What is hypothyroidism?
Thyroid dysfunction was recognized over 100 years back. A deficiency of thyroid hormone (hypothyroidism) is much more common than an extra condition (hyperthyroidism). Thyroid disorders affect about 20 million people in the U.S. Many men and women do not even know they may have a thyroid problem because the diagnosis is often overlooked. Thyroid disorders are thought to be on the increase, likely associated with widespread nutrient deficiencies, exposure to environmental toxins, lousy bowel health, and the increasing incidence of autoimmunity. Women are also more prone to develop thyroid disorders than men.
The standard lab tests for diagnosing thyroid dysfunction are:
Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH)
Free T4; the pre-hormone made from the thyroid
Free T3; the active hormone that is converted from T4 from the thyroid gland and in peripheral tissues
Thyroid binding globulin; the transport protein which carries thyroid hormone in the bloodstream
Thyroid antibodies; are proteins that are markers for autoimmune inflammation of the thyroid gland called thyroiditis. This is a condition that may result in hypothyroidism.
Non-conventional techniques for diagnosing hypothyroidism include:
Basal Body Temperature: The traditional method by Dr. Broda Barnes advises taking the temperatures first thing in the morning. The more recent method advises taking the temperature at intervals during the day. Body temperature as a way of diagnosing under the action of the thyroid is contentious. It needs to be utilized in the context of patient history, physical examination, and lab testing.
Testing combined with history and physical examination is necessary to make a diagnosis.
There are lots of issues regarding the treatment of functional hypothyroidism accomplished by thyroid integrative practitioners.
Factors that may result in Functional Hypothyroidism contain:
Metabolic Abnormalities can lead to poor conversion of T4 to T3.
Hormonal deficiencies can inhibit the conversion of T4 to T3.Nutritional Deficiencies
Chronic diseases involving other organs.
Excessive ingestion of certain foods can inhibit thyroid hormone production; higher protein diets, cauliflower, soy products, and excess iodine ingestion
Medications can inhibit thyroid production, decrease the conversion of T3 to T4 and generate a relative resistance to thyroid hormone.
Certain herbal products may inhibit thyroid function
This list is frustratingly long, but consideration of these issues might be important in addressing a person who has a refractory issue.
Thyroid Hormone Therapy Strategies:
The conventional medicine approach employs a synthetic T4. For a lot of people, that is perfectly adequate. There is a group of practitioners who have observed that individuals with the issue of “low metabolism” possess a dominant symptom of fatigue and overall low energy. They have difficulty accomplishing the daily activities of their lives. The belief is that these inherent problems can cause thyroid and or adrenal dysfunction or insufficiency. These clinicians have observed differences in patient history, physical examination, and lab testing based on if the person has a problem that’s predominately thyroid, adrenal or blended. Most of all, they’ve discovered that patients with functional adrenal insufficiency don’t respond to the thyroid gland either clinically or in relation to an improvement of the basal body temperature.
Treatment must be individualized. Tracking on a regular basis is vital. Functional thyroid hormone therapy ought to be performed with consideration of their interaction with other endocrine functions like adrenal function and pituitary function (growth hormone).
Not only are thyroid disorders often poorly diagnosed, but they are also usually poorly handled. Conventional therapies often don’t deal with the root cause of disease. Even after being put on thyroid medication for hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid), most commonly Synthroid® (or levothyroxine), many patients will continue to suffer from symptoms.
Their physicians may insist that if their blood glucose levels are”normal,” their symptoms can not possibly be due to their thyroid. In our practice, we take a holistic way of treating thyroid disorders by finding the disease’s origin and using natural remedies to recover equilibrium in the thyroid.
Thyroid disorder symptoms:
The Thyroid gland plays a significant role in optimum health, and when it is not functioning correctly, many negative symptoms could arise. Regrettably, thyroid problems are often misdiagnosed and may cause a lifetime of drugs and mismanagement. Improper thyroid function may result in many of these symptoms.
Morning headaches that fade
Hypersensitivity to cold
Itchy, dry skin
Low body temperature
Experts think that appropriate bio-specific identification and management can restore thyroid health and alleviate many of its symptoms. Our thorough approach discovers the underlying variables and provides bold solutions that will return you to your ideal health and ideal weight.
Causes of thyroid disorders
When your thyroid does not produce enough hormones, the balance of chemical reactions in your body can be mad. There can be numerous causes, including autoimmune disease, hyperthyroidism therapies, radiation therapy, thyroid surgery, and certain medicines.
Your thyroid is a tiny gland near the base of the front of the neck, just below your Adam’s apple. Hormones produced by the thyroid gland — triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) — have an enormous influence on your health, affecting all aspects of your metabolism. These hormones also influence the management of vital functions, such as heart rate and body temperature.
Hypothyroidism is said to occur when the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones. Hypothyroidism can occur due to several factors, such as:
Autoimmune disease. One common cause of hypothyroidism is Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, an autoimmune disease. Autoimmune disorders can turn your immune system to produce antibodies that attack your cells. Sometimes this method entails your thyroid gland.
Scientists aren’t certain why this happens, but it is likely a combination of variables, including your genes as well as an environmental trigger. However it occurs, these antibodies affect the thyroid’s ability to produce hormones.
