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Weight Loss for Hypothyroid Patients
Maintaining a healthy weight can be a challenge for any adult, as the increasing prevalence of obesity in the United States and around the world clearly confirms. The hectic modern lifestyle leaves most people little time to exercise regularly and prepare wholesome foods. Over time, drive-thru fare and takeout dinners can turn into extra pounds.
Even those who make a practice of eating right and exercising can experience difficulty maintaining a healthy weight. The aging process and related health problems often tend to promote weight gain, and over the course of a few years, these gradual increases can ultimately result in obesity. Since carrying excess weight often worsens a person’s existing health issues, the outcome can be a vicious cycle of illness and obesity from which it is very difficult to break free.
If maintaining a healthy weight can pose a formidable challenge even for healthy adults who are conscientious about sticking to a healthy diet and fitness regimen, it can feel like a frustrating debacle for those who suffer from thyroid problems. Hypothyroidism and other conditions that slow down metabolic function often cause weight gain and make weight loss difficult. But over the last several years, research has revealed new methods that may lend hope to hypothyroid patients who are hoping to lose weight.
Metabolism Woes: The Root of Hypothyroid-Related Weight Gain
The thyroid gland -- and the hormones it produces and distributes throughout the adrenal system -- help keep the body up to speed. These hormones regulate the metabolism, which is the system of processes by which energy is processed, stored, and used for fuel.
Very generally speaking, people with slow metabolisms gain weight easily and have difficulty shedding excess pounds, while those with faster metabolisms usually have little trouble staying trim, even with occasional overindulgences. Either way, your metabolic rate strongly influences the way that the body handles calories and regulates weight.
In hypothyroidism, the thyroid functions at a much slower rate than it should. This, in turn, slows down the entire metabolism, thus prompting weight gain. Indeed, one of the most widely recognized symptoms of hypothyroidism is an unusual weight gain that can’t otherwise be explained.
Not only does hypothyroidism make it all too easy to gain excess weight, but it also renders the process of shedding those extra pounds very difficult. A metabolism that has been slowed by hypothyroidism can often be very resistant to even the most concerted weight loss efforts.
The experience of following a diet and exercise plan to the letter and still making no discernible progress has discouraged many hypothyroid patients who are trying to make a healthy lifestyle change. After weeks or even months of little or no tangible results, many lose confidence in their ability to lose weight normally and give up altogether.
A Custom Weight-Loss Plan for Those with Hypothyroidism
While the prospect of weight loss can pose a serious challenge for hypothyroid patients, it’s not impossible. In fact, it’s mostly just a matter of convincing your metabolism to join in on the effort. Using a variety of methods, hypothyroid patients can get their metabolism up to speed and shed excess pounds, although it may take more time and effort than it does for people with normal thyroid function.
What’s the secret to weight loss success for hypothyroid patients? You don’t necessarily have to work harder, just smarter. Combining multiple tactics at the same time, you can increase the rate of your metabolism and likely begin to see results within several weeks of starting the program.
Strategies for Jump-Starting a Sluggish Metabolism and Weight Loss
The hypothyroid patient’s ideal action plan for weight loss has to be specially targeted to increase metabolic functioning. By combining several strategies to bump up the metabolism all at once, it’s more likely that your weight loss efforts will begin to be rewarded with visible results.
- Ensure that you are being treated with the proper dose of a suitable hypothyroid medication.
- Include regular exercise in your plan to help combat metabolic resistance and increase your basal metabolic rate.
- Avoid simple carbohydrates and emphasize protein and whole grains to help overcome insulin resistance.
- Drink 64-100+ ounces of calorie-free liquids each day to help eliminate the retention bloat that can add as many five to ten pounds to your physique.
- Seek out support from fellow hypothyroid patients during your weight loss journey. Sometimes, only those who have faced the same kind of challenges can offer the comfort you’ll need to work through the inevitable difficulties of the process.
For Further Reading
Note: The contents of this blog are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be construed as medical advice or as a substitute for professional care. This site should not be used in place of professional medical advice. The author is not a physician. For medical emergencies, call 911!
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