Has anyone with Hashimotos benefited from a Vegan diet?


After struggling with this disease, a couple of my friends (who do not have any chronic diseases btw) are trying to get me to switch to a vegan diet.

I have cravings for all the wrong foods all the time and eat them along with healthy things. Cant imagine not eating meat/ chocolate etc!

Could a vegan diet be a cure???



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22 Replies

  • I am a veggie, and have been for years but it has made no difference to my thyroid condition (well not that I can see anyway). I have recently gone " Wheat Free" which has made a big difference. My stomach has reduced and I seem to have more energy and if it wasn;t for the fact that my thyroid meds have been messed up recently I think I would be loosing weight.

    A craving for chocolate could indicate low B12 - have you had this tested? Going vegan is a huge step and not one to be taken lightly, you really need a lot of commitment to be a vegan, and thats coming from a veggie.lol.

    Moggie x

  • I have been a vegetarian for 47 years and have hashis!. I am not sure that becoming vegan would help you. Nevertheless you should be eating a healthy diet and much research indicates that a gluten free diet does help hashi sufferers. I am struggling with this but am trying. I also use supplements vis: Selinium, B12 and a Multi Vitamin.

    Hope this helps.....

  • There are ethical reasons for being vegan, and we should probably be eating more fruit and vegetables than we do.

    However, I think meat is such a highly concentrated source of nutrition that it is not always the best idea to cut it out. It can be hard to find enough good quality protein on a vegan diet, and that's counterproductive if you're struggling with health problems.

    Cutting out gluten and reducing sugar have helped me.

    I have often heard that chocolate craving is a sign of magnesium deficiency (rather than B12).

  • When I became vegetarian, my Hashi's started to accelerate down-hill rapidly. I think it was the worse thing I ever did for my health - except perhaps starting to drink soya milk because a dietician told me it was a health food!

    Hypos need more protein than the average and it is hard to get enough decent protein when you don't eat meat. If you don't eat eggs or cheese either, it would be very, very difficult. I, personally, wouldn't recommend it.

    Don't forget you are genetically programmed to eat meat. There are certain amino acids in meat that the body needs. By all means eat more fruit and veg but don't forget that a lot of them are goitrogenic and may do you more harm than good.

    Hugs, Grey

  • Today's article by Chris Kresser might offer good reasons not to go vegan :

    Red Meat: It Does a Body Good!

    Beef. It’s what’s for (a healthy) dinner.


  • I have had hashimoto for 8 years that I know and have gained 149 pounds. I was a vegetarian my Whole life, docs put me on 800 calorie diets and even phentermine and the weight just kept going up. Finally decided to go vegan and I've lost 58 pounds so far, 38 since January 1st. I just found out about gluten and started gluten free with the vegan today. My meat eating friend Went gluten free and hasn't lost a pound. I Went vegan for the animals and am reaping the bemefits, I also lift way heavier at the Gym and my recovery time is like nothing...no pain just gain. Plus my energy is through the roof. Veganism Saved my life and the weight is coming off pretty quick and I am not young. Also my hair and nail grow faster, my skin has cleared up, and I get compliments on how bright my eyes are now...never happened before.

  • Hi Teddiebear, are you also gluten free and avoid Thyroid Goitrogens ? I don't eat meat or eggs, and have gone gluten free, and the blood type diet, which limits dairy to only goat and sheep milk, and the thyroid banned foods include beans, so I am really struggling with my diet. Feel free to throw some food ideas my way if you like ? :)

  • Veganism suits some people (like teddiebear1209) and doesn't suit others. It is not a weight loss diet unless you are trying to lose weight and tailor your diet accordingly. When I was young and healthy I did well as a vegan. It might suit you but it isn't a 'cure' for anything and it's kind of a stressful way to eat unless you make all your own food.

    The good news is you can still have chocolate. :-)

  • Update...I quit gluten free and am strictly vegan. Down 106 pounds , eat way more calories, still lifting heavier, medicine has been cut in half, 3 nodules disappeared and all I am is vegan. My meat eating friend still gains. My doctor said my body is healing itself with my diet

  • Any updates?? I've also had a significant weight gain due to Hashimoto's and have taken the plunge to go vegan today!