Over-response to hyperthyroidism treatment. Individuals who produce too much thyroid hormone (hyperthyroidism) are often treated with radioactive iodine or anti-thyroid medications. The objective of these treatments is to receive thyroid function back to normal. But occasionally, correcting hyperthyroidism may wind up decreasing thyroid hormone production too much, leading to permanent hypothyroidism.
Thyroid surgery. Eliminating all or a large part of your thyroid gland may diminish or stop hormone production. If that’s the case, you should take thyroid hormone for life.
Radiation therapy. Radiation used to treat cancers can affect your thyroid gland and might lead to hypothyroidism.
Medications. Numerous medications can result in hypothyroidism. One such medication is lithium, which can be used to treat certain psychiatric disorders. If you are taking medicine, ask your physician about its impact on your thyroid gland.
Fairly often, hypothyroidism may result from among the following:
The role of the brain
To understand how your mind affects thyroid function, we need to look at the three medical types of hypothyroidism:
Primary hypothyroidism: this implies the issue is located at the thyroid gland itself, and it’s not making enough hormone. By way of instance, this is what happens with Hashimoto’s disease; the gland has been ruined and unable to generate proper levels of the thyroid gland.
Secondary hypothyroidism: this occurs when the adrenal gland (in your brain) doesn’t generate enough of the hormone TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone); consequently, the thyroid gland doesn’t get the message which it needs to produce more thyroid gland. Without enough TSH being generated, the thyroid won’t make enough hormones.
Tertiary hypothyroidism: this happens if there’s a problem in a different part of the brain known as the hypothalamus. This section produces a hormone called TRH (thyrotropin-releasing hormone). If there’s a problem in the hypothalamus and doesn’t create enough TRH, it will result in hypothyroidism.
When there’s a problem or dysfunction in the brain, then insufficient hormones will be generated (TRH / TSH), and the thyroid gland will fail to produce enough thyroid hormone.
So what could cause the mind to not work correctly? In rare cases, it might be a result of head injury or a tumor (these aren’t common causes). We often see that the brain is under pressure in one form or another; this may be due to brain inflammation (brain-fog) or other ailments within the body. We may also observe this abnormality once the body is under stress. Problems like these are often addressed with lifestyle modification, nutritional support, and diet modification.
The last big area where the thyroid gland may fail is beyond the thyroid gland and the brain; it happens in the rest of the body. This is where your thyroid gland may become supercharged. Let’s look at both of these possible scenarios.
Supercharged Thyroid Hormones
Nearly all thyroid hormone made by the thyroid gland is known as T4 (thyroxine); it turns out that this is truly a “pro-hormone,” so it has to be turned into a different hormone before it has any real power. When the thyroid gland produces and releases T4 into the bloodstream, it must be converted to the active and”supercharged” form. The active form of T4 is known as T3 (triiodothyronine), and this conversion process occurs primarily in the kidneys, intestines, and liver. If you are afflicted with a sluggish liver or if your body requires detoxification support, then your liver might not be converting thyroid hormones nicely. Having problems with the digestive tract may also hamper this conversion process of T4 into T3. Most types of the thyroid gland are T4, and if you’re unable to convert this to T3 very well, you will continue to suffer from hypothyroid symptoms. This might be happening if your blood tests have NORMAL levels of T4 and TSH; however, LOW amounts of T3.
Other hormone imbalances may interfere with the thyroid-system, including the use of hormone replacement therapy or birth control pills. Hormones like these can change the levels of specific proteins in your blood. If the amounts of these proteins become raised, they’ll cling to your own thyroid hormones; thus rendering them ineffective; they’re basically”imprisoned.” When too much thyroid gland becomes bound to these proteins, you may experience low thyroid function signs and symptoms. This may be occurring if you’ve got NORMAL levels of TSH, T4, and T3.
An integrative medicine approach evaluates thyroid tests that could help sort out where your thyroid-system is breaking down.
It’s very important to determine what’s gone out of balance if you ever expect to restore optimal thyroid function.
Typically, there is no hypothyroidism diet. Although claims about hypothyroidism diets abound, no evidence eating or avoiding certain foods will enhance thyroid function in people with hypothyroidism.
However, adequate dietary fiber is vital for normal thyroid function. In developed nations, thyroid disorder from iodine deficiency has been almost eliminated by iodine additives in food and salt.
Other supplements such as soy, taken in large quantities, might affect thyroid hormone production but will not result in hypothyroidism in people that aren’t also iodine deficient.
Avoiding dietary extremes will guarantee thyroid health. In case you have concerns, talk to your physician about taking a multivitamin with minerals.
In case you have hypothyroidism, take thyroid hormone replacement medication as directed by your physician — generally with an empty belly. Specific foods, supplements, and drugs can have the identical effect.
Foods to avoid for your thyroid
Some foods can damage your thyroid, and it is better to avoid them. These foods are pro-inflammatory and trigger an inflammatory response in your body when they are consumed.
The root causes of thyroid disorders are inflammation, so unless we eliminate food causing inflammation, your thyroid won’t heal. Those who consume these everyday pro-inflammatory foods will see a worsening of their thyroid problem. These foods to avoid include:
– Processed Meat
– Sugary Foods
– Fried Fatty Foods