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The Thyroid Body Type

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 02/13/2016

If you’ve tried to lose weight without any success, you may need to change your method! Focusing on the method that works for your specific body type is key. Find out how to get healthy and lose weight if you have a thyroid body type. 

Thyroid body types

The five body types explained

There are five body types: adrenal, ovary, thyroid, liver, and pancreas. Each of these body types can be identified by your body shape, the location on your body where you gain weight, and your symptoms. You can also try my Body Type Quiz to identify your specific body type!

1. The thyroid body type

Proper thyroid function is critical for the function of every cell in your body. Thyroid body types can be identified by low levels of the thyroid hormones T4 and T3. If you have a thyroid body type, you may experience weight gain all over and not just in one specific area. 

A thyroid body type diet should be a little lower in protein because of a slower metabolism. Iodine is essential because it’s required for thyroid hormone production. Avoid cruciferous vegetables because they deplete iodine. 

Thyroid issues are often secondary issues resulting from high levels of estrogen or a poorly functioning liver. Eighty percent of thyroid hormone conversion occurs in the liver, so poor liver function greatly affects thyroid health. 

2. The adrenal body type

The adrenal body type involves an imbalance of the adrenal hormones and high levels of cortisol. If you notice that you’re gaining weight in the lower abdomen or have a sagging belly, then you’re likely an adrenal body type. The adrenal glands are stress glands—they react and adapt the body to stress.

If you have the adrenal body type, you may have problems with sleep, fertility, digestion, and blood pressure because the body is in a constant state of fight or flight.

An adrenal body type diet should be high in protein, cholesterol, vitamin C, and potassium. Potassium is a physiological relaxer mineral that can calm the fight or flight response. Focus on lowering stress by getting adequate sleep and taking long relaxing walks. 

3. The ovary body type

The ovary body type is characterized by weight gain in the hips, thighs, and lower abdomen—below your belly button. You might also gain weight in your arms and breasts. 

The ovary body type is a result of estrogen dominance. Heavy periods, cramping, and PMS are all symptoms of the ovary body type.

If you have the ovary body type, you may be very sensitive to estrogen and compounds that mimic estrogen, also known as endocrine disruptors. You should consume organic, non-GMO foods that are not contaminated by the herbicide glyphosate, a potent endocrine disruptor. 

Add cruciferous vegetables to the diet because they are antiestrogenic. Adequate iodine intake is important because iodine lowers estrogen naturally. 

4. The liver body type

If you gain weight in your stomach area and have a large, protruding belly, you may have a liver body type. A “beer belly” is the result of excess fat stores and fluid leaking from a damaged liver into your abdominal cavity. Luckily, the liver is the only organ that can completely regenerate itself. 

A liver body type diet should be lower in protein and high in greens and cruciferous vegetables. Cruciferous vegetables help to repair damage to your liver. 

You want to minimize your consumption of nuts because nuts and protein can aggravate the liver. You’ll also want to gradually increase your fat consumption to avoid aggravating the liver.

5. The pancreas body type

The pancreas body type is a result of insulin resistance. It can look exactly like the adrenal body type, but you will notice that what triggers the symptoms is different. 

Frequent eating and consuming high amounts of sugar, processed foods, and refined carbs spike insulin and raise blood sugar levels, contributing to the pancreas body type. It’s the most common body type, but can also be the most difficult to discern because the physical characteristics can vary. 

If you have this body type, avoid spiking insulin by following a ketogenic diet and practicing intermittent fasting. Avoid sugary foods, carbohydrates, fruit juice, and sodas to help stabilize your blood sugar. Choose fattier cuts of meat over lean meats—lean meats have a greater effect on insulin. 

Although it is possible to be a combination of different body types, most people find that one body type is the most dominant. If you have trouble determining which body type you are, it can be helpful to pinpoint when your symptoms began, and the events preceding them. Was it a stressful situation, a sugary treat, too many hot dogs at a cookout, or excessive alcohol? Consider these factors when determining your body type. 

What is the thyroid?

