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Thyroid - Not so Simple

Discussion in 'Articles on Health and Nutrition' started by Nutrition_Observer, Dec 15, 2016.

  1. Nutrition_Observer

    Nutrition_Observer Administrator Staff Member

    Thyroid problems are not as simple as some try to make them seem. The result of this is that people are receiving help to deal with a serious health problem that is as effective as it should be and as a result people are living in hidden suffering.


    How Big is the problem

    There are a large number of people with a thyroid condition, some are receiving some type of treatment and others are not. This number has been reported to be at least 7% of the general population in the United States for example.


    The typical treatment for one who has a low level of thyroid function is to give them a synthetic thyroid. This at first seems to be a reasonable approach to take and is the typical experience of many.


    Connections - Overview

    What many patients do not know is that the function of the thyroid may not be the root cause of what they are experiencing. It is really the symptom of another problem is a good question to ask? When it comes to health problems there are different approaches that can be used. Many doctors choose to treat the symptoms, but not the root cause. This is like seeing there is a leak from your roof and put a bucket on the floor to catch the water but not fix the roof.


    To look at only the thyroid is an overly simplistic way to look at what may be a more complex issue. In this presentation the connection between several systems of the body will be shown.


    Connections - Details


    There are several glands in the human body that are connected and work in conjunction with each other. They for what is called the Thyroid-Adrenal-Pancreas Axis and also the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis


    The function of the thyroid is dependent upon the adrenal working as expected. When the adrenal is not functioning as expected it will cause thyroid problems. Using the concept of the roof one should confirm that the adrenals are working properly before determining a course of action for the thyroid.


    It has been reported that many people who experience thyroid problems also have issues with the Lymph Nodes. The Lymph is a second system that moves fluid through the body. Unlike blood that has the heart to pump, the Lymph fluid moves when the body moves.


    Connections - Misdiagnosis, Adrenals and Tests


    Today in modern medicine there is a philosophy held by many that considers the body as a collection of individual parts, and so there are doctors that will treat only a single type of issue and not look for others items that may be interrelated.


    When one does a thyroid function test one should also be conducting a test of the adrenals since they are interconnected.


    There are two tests that can be done for adrenal function, this is done by measuring the level of free key adrenal hormones such as cortisol and DHEA. The first test is the saliva test it is not done often, but may provide a better indication as it measures the amount of free and circulating hormones. The second test is that of blood serum which is more commonly done. There are many times where the saliva test will indicate a problem but the blood test will not.


    The result of not doing both tests is that a patient can be told that their adrenal function is normal, but in fact it is not. The result is that neither the patient or the doctor know the true scope of the patients problem and the correct course of action will not be undertaken.

    This is a documented link between Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrena Axis and depression and obesity.


    Adrenals - Signs


    One of the main factors that impacts the function of the Adrenals is stress. The body is designed to function at an increased rate when under stress, but it will suffer when exposed to stress over the long term.


    There are certain things that people may crave when suffering from Adrenal function that is out of balance. Foods that provide instant energy such as: white bread, soda, donuts, and coffee. This is an indication that the body has a low blood sugar condition.


    Another craving is salt. When the body has a craving it is an indication that it is missing something. Salt has been given a bad name, read the article on salt (???).



    Signs - Thyroid

    There are a number of observations and self tests that one can do that can indicate an adrenal issue: dry skin, lying down vs standing blood pressure different, light headed if stand too quickly, trouble waking in the morning, craving sugary or salty foods, Pupil test, and the body temperature variation for example. The saliva test is the most accurate.


    Where to start

    It is always best to start at the beginning. There are however too many clinicians who do not start at the beginning.


    The beginning is the hypothalamus-pituitary axis. Essential fatty acids (EFA) are the food for the hypothalamus, dry skin can be an indication that one is lacking EFAs. Flax seed oil is a great source of EFAs, see the article on the Budwig Protocol for more information.



    Step - Personal Inventory

    A personal inventory of exposure to and consumption of items that are related to female hormones can provide important information. These can have a huge impact upon one’s physical and emotional balance.