  • I'm been vegan for over 6 months now and gluten free for nearly 2 years as well. Since going vegan TPO and TG antibodies have both reduced to their lowest level. Both below 55. I'm no longer taking any medication. TSH is still high (just over 5) and I have some symptoms but they are manageable and I've even manage to lose some weight. Hoping with more time TSH and antibodies will continue to come down.

    Completing eliminating all animal protein seems to be the reason they vegan diet has help. Vegetarian diet isn't the same as a vegan diet. Dairy/Milk is basically liquid animal protein.

  • Hi! I see this is an old thread, but thought I'd chime in. I think its worth a try! Stsrt slow, cut meat intake to 3 days a week, then down to 1 meal per day and so on. I indulge in a square of dark chocolate, less sugar but so good! I was diagnosed 6 months ago with Hashimotos and I've found a change in my diet to be successful in managing my symptoms (energy level, libido, weight-loss, acne, swelling and sore joints all significantly helped!). I started a gluten free, dairy free, no processed foods, low sugar, vegitarian (I still eat chicken, but that's the only meat- no fish) eating plan. I switched to almond milk, I eat 2 big salads a day, plenty of nuts, and fruits when I crave something sweet. It has changed my life! Sure I fall off the wagon and binge on donuts now and then, but the bloat comes back with the tiredness and I'm reminded why I changed my habits. I've lost 46lbs, Without changing my daily exercise habits. At 29 I feel like I should have at 19! I'd been sick for so long I felt trapped in my own body. Hope this helps someone- Hashi sisters unite!

  • Wow hambonesmom - very inspiring post. I have been so confused on whether to go vegan or not. I have read where going vegan made Hashimoto's worse. Right now I do no milk, mainly egg whites, chicken, turkey and some fish, very little cheese (and thats mainly gluten free fresh mozzarella), filtered waters, lots of green tea, fruits, could do better on the veggies, lots of unsalted nuts and dark chocolate or chocolate for sweet tooth fixes. Want to become a bit more serious about a diet but still am not sure the best option. Doctors just say to find one that helps me drop weight. Gee - that helps (sarcasm). Do you track your food? calories? carbs? sugar? fat? I am in a bit older than you (early 40's) so not sure if age is a factor. Looking to drop 4 dress sizes which is close to the amount you have lost so far. Congrats on your success - you have made me remain interested in learning more.

  • I'm curious. Why don't you eat egg yolks? They are the best part of the egg!

    I'm also baffled by the "gluten-free mozzarella". How could any kind of cheese have gluten in it?

  • I am weaning myself off of eggs so egg whites get me closer to going egg free and even then, I use a limited amount each week. As for gluten free cheese, check out this link:


    I only buy this brand and it has been a pleasure to use on pizzas, salads, etc.

  • Again, I know this is an old thread, but new people will still be reading it.

    A vegan (whole food plant based, not junk food based) diet is nothing like a vegetarian diet, so I don't think the vegetarians' comments are relevant to this thread. Milk products are as bad, if not worse than meat for the human body (nutrition facts.org for a lorry-load of worldwide studies on the fact).

    I had Hashimoto's diagnosed 16 years ago after having my first son, and in January this year I was in such a state I just started to read everything on diet and disease. I have always thought that what we eat played an important part in our health, and always made 'healthy' home cooked meals, thinking I was not part of the SAD (although I'm English), clan. What I have learned after hundreds of hours of reading doctors reports and studies has blown my mind, and I am now 100% vegan, eating whole plant based foods. And I feel amazing, after 3 rough detox days, I feel better than I can ever in my life remember feeling. I have lost 12kgs (down to UK size 10 / US 6!!), no longer have joint and bone pain, can think clearly (not have to park my car to really think how to get home from the supermarket), am not spending most mornings asleep on the sofa because my stomach is so painful from what I had for breakfast, not feeling apathy for my life (and I have such a charmed life, I really do, but had no interest in it continuing, but too apathetic to do anything about it). I no longer have constant acne on my chin - no spots at all, and the hideously embarrassing, thick yellow psoriasis crust that formed on my scalp within hours of washing it, that itched and burned constantly, is gone. I no longer have itchy skin where I have burned it from thinking the shower water is cold, so having it on the highest setting. And I no longer need to constantly wear Japanese (extra warm) thermal tops and leggings, with 3 layers on my top all the time. And all this while my doctor said my levels were fine.