The thyroid gland is about 2.5 inches wide and is located at the base of the neck. Thyroid comes from the Latin word shield, because of its shape. 

The thyroid gland affects every cell in the body and every aspect of your metabolism. If your thyroid is not working properly, you can develop too much potential energy which gets stored in the body as fat. 

Your thyroid gland produces the hormone T4. The four in T4 represents the number of iodine molecules. Your body strips away one of these iodine molecules and creates T3, converting the inactive thyroid prehormone T4 into its active form T3. T3 enters your cells and speeds up your metabolism, leading to weight loss. 

Eighty percent of the conversion of T4 to T3 occurs in the liver and the other 20% occurs in the kidneys. Many people who have issues with their thyroid gland also have a fatty liver. Belly fat can be a sign of a fatty liver, but an ultrasound is necessary to confirm it.  

Hair loss

Thyroid body type symptoms

When thyroid function decreases, over 400 intracellular enzymes are blocked. That means that the enzymes that help your body make protein are also blocked. This shows up in areas that need protein like the hair, nails, skin, and eyes.

Here are some of the potential symptoms of a thyroid body type. 

Fatigue - You often feel lethargic. You’re always tired no matter how much sleep you get.

Hair loss - Your hair is thin and brittle, and you’re experiencing hair loss. You also might be losing some hair on the outer corners of your eyebrows. If you curl your hair, your hair has difficulty holding the curl. 

Weight gain all over - You hold weight all over your body, in no specific location. You have loose skin in the throat area and under the arms.

Cold feet - You have the inability to regulate body temperature. You might wear socks to bed because your feet are cold. Learn more about six causes of cold feet.

Eye problems - You have eye puffiness or floaters in the eyes. 

Nail ridges - You have vertical ridges on your nails

Abnormal tongue - Your tongue is thicker than normal or you have indentations on the sides of your tongue.

Food cravings - You experience frequent food cravings for carbohydrates, bread, sugars, and other highly processed foods.  

Avoid highly processed foods

What is the thyroid body type diet?

Following a diet that caters to your body type can help you get healthy, lose weight and achieve your ideal body shape. Combining keto and intermittent fasting for a thyroid body type diet can help you restore your energy levels and lose the extra weight. Here are the key elements of the body type diet. 

Low-protein 

If you have a thyroid body type, you need to be mindful of your liver. Make sure not to consume more than 3 ounces of protein per meal so that you don’t aggravate your liver. Soy protein can suppress your thyroid gland, so avoid things like soy milk, tofu, and other soy-based foods. Soy-based foods can also increase estrogen, which is problematic for thyroid body types. 

Low-fat

Although the ketogenic diet is the best thing for a thyroid body type, you want to gradually increase your fat intake over time. If you have an underactive thyroid, you don’t want to overwhelm the body with too much fat at once. Avoid fried foods and foods with a high fat content to prevent weight gain and to avoid aggravating your liver. 

Avoid cruciferous vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables deplete iodine, which is essential for the production of thyroid hormones. Adequate iodine levels are imperative to restore proper thyroid function. You can help combat iodine deficiency with sea kelp, seaweed, and shellfish.

Avoid low-calorie diets

If you lower your calories, you also lower your nutritional intake. This starves the metabolism and metabolic body and makes it very difficult to achieve adequate intakes of important vitamins and nutrients. This can slow down your thyroid even more. 

Weight loss

How to fix a thyroid body type and lose weight

Many doctors will wait until a thyroid issue shows up on a blood test to take action. By the time a thyroid problem shows up, your thyroid will already be pretty damaged. Here are some things to focus on to help support a thyroid body type and speed up weight loss. 

Keto and intermittent fasting

Removing the refined carbs and processed foods from your diet will greatly improve the health of your thyroid. If you have a slow metabolism or a hypothyroid condition, working towards only one meal per day may be necessary for weight loss, especially if you gain weight easily. 

Selenium

Selenium is crucial for thyroid hormone conversion. The enzymes that allow you to convert T4 to T3 involve selenium. Selenium has many antioxidant benefits and removes excess hydrogen peroxide from the body. 

