December 27, 2010

Gluten, Selenium Deficiency, and Thyroid Disease

 

A new study sheds light on the fact that selenium deficiency can be caused by gluten induced malabsorption.  The researchers go on to say that Selenium deficiency can cause thyroid diseases and can lead to unregulated inflammatory damage…

Regarding gluten sensitivity –

the target organs are not limited to the gut, but include thyroid, liver, skin and reproductive and nervous systems…

Regarding selenium deficiency -

Thus, selenium malabsorption in CD (celiac disease) can be thought as a key factor directly leading to thyroid and intestinal damage.

Source:

Ann Ist Super Sanita. 2010;46(4):389-399.

It is no medical mystery that gluten can cause vitamin and mineral deficiencies.  Selenium is a mineral with multiple functions within the body.  A short list of some of selenium’s more common roles is listed below:

  • It plays a role in the production of active thyroid hormone (see chart below).
  • It is a powerful anti-inflammatory and helps to regulate immune function.
  • It plays a role in blood viscosity (reduces excessive clotting of the blood).
  • It drives the most powerful antioxidant system in the body.

This study points out that no only does gluten induced selenium deficiency cause abnormal thyroid hormone production, it leads to excessive inflammation and autoimmune disease.

In previous posts we have discussed how going on a gluten free diet can lead to fat loss.  This is one of those mechanisms as hypothyroid disease is a common manifestation of gluten intolerance.

It is time for doctors to start ruling out gluten sensitivity and celiac disease in patients with thyroid disease.   It is time for doctors to start recognizing the therapeutic benefit of a gluten free diet.   If you think that this information will help someone you love suffering with a thyroid problem, please forward this along.

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10 Responses to “Gluten, Selenium Deficiency, and Thyroid Disease”

  • Michel@e Moon says:

    On Dec 29, 2010 at 10:54 AM from Michelle:
    I was diagnosed with a under active thyroid three yes., ago an have been taking medicine since then an before that I was diagnosed with a Wheat – Glute Senativety Nine Years Ago an once I started onq Live Right For Your Blood Type I Was Loeosinag Weight.
    But I Have Gain A Lot Of The Weight Back Whiwchq Makes Me Mad But I Can’t Exerciwse Now As We were In A Car Accident A Car accident Last Month.
    I still follow My Diet For Those Things That We Can Get Here In Town But It’s Getting Harder Vs Easier As WeDon’t Have Many Health Food Stores An Those That We Do Have Don’t Care A Large Selection An What They Do Carry Is Over Priiced.
    So This Is My Comment For Youq how dDo We Get Things In All Local Stores An At A Cheaper Price Especially For Those Of Us That Are’t Rich an Can’t Pay Whatever But Need What We Can Eat An Drink……

    Sincerley yours,
    Michelle ‘ N Family

  • Jennifer says:

    I was diagnosed with hypothyroid 6 years ago and every time I went into the doctor we would have to up the dosage. One year ago I was diagnosed with Celiac’s. Since being on a gluten free diet I have been able to slowly wean off the thyroid medication. It seems as if the undiagnosed Celiac’s was causing my thyroid readings to be messed up leading to my diagnosis of hypothyroid. My doctor recommended that we slowly lower the thyroid medication so that we don’t send my body into shock and so that my thyroid can have the opportunity to recover and work on it’s own. Every three months we test and then lower the meds down to the next dosage with little to no side effects. I will be completely off of them in 6 months. If you have hypothyroid issues try a gluten free diet and see what happens.

  • Awesome story Jennifer!
    Thanks for sharing. Let us know when you are med free.
    Dr. O

  • @Jennifer. That is great story; however, you owe it to yourself to be tested for AutoImmune Thyroid condition (TPO ab, TBG ab). Your story is indicative of an autoimmune condition not a thyroid condition per se. Either way, a gluten free diet is a must, though it would also be good to check for antigens

  • Rene says:

    @Dr. Doug Pucci
    May I ask what would also be required (other than an gluten free diet)if one has an autoimmune thyroid?

  • simonka eva says:

    Hi! May I ask your age? My 22 year old daughter has been suffering from Hashimoto for 5 years, and now she has been diagnosed with Celiac’s. We live in Hungary. I have asked several doctors about the connection but each told me not to hope of recovering from it. What else have you done beside gluten free diet?

  • Another great article Gluten Free Society – you do an excellent job of making this complex nutritional science understandable to the general public.

    For anyone considering taking a selenium supplement to help offset the potential consequences of celiac-induced malabsorption should, be aware that organic sources of selenium (e.g. selenomethionine) are more available to the body than inorganic sources such as sodium selenite and sodium selenate.

  • mary reynolds says:

    for anyone with thyroid troubles have a look at this book http://thyroidbook.com I’m reading it at the moment, very intersting. There’s also a few good radio interviews with Dr K online that give an overview of the treatment.

    if you need to relax these mp3 download might help with relaxation and sleep http://www.pita-guided-meditation.com/

  • Marilyn says:

    How do you get old and new Drs to understand that part of their real job is to educate the patient..and 7.5 minutes per patient will never cure anyone much less provide any patient teaching! (Unless that is their aim for their practice to keep it alive..sigh.)

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