    So find out about milk, find out about meat, forget the brainwashing that they are good for you. Everything you need can be got from where those animals get their nutrients (Imagine explaining to an alien how we eat other species and drink their bodily secretions that are meant for their babies .... if you think about what we do it is so absurd and it's making the world so, so ill, in every way). Try vegan, you have nothing to lose, and maybe so much to gain, I feel so enlightened and ethically and morally lighter.

    And I honestly have never eaten such varied and delicious food. A bit of an initial outlay on cookbooks and ingredients, blender etc. but I am now saving £300 per month, every month, on groceries compared to last year (English family of 4 living in Czech), my husband agrees, teenage sons are not protesting too much...😀. But make it delicious, go on Pinterest, buy some books - not just lettuce and lentils...

    ....However, one other thing to consider.... I stopped eating processed food, so also stopped eating bread, and chose protein pastas over wheat pasta. Six weeks ago, I got hooked on making bread and sourdough, and have been happily scoffing wheat again, without the additives. But I have now started to have brain fog, stomach problems with foods I was thriving on, and fatigue. So last week after reading about gluten (can find nothing concrete but seems to make a lot of auto immune conditions worse, anecdotally), I cut it out (started making some nice GF loaves) and I am starting to feel better, and stomach problems with other foods have gone again. I feel brighter and energy is returning.

    Please try it 🙂

  • Hi ,great to hear about your success with vegan and gluten free diet .I have hashimotos about 8 years and been gluten and dairy free for few years noe.Defo feeling better but still have many strange things going on healthwice .I was thinking trying Paleo or vegan now .

    By the way I am Czech living in the UK with my English hubby and 2 kids.But we r contemplating moving to Czech.

    I know its totaly out of the subject but Can I ask how u finding living in Czech?

    Old the best with your health and thanks for the motivation trying out vegan.

  • Hi Lenks,

    We are similar but opposite, then! Loving Czech, the countryside is beautiful but I came from Essex / Suffolk countryside originally, so I am finding the bustle, the sense of 'life' and ethnic diversity in Prague is what thrills me most here. Hope you have loved England too 😀 - if you move near me, we should have coffee!

    I tried Paleo when I started trying to right things myself. Paleo definitely helped because you are meant to be eating large amounts of plants, particularly veg (the real 'healers'), and non-processed, naturally reared organic meats which would not have the harmful antibiotics, toxins etc that ordinary supermarket meats contain. And the lack of dairy which I know you have already cut, was a big bonus with Paleo - my disgusting scalp psoriasis completely went when I removed dairy from my diet.

    But I found it wasn't enough, and I kept on reading and reading (nutritionfacts.org has become my go-to for information about food studies), and decided whole plant foods was the way to go. The 'cleaner' meat is still detrimental and fish is so contaminated with toxins from pollution and the whole grains & pulses that Paleo largely excludes have such benefits. I then started to acknowledge the animal rights issues with meat consumption and it all made sense, I now feel mentally 'lighter' knowing I no longer buy into the animals sad lives. But that's just me.