Choline

Choline is a powerful mineral that helps strip fat off your liver. Improving a fatty liver also improves T4 to T3 conversion. Choline is essential for healthy thyroid and liver function. 

Iodine 

Iodine deficiency can lead to poor thyroid health. For proper thyroid function, you need to make sure you have enough iodine in your diet. Sometimes, consuming iodine in your diet may not be enough to prevent iodine deficiency. 

It’s important to avoid goitrogenic foods because they deplete iodine and may increase your risk of developing a goiter. Cassava can be especially problematic because it contains hydrocyanic acid and thiocyanate which bind to, and block, iodine. 

Zinc

Zinc is a powerful mineral that can help improve almost every side effect of a poorly functioning thyroid. Zinc benefits the thyroid and also benefits the liver. Oysters, meat, and pumpkin seeds are excellent sources of zinc.

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Key takeaways

If you have a thyroid body type, you can improve your condition by getting healthy and losing weight with keto and intermittent fasting. Gradually working towards one meal a day can help you lose weight, especially with a sluggish metabolism. 

It’s important not to limit calories so you can absorb adequate vitamins and minerals. If you have a thyroid body type, you may have difficulty absorbing vitamins, so it’s important not to limit your nutritional intake.

Eighty percent of thyroid hormone conversion occurs in the liver. Focusing on liver health and improving a fatty liver can greatly improve a thyroid body type. 

FAQs

1. Is there a thyroid body type?

Yes! If you do not have enough of the active thyroid hormone T3, you will likely gain weight easily and have the characteristics of a thyroid body type. 

2. What is the thyroid body type?

Thyroid body types experience low thyroid function. If you gain weight all over and not just in one specific area, you may be a thyroid body type.

3. What does the thyroid body type look like?

If the thyroid is not working properly, you will develop too much potential energy. Potential energy is stored as fat, so thyroid types often experience weight gain all over their body.

4. How can I lose weight with a thyroid body type? 

Keto and intermittent fasting can help you lose weight if you have a thyroid body type. One meal a day can be very beneficial if you have a slower metabolism. 

5. What can I eat for the thyroid body type?

Following a Healthy Keto™ diet and practicing intermittent fasting is perfect for thyroid body types. You’ll eventually want to consume only one large meal per day. Make sure that you consume enough calories or you will end up with an even slower metabolism. 

6. What is the best exercise for the thyroid body type? 

Any exercise is beneficial for the thyroid types. Aerobic exercise and HIIT can be especially beneficial and can help improve a fatty liver as well. 

7. Is the keto diet good for the thyroid body type?

Yes, especially combined with intermittent fasting. Carbohydrates contribute to numerous health conditions including a fatty liver which can inhibit the conversion of T4 to T3. By implementing Healthy Keto, you can also ensure that your essential mineral intake will be higher, improving your thyroid function and the production of thyroid hormones.

8. How can I detox the thyroid body type? 

Healthy Keto and intermittent fasting are the best ways to detox the thyroid body type. You can also try my Thyroid Body Type Package, which was designed specifically for thyroid types.

9. What is hypothyroidism?

If you have hypothyroidism, your body doesn’t produce adequate thyroid hormones. This can cause you to gain weight easily all over your body. Ninety percent of hypothyroidism cases are considered Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism. This means that your immune system is attacking your thyroid gland. Other cases are attributed to estrogen dominance and liver issues.

10. What is hyperthyroidism?

Hyperthyroidism is characterized by an overactive thyroid and actually contributes to excessive weight loss rather than weight gain. This is more common in women, especially after giving birth.

11. Can people with hypothyroidism be slim?

Absolutely! If you focus on keto, intermittent fasting, proper exercise, and proper diet for your body type, it is possible to be “slim” with hypothyroidism. It’s also important to focus on your essential mineral intake. Selenium, iodine, zinc, and choline are essential for the health of your thyroid. 

12. Why do people with hypothyroidism gain weight? 

If you have hypothyroidism, you lack the adequate thyroid hormones necessary to speed up your metabolic rate. An underactive thyroid slows down your metabolism.

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