamins or supplements that contain iodine (especially kelp and dulse)
  3. Milk or other dairy products including ice cream, cheese, yogurt and butter, Milk chocolate (due to dairy content)- contains high amounts of tyrosine which helps in synthesis of thyroid hormone at an increased extent.
  4. Seafood including fish, sushi, shellfish, kelp or seaweed- they have to be avoided as they are rich sources of iodine which increases the thyroid hormone production.
  5. Herbal supplements- might contain high amounts of iodine which has a negative effcet on thyroid gland.
  6. Foods that contain the additive carrageen, agar-agar, alginate, or nori
  7. Commercially prepared bakery products that are made with iodate dough conditioners
  8. FD&C red dye #3 – this appears in maraschino cherries and occasionally as a pink/red artificial color in beverages
  9. Egg yolks, whole eggs and foods containing whole eggs- rich in iodine and tyrosine.
  10. Blackstrap Molasses (unsulfured molasses is fine)- contains high amounts of tyrosine which helps in synthesis of thyroid hormone at an increased extent.
  11. Soy products (soy sauce, soy milk, tofu)- Soy contains isoflavones which has negative effects on the thyroid.

Do’s And Dont’s


  1. Include whole grain cereals and legumes.
  2. Fruits and vegetables.
  3. Prefer home made foods over outside foods.
  4. Do check for iodine content on food labels.


  1. Soy
  2. Gluten
  3. fatty foods
  4. Sugery foods
  5. Alcohol and caffiene
  6. avoid smoking
  7. Avoid restaurant foods since there is no reasonable way to determine which restaurants use iodized salt.
  8. Limited grain products (ie noodles, pasta, pastries)
  9. Limited amounts of beef, chicken and turkey

Food Items You Can Easily Consume

  1. Non-iodized salt or non-iodized sea salt may be used as desired
  2. Egg whites
  3. Homemade bread made with non-iodized salt and oil (not soy!) instead of butter or milk or commercially-baked breads which do not contain iodate dough conditioners, dairy, or eggs
  4. Fresh fruits and vegetables
  5. Frozen vegetables
  6. Grain, cereal products and pasta without high iodine ingredients
  7. Canned fruit
  8. Natural unsalted nuts and nut butters (peanut, almond, etc)
  9. Sodas, beer, wine, lemonade, fruit juices
  10. Coffee or tea. But remember, no milk or cream and no soy-based non-dairy creamer!
  11. Popcorn popped in vegetable oil or air popped, with non-iodized salt
  12. Black pepper, fresh or dried herbs and spices, all vegetable oils
  13. Sugar, jam, jelly, honey maple syrup
  14. Matzoh crackers

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