What is Goitre?
Goitre is a common thyroid related disease which is characterized by a peculiarly enlarged thyroid gland that in turn leads to swelling of the neck, or larynx to be specific. It has been observed that women are more prone to develop thyroid diseases as compared to men. There is a common confusion in relation to the name of this disease. In British English, it is spelt as Goitre and in American English, it is spelt as Goiter. Anyway, let’s not loiter on the spelling of Goitre and move on.
There are two types of Goitre that is, Diffuse Small Goitre and Nodular Goitre. In Diffuse Small Goitre, the whole thyroid gland swells up smoothly whereas in Nodular Goitre only particular parts of the gland swell up. The cause behind the disease determines the method of treatment. Experts often recommend hormone therapy for healing this therapy may have side effects like muscle cramps, excessive sweating, headache, diarrhea, irregular heart beat and chest pain. So, the patient may consider slow paced but safe and natural home remedies for Goitre treatment. In extreme cases, surgery may also be needed.
Causes of Goitre
Basically, Goitre is caused by problems in the thyroid gland of the body. It could be the result of Hypothyroidism, Hyperthyroidism, Thyroid Cyst, Nodular growth on the thyroid gland, or even thyroid cancer. Hypothyroidism is caused by Hashimoto’s thyroiditis which results in an under active thyroid gland leads to an. As for Hyperthyroidism, it is caused by Grave’s Disease and is characterized by an over active functioning of the thyroid gland which produces excessive amounts of thyroid hormones. Besides, it may be caused by insufficient or excessive iodine consumption, hereditary factors, radiation, smoking, and certain drugs such as lithium and phenylbutazone. Consuming too much Goitrogenic foods like peanuts, tofu, spinach, soybean etc may suppress the functioning of the thyroid gland and lead to Goitre.
Symptoms of Goitre
The most common symptom of Goitre is a swelling on the neck (at its base). This swelling could be slight or considerable. This swelling may cause a feeling of tightness in the throat. This may further lead to uneasiness in swallowing and breathing. Other symptoms include lack of concentration, depression, coughing, and irritability. Most Goitres are painless, unless there is any inflammation.
Natural Home Remedies for Goitre
• Regularly drinking barley water is one of the easiest natural home remedies for Goitre.
• Regularly placing warm dandelion leaves on the swollen neck is a good home remedy to reduce the swelling.
• Having 30 ml Kachnar decoction twice a day preferably in the morning on an empty stomach is regarded as one of the most successful home remedies for Goitre treatment in India.
• Applying a paste of watercress on the neck is an effective natural cure for the disease.
• Another natural remedy for the disease would be to have cool showers every morning and evening to improve thyroid function of the body.
• Make a paste of sorrel leaves and olive oil by mashing them and apply it in on the affected area. This is one of the most effective natural home remedies for Goitre.
• Flaxseed grounded in water and then heated slightly, when applied on the swollen parts of the neck and bandaged with leaves of flax is one of the toughest but at the same time, effective home remdies for Goitre.
• Taking one teaspoon of juice extracted from swamp cabbage leaves with tea almonds on a daily basis naturally heals the disease.
• Oats and bananas taken on a daily basis are sure to provide relief.
• Water Nut, Lotus Reed and pineapple are beneficial in the prevention as well as treatment of the disease.
Diet for Goitre
One of the main causes of having Goitre is having a diet poor in iodine. So the most important step to avoid and cure Goitre is to include iodine-rich foods in the diet. Lettuce, turnips, carrots, garlic, strawberries, onions, guavas, whole rice, tomatoes and citrus fruits can serve this purpose. Fruit juices like that of pineapples, oranges, apples and grapes are highly beneficial. The patient should reduce the consumption of rice, or at least, the old variety of rice should be preferred over the new one.
Alcoholic beverages, cold drinks, coffee, tea, flesh foods, fried foods, condiments and products prepared from white flour should be avoided as far as possible. The patient should avoid chlorinated water, fluoridated water and toothpastes containing fluoride, chloride or iodine as fluoride and chlorine have chemical properties similar to that of iodine. Apart from healthy and balanced diet food with adequate amount of iodine, slow exercises such as neck stretches and daily walks are also helpful in curing the disease naturally.