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Thyroid and Gluten: Should You Avoid Gluten With Hashimoto’s?

Thyroid, Gluten, Wheat, Hashimoto's, Autoimmune thyroid, Graves Disease, Gluten Free

Thyroid and Gluten: Should You Avoid Gluten With Hashimoto’s?

You might’ve heard about the thyroid and gluten connection + you might have had a practitioner in the past tell you to avoid gluten if you have Hashimoto’s. Are you thinking that’s crazy talk? Let’s talk about the research that is found with this connection + why the heck this is even recommended?

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Thyroid and Gluten Connection

Let’s start off by looking at a study because you know that recommendations we give are often derived from studies….

A study of 34 women with Hashimoto’s divided them into 2 groups: 1 group consuming a gluten free diet + the other group consuming a normal diet. They followed this diet for 6 months. In the women that remained on a regular diet, they had similiar antibody levels compared to their baseline levels.

In the women that consumed a gluten-free diet, their thyroid antibodies were decreased + even saw an increase in vitamin D levels.

You might be asking why is this? There is a something called molecular mimicry, which is where when someone consumes wheat that contains proteins like gluten + gliadin that is similiar in molecular structure to transglutaminase (an enzyme that is found in the thyroid) + it will trigger the immune system + it can increase the damage to thyroid.

Now, there is also a link between someone having autoimmune thyroid, such as Hashimoto’s or Graves, and having celiac disease too! There is a much higher prevalence of autoimmune thyroid in celiac patients.

Other observations that are found is that out of 79 celiac patients in a study – 13.9% of patients had autoimmune thyroid and 10.1% of patients had subclinical thyroid issues. There was also a decreased response in the thyroid during ultrasounds in 73% of celiac patients. These ultrasound results are associated with positive thyroid antibodies.

Should You Avoid Gluten If You Have Hashimoto’s?

In short answer, yes. I think it’s very beneficial to tweak your diet to avoid proteins, gluten + gliadin, that is found in wheat, rye, + barley. Usually when people switch from wheat, they choose more nutrient dense options of foods in common wheat products. Such as chickpea pasta, almond flour tortillas, etc.

Are you ready to understand your body + work with a qualified practitioner to give you what YOU should be doing? Our team of dietitians + nutritionists are incredible of creating the plan that is right for YOU + provide evidence based recommendations. Learn more about what we do + book a free call with us over on our Services page!

Lahana Vigliano, CCN
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Lahana Vigliano

Lahana Vigliano is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist and CEO of Nuvitru Wellness. She has her Bachelor's Degree in Nutrition Science and Masters Degree in Nutrition Science and Functional Medicine. She is currently pursuing her doctorate degree in Clinical Nutrition. Lahana and her team help support women who struggle with weight loss, hormonal imbalances, digestive issues, chronic fatigue, and many other lingering issues that leaves women not feeling their best. She uses food as medicine, as well as herbs and supplements when needed, to support her clients. She looks at the whole body holistically making sure women are understanding how nutrition, sleep, stress, and their environment impact their health. Connect with her on Facebook + Instagram (@nuvitruwellness).