In her introduction to “The Essential Thyroid Cookbook” By Lisa Markley and Jill Grunwald, Aviva Romm, MD, author of “The Adrenal Thyroid Revolution“, explains the symptoms and challenges of hypothyroidism. As somebody who has struggled with hypothyroidism my entire life, it struck a chord with me. Knowing that the struggles I endure with weight, fatigue etc. are shared, makes it a little easier. And knowing that the authors also suffer from hypothyroidism, are a registered dietitian and successful nutrition and hormone coach, convinces me that they truly can help.
Self-proclaimed “farm huggers”, the authors also like to make sure that the foods they eat are as organic and locally sourced as possible. They explained that the organic foods are higher in antioxidants which fight free radical damage and are an important consideration for immune health. The “Our Story” section of the introduction does give a lot of explanation as to why they have chosen the types of foods and recipes for this book and the background for the research to support. It is well worth the read.
“Part One, Essential Thyroid Nutrition”, explains about the thyroid, what it does for you, causes of hypothyroidism, and the relationship of gluten with your thyroid. While many of the recipes are Palio and AIP compliant and they do understand the merits of both of those diets, the authors do not believe that either is a single solution for those with a thyroid condition. The authors even provide a couple of companion sources on their website offering additional content and a nutrition guide.
The book includes a chart of the most nutritionally significant foods (thyroid and immune-supportive) and their nutritional spectrum. Vitamins and other nutrients which are particularly significant in the thyroid healthy diet are each described individually in this chapter.
“Part 2 The Essential Thyroid Kitchen” explains the do’s and don’ts for a healthy thyroid kitchen. I have to say that the level of detail is excellent. Not only do the authors tell you what should and should not be included in your kitchen, but they explain why so you can make your own decision. And for everything that they tell you to remove from your kitchen, they give you several alternatives to replace it. There is even a handy nuts/seeds chart which gives you the nutritional benefits of each. Find a handy kitchen and tools gadget section which lists the essential cooking tools you will need.
“Part 3 Essential Thyroid Recipes” with each of the recipes they give an icon to quickly identify them as “Vegan”, “Paleo”, “Autoimmune Protocol (AIP)”, “Illumination Provocation Diet”, and “30 Minutes or Less”. Each of the recipes includes a brief description at the beginning, clear easy to follow instructions, and notes regarding substitutions for each of the various diet protocols or for optional uses. Along with the icon identification, they also include a Nutrients Guide for each which lets you know what vitamins you’ll be getting. Disappointingly most of the recipes do not include a picture.
The first set of recipes is “Beverages” including many smoothie milk and tea recipes. The next set of recipes is “Breakfast”, I like how many of the recipes are 30 minutes or less. These recipes will truly make breakfast the best meal of the day.
The next section is “Appetizers and Snacks”. There are several salsas and other dip recipes included as well as some lovely snacks/appetisers. Included is a lovely “Stuffed Cremini Mushrooms with Kale and Sausage” that I will be trying soon.
“Condiments, Sauces and Seasonings” are next with a Classic Marinara Sauce that will surely become a staple. You will find a jam recipe, a parmesan substitute and even a homemade mayo, to name a few. Since the over processed store-bought varieties aren’t going to help your condition, these are super easy alternatives.
With “Plant-Based Sides” you get vegetable side dishes. The selection is small but with plenty of options. The “Roasted Root Vegetable Medley” is the only recipe I was concerned about. It doesn’t actually say what size to chop the veggies, just how to prepare the onions. I am assuming that uniformity is the key but it doesn’t specify therefore is an unknown.
The “Soups and Stews” section offers many choices from a simple chicken broth to a lovely “Creamy Broccoli Soup”. You will find a satisfying alternative for all of your go-to soups and stews. Most are even under 30 minutes!
In the “Salads” section the recipes include some lovely combinations of flavours. They even include the vinaigrette or dressing to compliment. Some, like the “Wild Salmon & Arugula Salad With Maple Toasted Pecans And Apple Cider Vinaigrette” would make a lovely lunch or dinner.
“Main Dishes” offers some tasty dinner options. You will find wraps, a roasted chicken, meatballs, fish and more. The Grass-Fed Beef Burgers With Caramelized Onions And Shiitakes” takes less than 30 minutes. It doesn’t look like it will taste like something for a special diet.
Lots Of Lovely Indulgences
Desserts are not forgotten with the “Sweets And Treats” section. Brownies, cookies, muffins and more are all covered. Lots of lovely indulgences here.
The end of the book is “Part Four: Appendixes” which includes all of the research and supporting information. Check it out if you want to (as the authors say) “geek out with us on this nitty-gritty information”.
In all, the book is a font of knowledge. I think it is a must-read for those suffering from hypothyroidism. The changes they recommend will be significant but I believe that the results will be worth it. I will definitely try to follow this book and see how it goes.
For the recipe, I chose the Warm Apple Crisp. There are lots of apples available now and you can use it with other seasonal fruit throughout the year. Enjoy!