    It is always good to keep stress under control in any circumstance. More important than eliminating stress is learning how to deal with stress and keep it under control.


    Check if one’s schedule is in sync with the sun’s. One should follow the lead of the sun and not fight against it.


    When the body is active the Lymph fluid moves through the body. The Lymph fluid should be on the move.


    A number of people who have diabetes also have a thyroid issue. Read the article on diabetes for more information on this.




    One needs to keep in mind the complexity that exists in the relationship between the Thyroid Adrenal Pancreas and Pituitary. If one chooses to take a simplistic view of them they can potentially miss the root cause of the issue.



    Step - Testing

    To allow for a full medical diagnosis one should have a range of tests done. Tests that can indicate issues include for example: saliva and blood tests for adrenals, thyroid function, iodine, diabetes and Vitamin D.




    Adrenal - Keep the Power Plant Running

    The adrenals can be thought of as a power plant. They need to have a good store of raw materials and then they are able to provide the power that is needed.


    Maintain a healthy level of blood sugar during the day. Avoid sugars and foods that have been industrially processed. These will spike the blood sugar. If you have an issue with Diabetes see the article on Diabetes for more details.


    Avoid artificial stimulants for example soft drinks and coffee. When your body is tired give it the rest that it needs.


    Add essential fatty acids to your diet. The article on the Budwig protocol provides details on this.


    Get extra sleep. Go to bed early and get up late.


    Exercise this boosts the level of energy that the body has.


    Identify food allergies. There are blood tests that can identify hidden food allergies. Many food allergies are not to the food but to the industrial processing that it is subjected to.




    Hypothalamic


    The Hypothalamic is part of the HPA Axis and it controls the pituitary gland. It is the exposure to estrogen in birth control pills that has the Hypothalamic inhibit ovulation. In this it is clear that the increased level of estrogen changes the behavior of multiple items within the body.


    Thyroid - Hormones out of Balance


    A majority of people with thyroid problems are women. This provides a key to understanding how to deal with the thyroid and where to start looking. Unfortunately there is a deception held by some that says men and women are the same, except that woman can give birth.


    In my opinion there are two items that are different between men and women that probably affect the thyroid. First, the level of female hormones that are in the body. Second, the way that stress is handled.


    There are some aspects issue of usage of female hormones that some will find controversial due to the social and moral implications of it or others are not. Hormones are powerful compounds and have profound effects upon the body.


    First, there is a chemical called BPA (Bisphenol A) it has been linked to thyroid problems, as the body responds to it as a female hormone. BPA is found in many places from plastic water bottles to supermarket receipts. Since, health concerns have been raised it is being replaced by BPS, some feel that BPS is even worse than BPA, time will tell.


    Second, there are a few ugly thing about soy that are not spoken of. Soy elevates the level of female hormones in the body. A 100 grams of soy protein has as much estrogen as a birth control pill. A great deal of soy has been modified on the genetic level. An experiment was done feeding female rats GMO soy to pregnant rats many of the offspring died and others had a low birth weight.


    Third, birth control pills which have allowed for there to be an explosion of the amount of sex outside of the traditional marriage. These work by changing the levels of female hormones to prevent a woman from becoming pregnant.


    These three things change the levels of hormones in a woman’s body. Each of them has been documented in various studies to have an affect upon the thyroid. All three of these items are man made and change the typical cycle and life experience of a woman. This then would not be a shock if there were unintended consequences.


    The BPA and Soy are things that a man can expose himself to and could also have an effect upon him to start the process to change his physiology to be closer to that of a woman. This is seen by the growth of man boobs for example.


    The second major item affecting the thyroid is stress. Men and women typically cope with stress in different ways. A man is more likely to use some sort of physical outlet as a stress reliever. The woman is more likely to internalize the stress and hold on to it. Unresolved stress has been seen to have a negative effect upon the thyroid.


    Support by Stress relief


    When it comes to stress the issue is not so much as to eliminating stress, as this is part of life. The issues is how that one deals with stress when it happens. There are many different ways to deal with stress when it comes.


