Yes, walnuts are a goitrogen. "Goitrogen" is a broad catagory of foods that interfere with thyroid function, by a variety of different mechanisms: by increasing the liver's production of binding protiens, competition with thyroid hormone for docking sites at cell membranes, interference within the thyroid, with the enzyme thyroid peroxidase or the protien thyroglobulin which interact to create thyroid hormone, binding in the gut with thyroid medication, or interfering with the gut's conversion of T4 into T3.
This interference promotes overgrowth of thyroid tissue in some people, in the thyroids effort to create more hormone. Increase in thyroid size = goiter.
People with iodine deficiency, that eat large amounts of goitrogens, that are not optimized on their thyroid meds, and that eat goitrogens within 4 hours of their thyroid medication are at greater risk of developing problems as a result of eating goitrogens.
Goitrogens can be reduced by cooking.
I don't have links for these statements, its just stuff I know from research over the years. You, however, can find the sources, by researching the specifics of what I've said here into Google and seeing what studies come up.
If you find anything particularly interesting or to add to this list, please share it with us here so that we can all benefit from your research.
: ) Mzzchief
Never underestimate the value of getting out of your own way.
Thank you so much for all the wonderful information and links. I also read about almonds and now realize I should go easy on eating them. I have been eating them everyday so will cut down and have them as a treat. Same as walnuts.
Everything in moderation is good for you I believe.
Walnuts are a health food, a superfood, because of their many wonderful properties such as omegas, fiber, etc.
Discussion Topic: Are walnuts good for the active, living, working thyroid gland (i.e. a thyroid gland that has not been nuked and that has not been surgically removed)?
I heard "no", surprisingly, so I looked it up. Please weigh in with your data and especially with studies that are real studies, good-science independent studies, as opposed to low-budget academia studies sponsored by industry interests on either side (bad-science junk studies). Also please provide dynamic, that means clickable, links to your information source in your reply, if at all possible PLEASE. The internet is a vast space to wade through. I would not be at all surprised if this has been discussed before on this team but with a team this huge it's not easy to find.
I searched Mary Shomon and only found hits in comments left by others, not in her own writing.
I AM ESPECIALLY INTERESTED IN HEARING WHAT FUNCTIONAL DOCTORS, INTEGRATIVE DOCTORS, AND NATUROPATHIC ND DOCTORS, HAVE TO SAY, IN PRINT, WITH CLICKABLE LINKS.
Here's what I found on the first page of search returns:
www.suite101.com/content/your-thyroi d- gland-a4381 WALNUTS, NO (doesn't say why) "Additionally, there are several foods to avoid if you're hoping to boost thyroid function. Vegetables from the Brassica family, including cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, mustard, and kale, contain a compound known as progoitrin which may depress thyroid function and sabotage those with hypo-thyroid or who wish to lose weight. Turnips, walnuts, and soy are also best avoided. You may be surprised to learn that wintergreen is a thyroid suppressant, since salicylates (the anaesthetic compound in wintergreen and most pain-killing drugs) can interfere with the transport of thyroid hormones (T4) in the bloodstream. Refined sugar and cigarette smoke, obvious health hazards, also suppress the thyroid gland, as do corticosteroids and several pharmaceutical drugs."
www.mayoclinic.com/health/hypothyroi di sm-diet/AN01478 WALNUTS, MAYBE Mayo Clinic, Todd B. Nippoldt, M.D., pooh poohs the idea of a Thyroid Diet "It's also important to note that too much dietary fiber can impair the absorption of synthetic thyroid hormone. Certain foods, supplements and medications can have the same effect. Avoid taking your thyroid hormone at the same time as: list includes walnuts" (Carol's note: I wouldn't take synthetic to begin with, but know others on the team do; and, I thought you're supposed to take it on an empty stomach to begin with; and, he's definitely a traditional doc if Mayo Clinic, so consider the source).
www.hum.org/sluggish_thyroid.html WALNUTS, NO "Certain foods, most notably soy, have been linked to the development of hypothyroid problems, but this controversy remains unresolved. I suspect the soy-hypothyroid link is quite strong when large amounts of soy have been consumed on a prolonged basis. Certain foods, i.e., cabbage, kale, kohlrabi, rutabaga, cauliflower, mustard greens, radishes, broccoli, brussel sprouts, corn, peas, lima beans, sweet potatoes, cassava, sorghum, apricots, prunes, walnuts, cherries, almonds and bamboo shoots contain goitrogens (thyroid suppressants) and/or pro-goitrogens (thyroid stimulants) which, though they probably do not adversely affect those with optimal thyroid function, it may affect those that have been diagnosed with thyroid disease if they are habitually consumed, therefore, it is vitally important to rotate your food choices on a daily basis."
"Drugs and chemicals can also suppress the thyroid gland: sulfa drugs, anti-diabetic medications, prednisone and estrogen in large doses. (birth control pills) The above also interfere with the thyroid gland in the uptake of iodine."
"Two other very important factors that reduce thyroid efficiency are thyocyanide in cigarette smoke and fluorides in municipal water supplies."
"…in his book, Eat right or Die Young, Dr. Cass Ingram explains that high sugar intake can indeed adversely affect the thyroid."
"At a high level of sugar intake, there is a risk of damaging or even destroying the adrenal and thyroid gland. These delicate glands must work overtime to help the body deal with excess sugar . After awhile under the pressure of constant bombardment of refined sugar, these glands literally burn out. To be sure, the glands are capable of regenerating and their function can return if you make the appropriate dietary changes and get off the sugar. There is a risk for permanent damage if you continue your sugar consumption. The more sugar consumed over the years the more likely it is that you will have burned out a portion of your adrenal and thyroid glands."
WALNUTS: YES, SOURCE OF NATURAL SELENIUM "Selenium is a trace mineral that is essential to good health but required only in small amounts [1,2]. Selenium is incorporated into proteins to make selenoproteins, which are important antioxidant enzymes. The antioxidant properties of selenoproteins help prevent cellular damage from free radicals. Free radicals are natural by-products of oxygen metabolism that may contribute to the development of chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease [2,3]. Other selenoproteins help regulate thyroid function and play a role in the immune system [4-7]."
"Human selenium deficiency is rare in the U.S. but is seen in other countries, most notably China, where soil concentration of selenium is low . There is evidence that selenium deficiency may contribute to development of a form of heart disease, hypothyroidism, and a weakened immune system [16,17]. There is also evidence that selenium deficiency does not usually cause illness by itself. Rather, it can make the body more susceptible to illnesses caused by other nutritional, biochemical or infectious stresses ."
www.greendrinkreviews.com/wp/2006/10 /1 3/thyroid-imbalance-an-american-epidR>emic/ WALNUTS: YES, SOURCE OF NATURAL IODINE "Maybe you should pamper your thyroid a bit. The first step is to stop drinking caffeinated beverages. The caffeine causes your adrenal gland to secrete adrenaline, which increases blood sugar levels and therefore energy. But this has negative effects on the thyroid. With the increased energy, the thyroid re-regulates the metabolism and, if repeated every day (from your daily pot of coffee?) then the thyroid goes into hibernation. Take Panax ginseng to help counter this. Ginseng is reported to mitigate the effects of caffeine and stress on the system, including the adrenal gland and thyroid."
"Another way to support the thyroid is with sea kelp. Kelp is rich in natural iodine, which supports your thyroid. Another excellent source of natural iodine is in walnuts."
The thyroid is the regulator of metabolism, which is like the gas pedal of the car. No matter what kind of fuel you put into the car, it won’t go well if the throttle is broken. Use kelp, ginseng, and walnuts to help it out…and go easy on the caffeine."
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