10 Foods to Avoid in Thyroid Disorders, Hypothyroidism, and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis

One of the most important steps in reversing hypothyroidism, Hashimoto’s, and other thyroid and autoimmune disorder symptoms is diet.

While conventional medicine is catching up, those of us working on reversing thyroid disorders know that diet plays a major role in our health. What we eat has a direct impact on our thyroid function.

Every bite you take can either support your healing or exacerbate your symptoms.

Let’s explore the top 10 foods you should avoid to protect and nourish your thyroid while debunking misconceptions about thyroid-healing diets.

Top 10 Food Groups Thyroid Disorder Patients Should Avoid

1. Dairy – A Hormone Disruptor

Many tout dairy as a healthy staple, claiming humans have consumed it for millennia. However, dairy products are detrimental to those with thyroid issues.

Milk from each species has a specific hormonal and nutritional structure for growth for its own species. For example, human milk can triple a baby’s weight in a year, while a calf can quadruple its size from 60 to 400 lbs by weaning time. Imagine what this powerhouse of hormones and nutrients does to a human body meant to grow at a much slower rate (hopefully never coming anywhere near 400 lbs!).

Humans are the only species that consume milk beyond infancy; in the animal kingdom, weaning occurs by 3-12 months of age.

Cow hormones disrupt our endocrine system.

The problem is exacerbated with commercially produced milk due to added growth hormones (rBGH) and antibiotics. These substances inflame the gut and hinder thyroid function, contributing to autoimmune responses. In fact, many countries ban the import of American dairy products due to health and safety concerns.

Casein (the protein in dairy) is also a known carcinogen that can lead to higher cancer mortality.

Dairy products also contribute to mucus production, which can interfere with thyroid function and the absorption of thyroid medication.

But things get even more interesting. Studies show that casein can mimic gluten, causing inflammation in those sensitive to gluten.

Eliminating dairy is crucial for reducing inflammation and improving thyroid health.

2. Animal Products – Acid Forming and Gut Destroying

Animal products, including meat and eggs, are highly acidic and can damage your gut lining. While animal products may have some nutritional value, they generally lack essential nutrients and vitamins needed for overall and thyroid health. The nutrients animal foods possess are a byproduct of their diet. After all, where do they get their nutrients if not from plant foods they eat?!

Moreover, the digestion of animal proteins generates inflammation disrupting gut health and exacerbating thyroid issues.

The high levels of saturated fats and cholesterol in animal products can also lead to heart disease and other chronic conditions, compounding the health challenges faced by those with hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, Hashimoto’s, Grave’s Disease, and other thyroid disorders.


While iodine is essential for thyroid health, iodized salt and iodized products are harmful to health, and especially to thyroid function.

Consuming iodine without balancing it with nutrients like selenium can trigger thyroid inflammation and autoimmune reactions. (note – selenium should come from food sources)

Excessive iodine intake can worsen hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s, leading to more severe symptoms.

Chinese researchers conducted a study that found increased iodine intake is linked to higher rates of hypothyroidism and autoimmune thyroiditis. This study was based on two Chinese communities with different iodine intake levels. The findings indicated that excessive iodine intake significantly increases the prevalence of subclinical hypothyroidism and positive thyroid autoantibodies, which are markers of autoimmune thyroiditis​ (Oxford Academic)​​ (Frontiers)​​ (E-ENM)​.

A study called “Effect of iodine intake on thyroid diseases in China” by X. Teng, Z. Shan, et al. showed that higher dietary iodine levels are associated with an increased prevalence of Graves’ disease, especially in iodine-sufficient areas. (IntechOpen – Open Science Open Minds)​.

While iodine is necessary for health, we do not need as much as we’ve been consuming as a society. More is not better. It is crucial to obtain iodine from natural, balanced sources rather than relying on iodized salt or supplements. Natural sources of iodine come with other beneficial nutrients that support overall health.

You can learn more about the DANGERS OF IODINE SUPPLEMENTATION here.


While gluten has been vilified by the health community, I will go against the grain.

