The free-flowing days of summer are now behind us, as we head into fall and a return to busy school schedules and a flurry of activities. Suddenly, it may seem more challenging to fit in the healing activities that you enjoyed over the summertime, whether it was a relaxing vacation, taking time for a restorative yoga class, or more free time to experiment with new thyroid-healing recipes.
I’m right there with you as I send my little guy off to preschool in a new hometown and state, in the midst of working and creating new routines in our new home. Fortunately, I have several great resources that I turn to time and time again when life gets busy, and I need a little help getting a nourishing meal on the table, or supporting my adrenals when they’re feeling a little stressed.
Read on to discover my favorite tools for keeping my thyroid calm, even when life isn’t!
Diet and Meal Prep
Getting a thyroid-friendly meal on the table can be challenging when life gets busy and takeout is on your way home…here are some great options for meals, snacks and keeping your pantry stocked with nourishing foods.
Captain Soup: I was so excited to learn about this meal delivery service that one of my readers created! Captain Soup offers “heat and eat” nutrient-dense food — with grass fed meats, organic fruits and veggies, and nourishing bone broth, there’s an abundance of thyroid healing nutrients in each meal. I love easy-to-digest, nutrient-dense soups any time of year, but with cooler days ahead it’s the perfect time to add them to your meal plan. Save $10 off your purchase with code DRWENTZ.
Paleovalley: These snacks are created with integrity, free from problematic ingredients, and teeming with ingredients that promote vibrant health. They have no additives, are naturally good for you, and great for when you’re on the go! My personal favorites include their Turkey Sticks and Beef Sticks.
Paleo on the Go: These farm fresh, fully prepared, frozen Paleo and autoimmune protocol meals are hand-crafted by their executive chef and delivered directly to your doorstep, saving you time and offering a healthy alternative to cooking when time is in short supply.
If you are in California or the West Coast, I also recommend Methodology: a meal service that brings fully prepared food to your door. Their meals are created with a focus on increasing fruit, vegetable, and fiber intake, and decreasing processed foods. Not only are their meals gluten free and refined sugar free (and they can accommodate for multiple allergies and diets), they are also aesthetically pleasing and absolutely delicious. Currently, Methodology delivers to Portland, Seattle, the San Francisco Bay Area, and parts of Southern California. Be sure to use my discount code IZABELLACCBF to get a 20% discount on your first order.
Thrive Market: This membership community uses the power of direct buying to deliver the world’s best healthy food and natural products at wholesale prices. They stock a wide variety of products including vegan, dairy free, vegetarian, organic, Paleo, gluten free, etc., making it easy to do your shopping from the comfort of your home.
Butcher Box: Get 100% grass fed beef, free range organic chicken, and heritage breed pork delivered to your door for less than $6.00 per meal! (Use my code THYROID to get $10 off your order!)
Flavor Chef: This company creates certified humane and verified non-GMO bone broth (made with organic chicken and grass-fed beef), and they even have AIP options — great for those with Hashimoto’s. You can save 10% off your order of bone broth by entering the code THYROID10 at checkout!
When possible, I also recommend creating bone broth from scratch — it’s one of the easiest recipes to make, and requires only a few simple ingredients. You can make a large batch at one time and store it in glass jars in the refrigerator (up to 5 days) or freezer (up to a year), to be warmed as needed.
Bone Broth Recipe
- 4-5 organic chicken legs
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 stalks celery
- 1 onion
- 6 to 8 large carrots
- Purified water
- Sea salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste (if tolerated)
- Place the chicken, vinegar, and vegetables in a slow cooker.
- Fill with water to 1 inch below the top of the slow cooker, cover, and cook on high for 8 to 12 hours.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Strain, pour into jars, and refrigerate (or freeze).
Vitamix: Vitamix blenders are built to last and come with full warranties—great for blending “Root Cause Smoothies,” heartier recipes, chunky salsas, thick vegetable soups, and more! Add your favorite Rootcology protein powder to create a quick, but still nourishing and energizing, breakfast smoothie for those mornings when you’re on the go!
