Modern Day Doctor | Ancient Wisdom

Natural Treatment For Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis

What is Hashimoto’s Disease?

Hashimoto’s Disease is an autoimmune disorder that affects the thyroid and causes a type of hypothyroidism known as Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. Antibodies are created and attack the thyroid gland, causing it to release fewer hormones. Since the thyroid controls metabolism, it affects every organ in the body, including your heart, and the digestive system. According to NIH, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis is much more common in females than males, affecting 7 in 10 females in the US. 

Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis occurs when the immune system has been dysregulated in some way. Normally the immune system protects the body against harmful invaders, like viruses, bacteria, or toxins. When an autoimmune condition is present, signals get mixed up and the immune system will “attack” healthy cells as if they were an invader.  

Symptoms of Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis include: 

  • An enlarged thyroid (goiter)
  • Fatigue
  • Brain fog
  • Weight gain
  • Digestive issues
  • Depression & Anxiety
  • Hair loss
  • Dry skin
  • Heavy or irregular menstrual cycles
  • Sleep issues
  • Chronic blood sugar imbalance
  • Issues regulating body temperature
  • Bone loss
  • Joint pain

Hashimoto’s disease is diagnosed by a review of symptoms, medical history, family history, and a physical exam. Blood tests will also be done to confirm the diagnosis:


  • Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) will be tested. High TSH means the body is not making enough thyroid hormone and indicates hypothyroidism.


  • Free Thyroxine (Free T4). Low levels of this hormone usually indicate hypothyroidism.


  • Thyroid Antibody testing. This is the test that will distinguish hypothyroidism as autoimmune Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. When antithyroid antibodies are present, this indicates autoimmunity.

Naturally Sue Wellness Logo

Fast Forward to Feeling Better

Healing that Addresses the Root Cause

How to Find the Root Cause of Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis?

There are some common risk factors that your doctor will look at to determine the likelihood of Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. Frequent risk factors associated with Hashimoto’s disease include:


  • Genetics: A family history of Hashimoto’s disease will put one at increased risk for developing the disease, as will a family history of other autoimmune conditions.


  • Gender: According to NIH, women develop Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis at a greater rate than men.


  • Age: Women ages 30-50 are more often diagnosed, according to research.


  • Presence of other autoimmune disorders. The presence of other autoimmune conditions, like celiac, disease, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and Sjogren’s will increase the risk of developing Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. 

There may be multiple, potential underlying causes for Hashimoto’s that your Naturopath will look into. Common root causes of Hashimoto’s disease include:


  • Chronic inflammation. Research shows that prolonged, chronic inflammation of the thyroid gland and thyroid gland damage, can eventually cause autoimmunity.


  • Leaky Gut/Gut Health. A leaky gut can lead to immune dysregulation and cause an overactive immune response, leading to autoimmunity.


  • Gluten intolerance. Gluten sensitivity or allergy is one of the most common underlying lifestyle factors for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. The proteins in gluten and the thyroid are similar. Because of the similarity in proteins, when someone with Hashimoto’s consumes gluten, the immune system can attack the thyroid.


  • Infections, like Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), Herpes, H. Pylori, and cytomegalovirus (CMV)


  • Environmental toxins, like heavy metals and pesticides. 

Identifying the root cause of your Hashimoto’s will help your naturopath devise the most appropriate treatment plan for you. 

Natural Treatments and Remedies for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis

Hormonal treatment for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis is only necessary when thyroid hormones are below normal. When treatments are necessary, they are most effective when the underlying cause is addressed. Conventional thyroid medications work well for supplementing the thyroid hormones with synthetic hormones, but they don’t resolve the autoimmune dysfunction. Natural treatments for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis are centered around addressing the root cause and making lifestyle changes, such as:

  • Nutrition. An autoimmune protocol is helpful by eliminating triggering foods and incorporating healing foods.

  • Supplements. Supplementation to address nutritional deficiencies and regulate immune system function.

  • Detoxification. Detoxification of toxins, like heavy metals, mycotoxins, and pesticides, and working to boost the body’s natural ability to detoxify.

  • Stress management. Studies show that stress management should be an essential part of treatment for all autoimmune conditions. 

The use of herbs has also been shown to complement and support the treatment of the above root cause areas. Depending on your root cause, your naturopath may use any of the following herbs in your Hashimoto’s disease treatment plan: 

  • Adaptogens, like ashwagandha, help support adrenals and the negative effects of chronic and prolonged stress. 

