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Thyroid health and longevity – the checklist

A detailed thyroid checklist depicted in a visually engaging infographic, illustrating various components crucial for maintaining thyroid health

Imagine a tangible roadmap, termed a “thyroid checklist,” guiding you through thyroid maintenance. This butterfly-shaped gland in your neck, your thyroid, contains compelling health and longevity secrets. Scientists globally journey to decipher these secrets and establish thyroid function links. This involves investigating health issues and the key to a long life, highlighted by Dutch studies. In this article, we explore this journey’s layers, delving into varied research findings. We’ll navigate through intriguing paradoxes and ponder broader thyroid implications. Our pursuit? Unveiling its role in longevity and vibrant health.

Linking Thyroid Function to Noncommunicable Diseases

Considering the global health landscape, Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) emerge as a crucial group. These include heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and kidney disease. These conditions, notably significant, cause a staggering 41 million deaths worldwide annually. Additionally, they impose a substantial financial burden on society. So, preventing NCDs is a major goal for healthcare experts around the world.

Insights from The Rotterdam Study

The Rotterdam Study, a population-based, prospective cohort study, discovered something intriguing about thyroid function. At 50 years old, individuals with slightly lower thyroid function lived approximately 3.5 years longer overall. Additionally, they enjoyed 3.1 more years without heart issues compared to those with slightly higher thyroid function.

Dutch Study: Lower Thyroid Function and Longevity

Scientists at Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands wanted to investigate whether having a lower thyroid function might be a secret to a longer life. They focused on 859 siblings from families known for their impressive longevity, with an average age of 93 years.

To everyone’s surprise, even after accounting for things like illness, the study uncovered a strong link between reduced thyroid function and a longer lifespan. It’s almost as if the thyroid decides to shift its priorities, focusing more on maintaining the body and promoting a longer life. But, here’s the intriguing twist – there are other factors in play that make this relationship more complex than it seems.

This Dutch study challenges our conventional thinking because, in the normal course of things, having low thyroid function is usually seen as a risk factor for heart disease. Older individuals with low thyroid function often receive hormone supplements to contrast its effects. To fully understand how thyroid treatment affects older people, we need more research, including thorough clinical trials.

Incorporating a Thyroid Checklist into Your Health Routine

One of the most practical tools for maintaining optimal wellness is a thyroid checklist. Keeping a close eye on the health of your thyroid ensures that you’re actively participating in your overall well-being. A thyroid checklist can involve monitoring symptoms and lifestyle factors that might influence thyroid function, ensuring a nutrient-dense diet, and scheduling regular check-ups with healthcare professionals.

Regular check-ups and understanding family history are crucial for effective thyroid health monitoring. Engaging in thyroid function tests also plays a vital role. A well-structured thyroid checklist identifies and addresses issues early, avoiding possible further complications. This proactive approach aids a longer, healthier life by reducing risks of related health issues, such as cardiovascular diseases or metabolic disorders.

Top 4 supplements for Thyroid Health

1. Iodine

Iodine is an essential mineral for thyroid health, as it’s a key component of thyroid hormones. An iodine deficiency can lead to an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), goiter, and other thyroid-related issues. Many people obtain sufficient iodine from their diet through foods like fish, dairy, and iodized salt, but in some cases, a supplement may be necessary.

2. Selenium

Selenium plays a crucial role in thyroid hormone metabolism and helps protect the thyroid gland from damage caused by oxidative stress. Some studies suggest that selenium supplementation might be beneficial for individuals with certain thyroid conditions, like Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Brazil nuts, fish, and turkey are good food sources of selenium.

3. Zinc

Zinc is involved in the synthesis of thyroid hormones and may help regulate their levels. Research has shown that zinc supplementation can positively affect thyroid hormone levels, particularly in individuals who are zinc-deficient. Foods like meat, shellfish, and legumes provide zinc in the diet, but supplementation might be considered if dietary intake is insufficient.

4. Vitamin D

Vitamin D is another vital nutrient that has been linked to thyroid health in various studies. Its role in calcium absorption is well-known, but it also impacts immune function, which can be particularly relevant for autoimmune thyroid conditions such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

Thyroid Checklist conclusion

The thyroid’s influence on our health and longevity is still an intriguing mystery. While the Dutch study hints at a connection between lower thyroid function and an extended life, it’s just a part of a bigger story. To truly comprehend the significance of the thyroid in our journey for healthier, longer lives, we must commit to further research and clinical trials. These inquiries hold the potential to discover the thyroid’s secrets, offering new pathways to improve our overall well-being. As we continue our quest for a longer and healthier life, the thyroid plays a key role, leading us to new possibilities and knowledge.


  1. “Association of Thyroid Function With Life Expectancy With and Without Cardiovascular Disease” study for PubMed Central [Link]
  2. “Is lower thyroid functions activity linked to longevity” article for Reuters


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