Adrenal Support and Stress Relief
The chronic stress of keeping up with a busy schedule can take a toll on our adrenals and lead to symptoms ranging from fatigue, to anxiety and digestive upset. When life feels a little out of control it can be difficult to find time for self-care, but that’s also when we need it most! Even just taking a few minutes each day to be present and relax can make a big difference in our ability to cope with stressors.
Five Minute Journal: I love this journal — it helps you cultivate gratitude and banish negativity from your life, and only takes five minutes to fill out each day, so it’s an easy self-care tool to fit into a busy schedule.
Meditation apps: Meditation is a great way to de-stress, but it can seem daunting to fit into your schedule, especially if you are new to it. Calm is a meditation and mindfulness app that has hundreds of meditations (from guided to silent), sleep-promoting (or “bedtime”) stories, and masterclasses on all things mindfulness. Follow along a guided meditation to start your day, or fall asleep to a soothing bedtime story! A new meditation app that one of my teammates has been raving about, is called Breethe. Breethe offers traditional types of guided meditation, along with a few non-traditional options, such as “My Family Is Making Me Nuts”, to incorporate a little humor into your mindfulness routine. 😉 They also offer some unique science-backed techniques, including hypnotherapy, sound therapy and tapping.
Adrenal Support: I developed Rootcology Adrenal Support to help you support the adrenals during times of stress. This is a blend of the ABC’s in one formula: adrenal adaptogens, B vitamins, and vitamin C. This supplement is designed to promote healthy cortisol levels, hypothalamic and pituitary function (HPTA axis), and catecholamine production (dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine).
Sleep and Energy
Getting restful sleep is crucial for adrenal and thyroid health, but that can sometimes be easier said than done. Being mindful of my morning and bedtime routines has made a big difference in my ability to wake up feeling rested each day. Here are some of the products I use to ensure I’m getting quality sleep.
TrueDark: Keeping the body in tune with natural cycles of sunlight throughout the day, and darkness in the evening, will help regulate sleep hormones and promote better nighttime rest. Using devices such as blue light blocking glasses at night can help stop your screen habits from sabotaging your sleep. They also help reduce digital eye strain — great for busy mamas and kiddos alike!
Caffeine intake can certainly impact sleep, especially for those who are particularly sensitive to its stimulating effects. I used to consider myself to be a light sleeper… until I dropped my caffeine intake. I was so surprised when things no longer woke me up at night! Here are a couple of my favorite alternatives for a caffeine-free morning routine:
MUD/WTR: If you’re considering giving up coffee, or looking for a new morning ritual that promotes energy and focus, I highly recommend trying “Mud Water.” It contains adaptogenic and brain-boosting mushrooms with a blend of black tea, that support the body’s ability to deal with stressors while promoting natural energy.
Rasa Coffee Alternative: These yummy adaptogenic blends are packed with herbs that provide lasting energy, while nourishing your adrenals. They have a variety of options, including coffee blends, caffeine-free blends, and even an AIP-Friendly version! (Use code IZABELLAWENTZPHARMD to get 15% off.)
If you do have a sleepless night, or you are not ready to give up that caffeine habit yet, consider switching to a high-quality and toxin-free coffee, for a more thyroid-friendly way to support your energy. My favorite go-to when I need a boost is Bulletproof — their coffee is certified mold and toxin free, so it’s safe for your thyroid when you need a jumpstart on a busy morning. I’ve also been testing Dave Asprey’s new patent-pending coffee formula called Danger. While regular coffee can deplete nutrients and dehydrate us, Danger is designed to remineralize your body with over 50 trace minerals, nutrients, and electrolytes (it’s also mold free)!
Supporting our liver is one of the most important things we can do for thyroid health, but taking time for a lengthy cleanse might not feel feasible when you’re in the middle of your busy season. I love to use a castor oil pack for a quick and easy way to support my liver, and I make sure to use clean and safe personal care products to reduce my toxic load each day.
Queen of the Thrones: Caster oil packs can help improve sleep, digestion, hormone balance, and help the liver to clear out toxins. I’ve known about them for years, but only started doing them regularly after finding out about Queen of the Thrones. Their kit makes it super easy and, in my opinion, much more effective!
Pretty Frank Deodorant: If you’re busy, you’re (hopefully) sweating. This clean deodorant is my new favorite. Made with skin-soothing oils that help to calm redness and discomfort, Pretty Frank’s deodorants keep body odor in check — without the use of aluminum and other toxic ingredients found in conventional deodorizing products.
