One of the many symptoms I experience with having Hashimoto’s, and one of the issues that causes me the most stress, is my metabolism.
Or specifically – my slow, useless son of a bit*h metabolism.
As soon as my pants begin to tighten, I know things are not running smooth and efficiently. Of course, I experience a load of other symptoms at the same time, but this is my “confirmation” symptom.
This pretty obvious realisation has led me down the pathway of actually finding out what’s really happening inside my body to cause my metabolism to slow down and what, if any, simple steps can be taken to help give it a kick up the bum.
3 factors that play a huge part in our metabolism (weight management), which have jumped out at me are:
1. Liver health
2. Thyroid health
3. Adrenal health
Today I’m starting with the big one.
Often referred to as the “engine” in our body as it is essential in keeping us running AND is the major fat-burning organ of our body. Virtually every nutrient, hormone and chemical must be broken down(metabolised) by the liver before it does us any good.
When we over tax our liver it becomes unbalanced and unhappy, producing symptoms which can include:
- Poor digestion, bloating, constipation and weight gain around the tummy
- Bad breath
- Coated tongue in the morning
- Mood swings and `foggy brain'
- Hay fever, asthma and skin irritation
- High blood pressure and/or fluid retention
- Unstable blood sugar levels - causing fatigue, dizziness, light-headedness and sugar cravings
Sheesh…..I find it mind blowing the amount of everyday ailments we all simply “put up with” (me included!), thinking they’re normal when they could actually be because our liver is being over worked. Yes, many of the above symptoms can be contributed to a number of other health issues, however if you could improve these symptoms, or alleviate them all together, by simply tweaking your diet and lifestyle, wouldn’t you want to give it a try? Seriously?
So for those of you, like me, wanting to show your liver a little love and help kick your metabolism into gear, I’ve listed below a few simple steps that I’m incorporating into my own day to day lifestyle:
Filtered water | drinking 8-10 glasses of filtered water each day helps to cleanse the liver (and kidneys), helping eliminate toxins and promoting weight loss. Try to avoid drinking large amounts of liquid with meals as this can hinder digestion – especially important for those of us with Hashimoto’s and digestion issues.
Eat when hungry | take the time to listen to your body – don't eat if you're not hungry! I'll be the first to admit that this is a hard one for me. I have a lifetime habit of eating my meals at certain times on the clock - not when my body actually tells me it’s hungry. I’m finding a lot of talk and studies showing that placing our mealtimes around our hunger and not the clock can be beneficial and less taxing on our livers and digestive system.
Chew | chew your food slowly and thoroughly, as digestion begins with the saliva in your mouth. Chewing breaks down the food, helping our liver perform more optimally.
Avoid Sugar | fructose in particular, as our liver will store and convert this into fat and cholesterol. This fat can cause the liver to become inflamed and even scarred, leading to cirrhosis, liver damage and fatty liver disease.
Consume “real food” | enjoy wholefoods and where possible organic (free of pesticides), avoiding processed “food’ products containing preservatives, colourings, flavourings and artificial sweeteners. Try eating liver friendly foods, like beets, carrots, green leafy vegetables, avocados, olive oil and garlic.
Is there anything you're doing to help boost your metabolism?