Sport and exercise outdoors are always good and healthy. However, if you suffer from the autoimmune disease Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, there are often a few obstacles due to the many symptoms and side effects. However, physical training does not have to be automatically and completely dispensed with, only a few things should be observed.
Do sport – but in moderation
It is possible that you are not always able to really do sports due to the autoimmune disease due to the existing symptoms and concomitant diseases.
If you belonged to the type of “energetic jock” before the disease, you will really be missing something if you have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and/or leaky gut syndrome , metabolic diseases, heart diseases or a lack of vitamin B12 or iron is too weak and lacking in drive.
But a little exercise definitely can’t hurt, because exercise can really have a positive effect on ailing health.
But beware! Do not exaggerate! It is not uncommon for people to actually want to do more and more in this respect, but often cannot. The spirit is willing, but often enough the physical constitution just doesn’t allow it.
Therefore, the recommendation is: Doing some sport is perfectly fine, but not the full endurance and power-packed fitness program. As a “Hashi” you have to be guided by your own physical condition when it comes to sporting activities.
While one person can still run 10 kilometers despite everything, the next one can take a somewhat long walk to reach their limits.
My tip: A conversation with the doctor treating you usually opens up a common and feasible path. Because sometimes a sports check-up is necessary, especially if there are cardiovascular problems or limitations of the musculoskeletal system.
Good reasons to do sports
Of course, exercising is always a good idea and usually very healthy, as long as personal, physical limitations are not ignored. In order to keep your body in good shape, exercise and moderate sport are essential and also bring other good reasons to overcome your weaker self and incorporate exercise into everyday life:
- Stress relief and deceleration
- Strengthening of the heart and circulatory system
- Strengthening of the immune system
- Better mood due to happiness hormones
- Better sleep
- blood sedimentation
- Reduction of tension
- weight loss
Why you can’t and shouldn’t exercise like you used to?
If you take a quick look inside and think about your physical sensitivities, you may be able to answer this question. As a Hashimoto’s thyroiditis patient, the personal performance limit has clearly shifted downwards.
Excessive exercise, however, can also have negative effects such as:
- the movement and exertion creates stress in the body and causes it to tire more quickly
- the constant cortisol secretion worsens and can exhaust the adrenal glands
- the need for thyroid hormones increases and may need to be adjusted
- the iodine requirement increases and may have to be adjusted
In addition, people with Hashimoto usually consume significantly more trace elements and vitamins than healthy people due to the autoimmune process and a frequently ailing intestine.
With the additional sport, this need increases again and you can no longer avoid appropriate food supplements . So always keep an eye on your micronutrient supply and have it checked regularly in whole blood.
What can you do to recover better after exercising?
People with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis should pay special attention to their lifestyle and diet so as not to put unnecessary and additional strain on their bodies. This applies in particular to:
During sleep, the body regenerates and produces new cells. If the sleep is bad, superficial or simply too short, the regeneration phase is too short and the performance limit is lower.
- Conscious nutrition
Sugar, wheat products and too many unhealthy fats put a strain on the digestive tract and thus on the entire body. Inflammation ensues, energy levels plummet and rapid recovery is delayed.
- Avoiding alcohol
Alcohol acidifies the muscle tissue and robs the muscle of energy. Alcohol also impairs restful sleep, thereby reducing performance on a sports day and impeding regeneration.
- Antioxidant food supplements
Antioxidants are able to counteract inflammation after exercise and break down degradation and by-products that occur during exercise more quickly and render them harmless.
What can you do to compensate for possible problems after sporting activities?
- As already mentioned, consultation with the doctor treating you should be held in advance. On the one hand, to be able to better assess your personal upper limit and, on the other hand, to find an ideal sport activity together without unnecessarily putting even more strain on your already stressed body.
- Under certain circumstances, it may be necessary to adjust the dosage of your medication and thyroid hormones to this physical strain.
- It is also best to always use the times when you feel particularly good and good for sporting activities. However, it is important in advance that you can assess yourself and your highs and lows well.
- In order to be able to better compensate for the loss of micronutrients that you experience during sport, I can only recommend paying more attention to a balanced diet and, if necessary , taking food supplements in the form of tablets.
Which sports are suitable for Hashimoto sufferers?
All sports that are not too intense and that demand a lot from the body are also well suited for Hashimoto patients. Here are some example sports that can be practiced without any problems:
- to jog
- to go biking
- Light weight training
- To dance
10 tips for sports training with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and hypothyroidism
- Do not start an exercise program without first talking to your doctor.
- Start slow, especially if you are just starting out or are experiencing severe symptoms.
- Don’t forget to stretch thoroughly before exercising to avoid injury.
- Start with light and not too intensive sports.
- Integrate light strength training into your sports program to strengthen the entire musculature.
- Try doing different sports on a rotating basis.
- Plan small sports units as fixed dates on a few days of the week.
- Don’t overdo it, even if things seem to be going well.
- If you have the opportunity: Consider working with a qualified personal trainer.
- Listen to your body!
Even if you have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, you don’t have to do without sport. Hiking, cycling, swimming or jogging, for example, are usually also doable for “Hashis”. However, always according to your own sensitivities and in consultation with the doctor.
In addition, extreme and particularly strenuous sport is just as taboo as competitive sport and power fitness. Never push your personal performance limit to the limit, as this will usually quickly have a negative effect on the course of the disease.