I spend a lot of time researching and testing healthier personal care products, and good deodorants can be tough to find. My passion for deodorants goes all the way back to my undergraduate studies, when I tried every deodorant on the market, as I was trying to find an effective replacement for one that was discontinued. After pharmacy school, I dabbled in cosmetic chemistry and created a special deodorant formulation in my kitchen, and my husband even created a business plan as part of his Master’s program for marketing the deodorant. However, after learning about the potential issues with aluminum and other toxins in traditional deodorant/antiperspirants, I gave up on my dream of making people’s armpits smell like juniper berries and roses. That is until recently, when someone told me about a new clean and effective deodorant. 😉 I was so inspired by Pretty Frank that I wrote a little love letter!
When I lived in Boulder, CO, I did not need to wear deodorant. It wasn’t particularly hot or humid there, and it was fabulously crunchy and no one seemed to care. 🙂 I got in the habit of wearing athleisure on the daily, as this was super common (the first year we got there, I felt way over-dressed in a dress at a New Year’s Eve party, where everyone else wore yoga pants and sweats).
In 2020 our family decided to move to Los Angeles, CA full time. If you’ve never been to LA, the rumors are true. People are fabulously fashionable, take great lengths to cater to their appearance, and it’s very warm year round, even in January!
I knew I had to update my look and routine.
I invested in some floral yoga pants, and thought that should cut it.
I took a few months off and spent most days at the playground with my son, hoping to meet some friends. But I hardly made any friends!
Was it the pandemic, or was it my smell that was keeping people away?
I couldn’t be too sure, so I started experimenting with different natural deodorants.
Many of them smelled like sweat mixed with deodorant after a few hours. 🙁
I then came across Pretty Frank.
Pretty Frank got me through a whole busy Saturday of momming in sunny Los Angeles in my usual uniform of tank top + athletic zip-up, while at toddler soccer practice and the playground.
I was also shocked that my armpits were still happy when we decided to get a home in Austin, TX, and spent the month of June in record 100 degree heat. I thought to myself, no way could this work in Texas. But it does (that said, I also only wore tank tops, not my athletic zip up).
If you are looking for a way to make your armpits smell nice, without the toxins, check it out. 🙂
(My readers can save 10% off their Pretty Frank order using this link, or code THYROIDLIFESTYLE at checkout.)
With fall and school come the inevitable rounds of illness… so it’s important to keep our immune systems boosted with a few key supplements, in addition to a nourishing diet of course.
Here are a few that I keep in my supplement cabinet:
- Vitamin C – an important antioxidant that helps support the adrenals, mitochondria, collagen production, and the eradication of Epstein-Barr virus infections, along with many other potential viruses.* I recommend doses of 500 to 3,000 mg per day, as tolerated.
- Vitamin D – By enhancing the pathogen-fighting effects of monocytes and macrophages — white blood cells that are important parts of immune defense — and decreasing inflammation, vitamin D can help reduce the likelihood of contracting viruses, such as the seasonal flu.* I generally recommend a dose of 2000 to 5000 IU and spending time in the sunshine to get Vitamin D, if you have Hashimoto’s.
- Zinc – A deficiency in this essential mineral is associated with increased susceptibility to infections, as well as reduced detoxification of bacterial toxins; while optimized zinc levels can help fight infections by balancing the immune system’s response.* I usually recommend doses of no more than 30 mg per day, unless you’re working with a practitioner who advises higher doses.
- Quercetin – This antioxidant flavonoid has antiviral properties, and plays an important role in combating free radicals, as well as reducing inflammation, allergy symptoms, and blood pressure.* A dose of 250 mg, 2-4 times per day, is recommended.
I had the pleasure of collaborating with Pure Encapsulations on my Instagram channel, to talk about immune support this summer. You can check out those simple tips to support your immune system here.
I hope you try some of these resources and find them helpful, as we jump into this busy fall season while taking care of our thyroid health.
For more of my favorite items and resources that I use to make it easier to care for my thyroid health, take a look at the Resources page of my website. I am constantly updating it with all of the new goodies that I come across!
Here’s to a healthy fall season!