Approximately 25 million Americans suffer from thyroid dysfunction and more than half of them don’t know what to do about it. Hypothyroidism is a condition when the thyroid gland is underactive. The thyroid is gland that is placed in the focal point of the neck and its function affects almost every organ in the body. If the thyroid is not working properly neither will your body.
These are the 10 common symptoms of an under-active thyroid gland:
1. Feeling tired even after sleeping 8-10 hours
2. Unexplained weight gain or inability to lose weight
3. Anxiety, depression or other state of mind issues
4. Hormonal imbalance such as low sex drive, sporadic periods or infertility
5. Tendonitis, carpal tunnel disorder, joint torment and muscle agony
6. Body temperature lower than 98.5, cold hands and feet, feeling cold even when others aren’t
7. Unusual male pattern baldness, fragile nails and dry or breaking skin
9. Poor memory and concentration, mind fog
10. Dry voice, snoring and neck swelling
How does the thyroid gland work?
The production of the thyroid hormone is regulated with the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland and the thyroid gland. The hormone called Hypothalamic thyrotropin-discharging hormone (TRH) stimulates the synthesis and secretion of the pituitary thyrotropin (TSH).
As a result, the TSH stimulates the production and the secretion of T4 and T3 from the thyroid. As soon as the optimal levels of T4 are achieved, it signals the TRH and TSH that there is enough thyroid hormone and that the production should stop.
The T4 is an inactive form of the hormone, and it is about 85% of all the hormones produced by the thyroid gland. After the production of T4, a small amount of this hormone converts into T3 which is the active form of the hormone.
T4 can also convert into Free T3 or Reverse T3. The Free T3 is a more important hormone that can attach to a receptor thus speed up your metabolism, maintain your body temperature, keep your mind and bowels working, and maintain optimal hormone levels.
Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is an autoimmune disease that is commonly known as hypothyroidism. The number of patients diagnosed with this condition increases every ear. An autoimmune disease makes your body turns on itself and attack a certain organ or tissue as it is foreign.
Why is hypothyroidism under diagnosed in the USA?
Most doctors only spend a few minutes discussing the symptoms with the patients and test only TSH and T4 levels without checking FT3, RT3 or thyroid antibodies. Doctors usually use normal lab references as a guide without taking the patients symptoms into consideration.
Lab tests that can determine thyroid issues
- Free T3
- Free T4
- Reverse T3
- Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies (TPOAb)
- Thyroglobulin Antibodies (TgAb)
- TSH 1-2 UIU/ML or lower (Armour or compounded T3 can artificially suppress TSH)
- FT4 >1.1 NG/DL
- FT3 > 3.2 PG/ML
- RT3 less than a 10:1 ratio RT3:FT3
- TPO < 9 IU/ML or negative
- TgAb < 4 IU/ML or negative
10 ways to improve thyroid function
1.Make sure you are taking supplements that include Zinc, Selenium, Iron, Vitamin D, B Vitamins and Iodine
2.Take tyrosine and iodine supplements to improve the FT4 to FT3 conversion
3.Consume gluten-free foods and try to completely avoid grain and legume
4.Try to reduce stress and anxiety and support your adrenal glands. The adrenal glands work hand in hand with the thyroid. Try adaptogenic herbs and therapeutic yoga which can help the adrenal glands cope with stress.
5.Try to sleep 8-10 hours at night.
6.Ask your dentist to remove any amalgam fillings.
7.Avoid eating too much cruciferous vegetables. There is a debate about this.
8.Remove fluoride, chlorine and bromide from your diet and environment.
9.Improve the function and health of your gut. A properly functioning digestive tract is essential for your health.
10.Consult a specialist about performing the abovementioned tests and discovering what is the cause of the thyroid imbalance.