Gluten itself is not inherently evil. The real issue often lies not in the grains but in the chemical treatment of the grains. The chemicals and pesticides used in conventional wheat farming make gluten-containing grains hard to digest for all of us, but especially for those with compromised gut health.

If you are consuming a diet rich in processed and animal foods and add gluten grains to it which are sprayed with glyphosate and other chemicals, the body cannot sustain the burden, so it starts breaking down. The gut is one of the first organs to be affected. And…

As the gut goes, so does the rest of the body.

If you have an autoimmune disorder, you can safely assume that you have a gut issue. There are no exceptions!

So, the diet itself, and the chemicals that come into your system through it, including gluten grains, can trigger inflammation and immune responses.

If you have gut issues or Hashimoto’s, you should avoid gluten to see your symptoms improve. If you have a specific gluten sensitivity or Celiac, gluten grains should be removed permanently.

In all other cases, once you’ve healed your gut, you can opt for organic and ancient grains, which are less likely to be treated with harmful chemicals.

5. Coffee: A Double-Edged Sword

Coffee has become synonymous with modern life. We see everything from simple black coffee to sugar-laden Starbucks drinks, to “bullet coffee” that is touted for its health benefits.

In reality, if we remove all of the commercial noise, the truth is quite simple – caffeine can be detrimental to thyroid health.

The caffeine in coffee can lower free thyroid hormone levels, strain adrenal glands, and disrupt sleep quality.

These effects can exacerbate fatigue and other symptoms associated with thyroid disorders. It also increases stress hormones, and coffee can impair the absorption of thyroid medications. (Reference)

The acidity of coffee can also disrupt gut health, leading to imbalances in gut flora that can negatively impact thyroid function.

The decision whether you choose to enjoy a daily cup of joe is 100% yours. However, knowledge is power if you choose otherwise and keep caffeine only as an occasional treat.

6. Processed Sugar – Sweet Inflammation

Processed sugar is pervasive in the modern diet. By now we all know the dangers of sugar and the fact that it poses a significant risk to overall health, and, in our case to thyroid health specifically, so, we will spend little time discussing it.

In short, processed sugar can cause spikes in blood sugar, lead to insulin resistance, and promote inflammation. This inflammation can worsen autoimmune responses and thyroid dysfunction.

High sugar intake is also linked to weight gain, which can further stress your thyroid gland.

Much like caffeine, sugar should be set aside to be enjoyed only as an occasional treat, if you would like to achieve a healthy thyroid function.

If you are craving sugar, it could be out of habit, or the fact that you have bacterial or parasite overgrowth/infestation. So, it might not even be you craving sugar. But this conversation is for another time.

When you crave sweetness, you can focus on incorporating naturally sweet foods like fruits, which provide fiber, vitamins, and minerals that benefit your overall health.

And if you would like to sweeten a cup of herbal or green tea, you can indulge in a spoonful of honey or agave syrup.

7. Alcohol: A Thyroid Toxin

Since we are on the topic of sugar, why don’t we include its close cousin – alcohol?

Alcoholic beverages can be filled with sugar, but additionally, alcohol is a toxin that wreaks havoc on your thyroid gland and liver.

It impairs the liver’s ability to convert thyroid hormones, essential for maintaining proper thyroid function.

Regular alcohol consumption can lead to inflammation, disrupt endocrine function, and exacerbate symptoms of hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, Hashimoto’s, Grave’s Disease, and other thyroid and autoimmune disorders.

Alcohol also depletes the body of essential nutrients, such as B vitamins, magnesium, and zinc, which are crucial for thyroid health.

The toxic effects of alcohol can weaken the immune system, making it harder for your body to fight off infections and further compromising thyroid function.

If you happen to have the MTHFR genetic mutation, your body will be affected by toxins coming from alcohol at a much higher speed compared to those who do not have this mutation. This means that your body will break down at a much higher speed too.

8. Packaged and Processed Foods

There is no question that packaged foods are convenient. They were invented to make our lives easier. Or so we were told. Yet, they often contain harmful chemicals and stabilizers designed to extend shelf life.

These additives interfere with thyroid function and overall health.

Common additives include artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives, with time will trigger allergic reactions and inflammation.

