An estimated 20 million Americans have some form of thyroid disease. An estimated 60 percent of those with thyroid disease are unaware of their condition. Thyroid health is essential to the repair and maintenance of the human body.
- Women are five to eight times more likely than men to have thyroid problems.
- Undiagnosed thyroid disease may put patients at risk for certain serious conditions, such as cardiovascular diseases, osteoporosis and infertility.
- Testing TSH is generally the only thyroid test many people will receive from their medical doctor
- TSH is only correlated with about 50% of thyroid disorders
- TSH may not be elevated for decades while autoimmune and thyroid disease is occurring
- There are over 22 patterns of hypothyroidism
- Thyroid disorders usually secondary to underlying predisposing or exacerbating factors.
- Thyroid is the most important hormone in fetal development and health – yet over half of all women are hypothyroid during pregnancy. Many pregnant women with undiagnosed or inadequately treated hypothyroidism have an increased risk of miscarriage, preterm delivery, and severe developmental problems in their children.
Thyroid health is essential in:
- Bone metabolism
- GI function
- Male reproduction
- Gall bladder & liver function
- Growth hormone – “anti-aging” hormone
- Fat burning
- Insulin & Glucose metabolism
- Brain chemistry
- Cardiovascular health
Signs that you may have a thyroid imbalance:
- Cold insensitivity
- Weight gain
- Muscle weakness
- Low libido
- Depression (frontal cortex)
- Brain Fog
- Ocular swelling
- Dry skin
- Weight gain
- Finger nail changes
- Chronic infections
- Elevated or depressed cholesterol (inversely proportional to thyroid levels)
- Low Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)
- Morning headaches the wear off as the day progresses
- Weight gain despite adhering to a low calorie diet
- Loss of outermost part of the eyebrow
- Slow wound healing
- Mental sluggishness
- Any sign or no sign at all
Lab evaluations: A thorough Thyroid Panel is essential to achieving thyroid health naturally. TSH offers little information.
Necessary testing to assess thyroid health:
- TSH – gives a basic evaluation of pituitary and thyroid function
- Total T4 (TT4) – bound fraction
- Free T4 (fT4) – free form available for conversion
- Total T3 (TT3) – bound fraction
- Free T3 (fT3) – bioavailable, bioactive
- Reverse T3 (rT3) – less bioavailable, blocks T3
- fT3/rT3 ratio Free Thyroxine Index
- T3 uptake (THBR)
- Thyroid Antibodies – (thyroid peroxidase antibody, thyroglobulin antibody, thyroid stimulating immunoglobulin)
Common Thyroid Conditions:
- Primary Hypothyroidism – the only true thyroid dysfunction and the only one that can be effectively managed thyroid replacement hormone.
- Hypothyroidism secondary to pituitary hypofunction.
- Thyroid under conversion
- Thyroid over conversion
- Thyroid Binding Globulin (TBG) elevation – usually associated with oral contraceptives or estrogen replacement therapies. In the presence of too much estrogen in the system, the body will produce too many TBG’s. The TBG’s grab onto the free thyroid hormones and prevent them from entering the cells.
- Thyroid resistance – Pituitary and thyroid are working normally but the thyroid hormones are not entering the cells. TSH normal, all blood tests normal
- Autoimmune Thyroid (Hashimoto, Grave’s, autoimmune thyroiditis) – the cause of thyroid imbalance can be autoimmune or hyper immune related
Natural treatment for thyroid dysfunction: Natural Medicine has demonstrated to be highly effective in the treatment of all of the above thyroid disorders. Utilizing herbal medicine, glandular therapy, and other effective treatment options, thyroid disorders including autoimmune thyroid disorders are improved from natural medicine care.