  • Antiviral herbs, like lemon balm, cordyceps, or oregano suppress viral activity. 

  • Gut-supporting herbs, like licorice, slippery elm, and marshmallow root repair the gut lining. 

  • Detoxifying herbs, like nigella sativa, cilantro, or dandelion root to flush out toxins or heavy metals. 

The Autoimmune Protocol Diet

The autoimmune protocol diet is an elimination diet where possible inflammatory foods are removed from the diet. Foods are then reintroduced slowly to see how the body responds to eating them again. If there is an adverse response, such as digestive distress, it could indicate an intolerance to that food. The goal is to identify foods that cause inflammation and replace them with nutrient-dense, anti-inflammatory foods that will decrease inflammation and increase immunity, improve gut health, and help re-regulate hormone function. Studies show that an autoimmune protocol diet improves symptoms in Hashimoto’s patients. 

There are 3 phases of an autoimmune protocol diet: 

  • Elimination
  • Reintroduction
  • Maintenance 

Common foods that trigger an immune response in Hashimoto’s patients that should be eliminated include:

  • Refined sugars
  • Processed foods
  • Alcohol
  • Coffee
  • Industrial seed oils
  • Food additives

The following foods will also be temporarily eliminated in the first phase because they have been known to be common triggers for inflammation in some people:

  • Dairy
  • Eggs
  • Grains
  • Legumes
  • Nightshade vegetables
  • Nuts and seeds

These foods will be reintroduced to see how the body responds. 

What is the Best Diet for Hashimoto’s?

The best diet for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis is an anti-inflammatory diet, rich in vegetables, fruits, lean meats, and fiber. Eliminate foods that destroy intestinal flora, and cause chronic blood sugar imbalance, and inflammation, like sugar and processed food. Ensuring a variety of gut-healing foods and fermented foods to help with restoring intestinal flora for a healthy microbiome. According to research, patients with Hashimoto’s disease should include foods that fulfill any nutritional deficiencies or other nutrient needs, such as:  

  • Vitamin D deficiency, iodine, selenium, B12, and others, as identified by your naturopath. 

  • Foods high in antioxidants, like vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin E to decrease oxidative stress

  • Foods with amino acids

  • Probiotic foods

In general, the best foods for someone with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis include:

  • Fresh vegetables
  • Fresh fruits
  • Fermented foods, like sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha
  • Seaweed 
  • Fish and seafood
  • Organ meats, like liver
  • Lean beef, pork, and poultry
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Olive oil, avocado, and other sources of omega-3 fats. 

Foods to avoid include inflammatory foods, or immune trigger foods, like, processed foods, refined sugar, alcohol, gluten, and dairy (for some people). 

Work with your naturopath to discover nutritional deficiencies and food intolerances to get a better understanding of the best Hashimoto’s diet for you. Try our Free 10-minute Consultation and see what works best for you!

Consider Avoiding Dairy

Dairy is inflammatory in some people and it is generally recommended that people with Hashimoto’s disease avoid it. Due to the processing of dairy and additives to modern dairy products, dairy has been known to cause digestive distress, and inflammation as a result. According to NIH, when dairy was eliminated from Hashimoto’s patients’ diets, inflammatory markers improved, as did digestion and symptoms like bloating, diarrhea, and acid reflux. 

Is a Gluten-free Diet Enough to Cure Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis Naturally?

A gluten-free diet is usually one of the first steps a naturopath might take in natural disease management for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. It is recommended that anyone with a Hashimoto avoid foods that contain gluten to prevent the immune system from destroying the thyroid. This means eating more whole grains and not just switching your processed wheat cookies for gluten-free cookies.

It turns out that the protein in wheat is very similar in structure to that of the thyroid gland. This protein is called gliadin. When gliadin gets through the lining of the gut and into the bloodstream, the immune system flags it as an invader and attacks it. Since the thyroid is so similar in structure to gliadin, the immune antibodies also attack thyroid tissue. 

Research has established a strong link between autoimmune thyroid disease and gluten intolerance. The link is so strong, that it is recommended that those with Hashimoto’s disease also be screened for gluten intolerances and celiac disease. 

Going gluten-free may not cure Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, but it can help manage the disease by improving inflammation and symptoms. 