Some packaged foods also contain harmful plastics and BPA, which disrupt endocrine function and mimic hormones in the body, leading to further hormonal imbalances.

Processed foods are also laden with unhealthy fats that can trigger inflammation and damage your thyroid.

These foods often contain trans fats, high-fructose corn syrup, and artificial ingredients that disrupt metabolic processes and contribute to weight gain.

The high levels of sodium in processed foods can lead to water retention and high blood pressure, further stressing the body.

Yes, it may be easier to reach for prepared pre-packaged foods, but this convenience comes with a price tag. Transitioning to what seems to be less convenient – preparing your food from whole food ingredients, however, can lead to improved thyroid function. So, it is 100% worth the effort.

9. Canned Drinks

Canned drinks, such as sodas and energy drinks, are filled with sugars, artificial sweeteners, and chemicals that disrupt thyroid function. Not to forget that these drinks are often served up to you in metal or plastic-lined containers. Heavy metal toxicity is one of the leading thyroid disruptors, but can also affect your brain and other organs.

These beverages often contain high levels of fructose corn syrup and artificial additives that can lead to inflammation and metabolic imbalances.

The high sugar content in these drinks can cause spikes in blood sugar and insulin levels, leading to weight gain and increased stress on the thyroid gland.

Drinking water and herbal teas becomes a great healthy alternative if you are serious about your thyroid health.

10. Cooking Oils: A Hidden Threat to Your Thyroid

Consuming industrial seed oils and vegetable oils is one of the biggest contributors to the rapid decline in our nation’s health. These oils undergo extensive processing, which results in inflammation that can have lasting harmful effects on the body. Once consumed, these fats integrate into the cell membranes, compromising cellular integrity and disrupting normal cellular functions. This process leads to persistent inflammation and hormonal imbalances.

To protect your thyroid and overall health, avoid these oils at all costs:

  • Soybean oil
  • Peanut oil
  • Corn oil
  • Safflower oil
  • Wheat-germ oil
  • Canola oil
  • Sunflower oil
  • Cottonseed oil
  • Grapeseed oil
  • Rice bran oil

Instead, opt for healthier alternatives – coconut oil, and extra virgin olive oil, but use them sparingly. Why?

High-fat diets have been linked to various hormonal and thyroid issues. Studies indicate that high dietary fat intake, particularly from unhealthy sources like trans fats and saturated fats, can disrupt hormone signaling and contribute to metabolic dysfunctions.

High-fat diets can increase the production of mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS), leading to oxidative stress and impaired insulin sensitivity. This oxidative stress can also affect leptin signaling, a hormone involved in regulating appetite and metabolism, potentially leading to leptin resistance. Leptin resistance is often associated with obesity and metabolic disorders, which can further exacerbate thyroid issues​ (The Institute for Functional Medicine)​.


You might be wondering, ‘What about soy and cruciferous vegetables?”

I am glad you asked. I created separate articles dedicated to each of these items for your enlightenment and health.


It feels daunting to try resolving symptoms of thyroid, hormone, and autoimmune disorders. I’ve been there myself, so I know it first-hand. But it doesn’t have to be that way. There is an easy way to address thyroid disorder symptoms AND reverse them permanently. Look at the resources listed in the PS section of this post for 3 ways you can make that happen for yourself starting now.

Holistic Master Health & Life Coach

P.S. Are you ready for to REVERSE your symptoms and start living your dream life? Here are 3 ways we can help you toward the health you desire:

1. Work with us privately: If you’d like to work directly with me and my team toward eliminating your hormone imbalance symptoms completely, click this link to your SCHEDULE A CONSULTATION CALL, pick the time, and in the appointment form, tell me a little about your current situation and what you’d like to work on together, and then we will see you on the call.

2. Want to test things out on your own first? Get my THYROID & HORMONE DIET and MEAL PLANNER. CLICK HERE

3. Get a Life-Saving Course on 5 Primary Root Causes of Thyroid, Hormone, and Autoimmune Disorders: Learn to identify and address the root causes of your health disorder naturally. CLICK HERE for details and to grab your spot.





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