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Can a deficiency in omega-3 fatty acids cause an enlarged goitre?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 1980
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hi can a deficiency in omega-3 fatty acids cause an enlarged goitre? ( a benign nodule in the thyroid). how common is omega-3 deficiency in north america? i live in canada. what about iodine deficiency?
Posted Thu, 21 Mar 2013 in Thyroid Problem and Hormonal Problems
 
 
Answered by Dr. Rahul Tawde 29 hours later
Dear XXXXXXX,
Thanks for writing in. Omega 3 fatty acids have no direct relationship with thyroid dysfunction and goiter. Although omega 3 fatty acids are thought to be required for hormone biosynthesis there aren't any studies linking hypothyroidism with omega 3 FA deficiency. Similarly they have also been shown to reduce inflammation in Hashimoto s thyroiditis again good quality studies are not there. Im not very sure of any studies looking into the prevalence of omega 3 FA deficiency in north XXXXXXX It boils down to kind of food and oil you are consuming. Omega 3 FA can't be produced in body and hence dependent on diet. As for iodine deficiency is concerned the answer is pretty simple - there is no iodine deficiency in US or Canada.
Hope this helps
Shivaprasad
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Can a deficiency in omega-3 fatty acids cause an enlarged goitre? 1 hour later
i have had an enlarged goitre for the past 6 years and last year i went through symptoms of hashimoto's thyroiditis but unfortunately all my blood tests turned normal in my family doctor's office (had 3 in that 4 months he was checking my thyroid once a month). by the time i saw an endocrinologist it was too late for chemical lab tests and he said that it might balance out. my family doctor offered to refer me to an endocrinologist after my first test for thyroid turned normal but unfortuantely i refused and said "i won't see an specialist untill my blood proves that there's something wrong with my thyroid" i made a big mistake. anyways when i saw an endocrinologist it was too late for chemical lab tests and he said it might balance out and prescribed no medication. he was right my symptoms started going away shortly after that appointment but i developed other medical problems after that such as edema legs, severe menstural cramps, GERD and etc. i just found out that i might be low in omega-3/6641" >omega 3 fatty acids. i eat fish once in a blue moon and usually i eat it fried which apparently reduces the omega 3 in it i just found out and i don't take omega-3 supplements. so i'm going to ask my family doctor to check my omega 3 levels but do you think that my health conditions might have been caused by a deficiency in omega 3? what about selenium deficiency? do you think i might be low in selenium? i'm actually from iran and the air in iran is very polluted and i know air pollution causes selenium deficiency. i've been living in canada for 17 years. moved here when i was 13 but i've had a low metabolism and respiratory issues since birth. when i was 2 a pediatrician told my mom that i have weak lungs cause he heard too many wheezings when he listened my lungs but didn't say what could be causing it and how to get rid of it. can stress be a cause of my enlarged goitre and hypothyroidism?
thanks bye
 
 
Answered by Dr. Rahul Tawde 6 hours later
Neither selenium deficiency nor stress could cause hypothyroidism on their own. So is the case with omega 3 fatty acids. They can contribute to other major players like iodine deficiency and autoimmunity. I would put it this way- if 100 people have omega 3 FA deficiency only a few would have hypothyroidism not everyone. Its not been convincingly proven that any of tjese 3 factors could cause hypothyroidism. Believee in evidence based medicine. Whats the big deal in taking supplemental omega 3 FA and selenium. Please try them. If they work for you I would be delighted. I wish they work for you. Dont worry too much.
Best wishes
Shivaprasad
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Can a deficiency in omega-3 fatty acids cause an enlarged goitre? 4 hours later
what about iron deficiency? do you think i might deficient in it? when i take mint contatining products, like mint freshners or mint tea i feel much better. mint has iron in it.
i just started taking omega-3 supplements 3 days ago. i take one a day but i might increase my dose. on it's container says that we can take upto 3 a day or as adviced by a healthcare professional. i'll ask my family doctor whether or not having my omega-3 levels tested would be apporpriate for me. should i also ask him to check my iron levels? thanks. can iron deficiency cause such hypothyroidism? thanks bye
 
 
Answered by Dr. Rahul Tawde 11 hours later
Thats good. Continue omega 3 fatty acids for atleast 3 - 6 months if not longer. Iron deficiency wont cause hypothyroidism.
Bye
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