Reduce and Manage Stress

Stress is a contributing factor to hypothyroidism. When the stress hormone, cortisol, is high, it sends signals to slow down the production of thyroid hormones. If stress remains high, the production of thyroid hormones remains suppressed. Stress can also affect your gut and immune regulation. Researchers found that people with chronic and prolonged stress were more likely to develop an autoimmune disorder, like Hashimoto’s, and more likely to develop more than one autoimmune disorder. According to NIH, symptoms and well-being in women with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis improved with the addition of stress management techniques. 

  • Recuperative sleep promotes the body’s natural ability to heal and replenish energy reserves.

  • Mindfulness practices, such as deep breathing & meditation.

  • Mind-body practices, such as yoga, Tai Chi, or qigong.

  • Regular exercise. Low-impact, repetitive, physical activities such as walking, swimming, and biking are the least stressful on the body.

  • A regular diet that includes nutrient-dense foods promotes blood sugar stability and optimizes the gut microbiome so it can send the right signals to the brain. 

Stress-reducing activities are different for everyone. Choose something that promotes relaxation and activates the body’s natural calming ability. The key is to make it a daily habit– a regular part of your daily routine.  

Patient Success Story:

I had a patient visit with a 38-year-old female who had been diagnosed with Hypothyroidism. The patient reported fatigue, anxiety, hair loss, dizziness, and joint pain. I recommended she be tested for Hashimoto’s, which is an autoimmune thyroid disorder. Many people have thyroid antibodies first and then if left untreated, turn to hypothyroidism. 

A thyroid antibody called Anti-TPO (also known as anti-thyroglobulin) was >1000 in her blood work when she was first tested and within the year went down to 423, then 214, and now 70! The normal range is <35 and we are continuing to work to get her into Hashimoto’s remission. 

This patient’s thyroid antibodies have come down significantly through a gluten and dairy-free diet, antioxidants, repleting the vitamins and minerals she was deficient in (including iron), detoxing from heavy metals, working on chronic infections and viral reactivations, hormone support, biotherapeutic drainage, and more.  

While there are general tactics as described in this article that can support people’s thyroid health, this patient’s health plan was specifically chosen for her and her unique case. Through her clinical history and her labs, we were able to put together a plan that was systematic and worked for the patient.

The patient is extremely pleased with these results and learned that naturopathy can reverse disease processes.  If this sounds like something you are interested in, book a free consultation here. 

Final Thoughts and Key Takeaways

  • Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is an autoimmune condition that causes the body to create antibodies that attack the thyroid gland, causing thyroid gland damage and a disruption in its ability to produce hormones. 

  • Symptoms may include unexplained weight gain, fatigue, joint pain, digestive issues, or an enlarged thyroid, among others. 

  • Treatment isn’t necessary if hormone levels are normal. Addressing the underlying cause is the best way to prevent symptoms and progression of the condition. 

  • An autoimmune protocol diet is a good way to identify foods that may trigger inflammation and an immune response. 

  • Anti-inflammatory and gluten-free foods are a first-line therapy for managing Hashimoto’s symptoms naturally and complement treatment with synthetic thyroid hormone medication.

  • Incorporating stress management into daily life is a good way to keep symptoms at bay and for overall well-being. 

Start your healing journey with us through our free 10-minute consultation

Table of Contents

Recent Posts

Share this Post

You May Also Enjoy

Holistic Treatment for Anxiety

Understanding Anxiety Anxiety is a complex condition that can have both physical and psychological components. From a holistic medical perspective, anxiety involves the interplay between genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors. Here are a few takeaways from a holistic viewpoint: It’s

Read More »

Increasing Fertility Naturopathically

The month of April sees National Infertility Awareness Week, a full seven days dedicated to a struggle that roughly 17.5% of women in the world experience.  Infertility can be one of the most isolating experiences for both men and women.

Read More »


Sign up for my newsletter for the latest holistic health advice. By signing up, you will receive my Healthy Lifestyle guide right away to your inbox! This guide will have the most important tips and tools to get started on a holistic lifestyle!

We will never spam you or share your email with anyone. In addition to the guide you’ll also receive semi-regular email updates with tips, tools, offers and exclusive resources. All emails include an unsubscribe link, you may opt-out at any time. Read our Privacy Policy to see how your data is handled.

open magazine featuring Dr. Susan Cucchiara''s 12 steps to health success publication