    I think reading and reading about the effects of foods on your gut (which seems to be the route cause of the symptoms with just about all autoimmune diseases), and starting to feed it what it needs to function fully, and removing the things that are progressing the damage is the answer to a lot of our AI thyroid issues, in particular, the problem with T4 not converting to T3. If we can halt damage to our guts and start to repair them with food, our bodies should 'work' properly (I don't know that AI thyroid can be reversed as we have those antibodies, but I think the symptoms can go into remission and we can feel 'normal' and on full-form again). I follow several Paleo doctors' websites and a few Plant-Based ones as I think the information on both is similar, apart from the meat bit, and both have compelling arguments so you have to decide for yourself. I think both would help everybody, but I have gone the plant-based route as I think it goes further than Paleo. I only 'take notice' of actual doctors' information based on recent unbiased studies (rather than those that cite studies from the 1970's that have since been disproved - the recent 'unrefined coconut oil is as bad as animal fats' comes to mind...). Although I also find it interesting that when you read the 'About' section of a lot of plant-based food bloggers, they seem to have arrived at plant-based eating through health issues that doctors have failed to help them with. They feel the plants hold the key and their blogs were borne from a passion to share the message. I know this is just anecdotal, but it's thought-provoking.

    Did you notice a big difference with the removal of gluten, what were the benefits? I cut bread originally because it was so processed, not whole-plant based, but reintroduced it when I started making my own, but it coincided with some symptoms returning (tiredness, apathy, stomach problems with more and more foods again). The worst thing was my hair was falling out again - I was pulling big handfuls off my arms every time I washed it, taking it from the shower tray and raking another handful out of the sink everytime I dried it. I expected to be bald within 6 months at the rate it was coming out again. I read about gluten, although most info seems to be anecdotal, and decided I had to try illiminating it, although expected to have to wait about 3 months to see if it made any difference. I cut it out on June 6 and a week later, my stomach was back to being able to eat everything, apathy and lethargy were decreasing, and on July 6, just a month later, I washed my hair as I do every 2 days, and dried it and would estimate an 80% reduction in hair stuck to my arms, in the shower and sink. I have washed it a second time now and the same thing... I am keeping my fingers crossed, but am quietly excited 😀.

    Good luck with whichever you try, and Prague seems to be opening new, whole-plant based restaurants every week, it is phenomenal - there must be something in it 😄

  • TorixBear, I have been on Vegan diet for One week. I can't believe how much better I am feeling, I am super excited!Hashimoto's has taken my life away and now I feel like I'm getting an inch back.

  • Fantastic, I am really excited for you! I hope you start to see your different ailments, even niggles you had that may not have necessarily been linked to the Hashimotos, drop away as the days go by. Don't forget you may get a 'withdrawal' period, which may drag you down and take the wind from your sails a bit. I had about 3 -4 days of just feeling really unwell, about a week and a half to two weeks in. This threw me as I had been so 'full of beans' (alive-feeling) to start with. I questioned what I was doing, but after looking in to it, found it was normal, and most new vegans, or anyone undertaking a huge dietary clean-up, face this too. And then the good feeling comes back :) And it grows, and you start to feel mentally-lighter, and look at the world differently, hard to explain without sounding weird, but I am sure you will see what I mean.

    I hope you are getting to try lots of exciting new food combinations, and that your family and friends are supportive. And spread the word - my mum and husband, although they have not gone vegan, have drastically reduced their meat and dairy intake, having read about what they do to your body. They have both lost lots of excess weight, my mum no longer lays awake with leg pain at night - it's gone, and she says she is not struggling to remember things as she was. And both have so much more energy. My husband no longer goes to bed at 8 because he is so tired, or falls asleep if he sits down for 5 minutes (he now eats vegan 80% of the time, but has lapses when away).

    Oh, and when you are eating out, the free Happy Cow app is excellent for finding vegan restaurants (or ones that serve vegan options), wherever you are in the world :)

    Good luck and best wishes for getting your health back!

  • Thanks for advice and help in preparing what I may experience. I am hopeful to be on the road to recovery! I have been dairy and gluten free for sometime. So it really hasn't been as hard as I expected.

  • Hey guys, glad to see this thread is still active. I always flip between Autoimmune Paleo (built for de-inflammation) and vegan. I was wondering what makes up your diet aside from veggies. I don't ask this in the typical uninformed way of a person criticizing a vegan diet, but from the concern that nuts, grains, and beans can be inflammatory to the gut in large amounts. Do you rely heavily on these foods? Do they bother you at all? Thank you!

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