    In the Judeo-Christian tradition for example the LORD said to Moses “Be still and know that I am God”. The LORD was telling Moses to stop all that he was doing. This is something that is so opposite to the way that most people live their lives as they are continually on the go and always interacting with family, cell phones, email, and social media. The second part of the command is to look at someone that is bigger than they and and to draw confidence from the one they are looking to.



    Support by Sun


    Life on earth is totally dependent upon the Sun. When one looks at ecosystem it is easy to see how it was designed to harness the energy of the sun and to work with and not against the sun. If the sun was to stop shining life on earth would cease.


    The body is designed to work best that it sleeps when it is night and is active up when the sun is up. When one has a sleep cycle that they are sleeping when the sun is shining even for a few hours it takes the body and causes it to be out of balance. This many times manifests itself as depression.


    There is a need for exposure to outdoor direct sunlight. The sun emits light on multiple wavelengths some are able to penetrate glass but others are not.


    One needs to get outside and get direct light to produce Vitamin D and intracellular glutathione. When one has enough of these there are multiple benefits including overall energy level, immune system, and the ability to detox the body.


    It does not take much sunlight to provide this benefit to the body. There is not a benefit to sunburn and it should be avoided. When one’s hormones are out of balance one can be more sensitive to sun that typical.


    A proper sleep cycle and some exposure to the sun has been shown to be helpful for people to deal with multiple issues related to their body. Moderation is a key and one needs to listen to what their body is saying.


    Support by Iodine


    Iodine is a vital mineral that the thyroid uses to make some hormones. If you are having issues it is important to check the level.


    In the United States much of the table salt has iodine added to it. This was done for in certain parts of Michigan there was a low amount of iodine from the rest of food supply and people were developing ???. Many people think that they receive a benefit from the added iodine. What is not commonly known is that the iodine that is added to the salt is not stable and breaks down over time. In an environment with 60% relative humidity after 1 year 40% of the iodine has been lost. What many people think is a source of protection may not be one.


    There are natural sources of Iodine. The amount exact amount will vary depending upon a number of things.

    Food Serving Iodine (mcg)


    Cod 3 ounces 99

    Shrimp 3 ounces 35

    Milk 1 cup 56

    Egg boiled 1 large 12

    Potato with peel, baked 1 medium 60



    Coconut Oil

    There are reports of people taking two to three tablespoon a day of Virgin Cold Pressed Coconut oil seeing thyroid improvement. Coconut oil is processed easily by the body and there are several different functions within the body that are reported work better when one takes coconut oil, it is known for example to increase blood flow in the brain.


    It is possible that the relief people are seeing from using coconut oil is not so much dealing with the thyroid, but it is dealing with an underlying issue that is being manifested in the thyroid.


    Desiccated Thyroid and Depression

    Many people who take Synthroid also suffer from depression, this link is a well known and documented one. There are many reports of patients who have found relief from depression by switching from Synthroid to desiccated thyroid. It is interesting to note that many Doctors when faced with patients who are suffering with depression refuse to try something that has been used for 100 years that is natural. Synthroid contains only T4 only, but the desiccated thyroid contains T1, T2, T3, T4 and calcitonin. The hormones can be thought of: T4 is the storage hormone; T3 is the active, energy-giving hormone. Please note that the dosage requirements can be different with Synthroid compared to desiccated thyroid make sure to review this with a clinical professional experienced with changing from one type of medicine to another.


    Dried thyroid powder was developed in the 19th century. Many people with underactive thyroid have found it to be beneficial. It goes by many names including: "natural thyroid", "natural thyroid hormones", "pork thyroid", thyroid USP, thyroid BP, and commercially by "Armour Thyroid", "Nature-Throid" and "Westhroid". It has been used for over 100 years.


    Since it was developed so long ago there are no patents on it and as such there is no benefit to the Pharmaceutical companies to market it. Synthroid has been a great source of income however to its makes.


    Unfortunately many doctors only are willing to use Synthroid. One way to find a doctor who uses desiccated thyroid go to your pharmacy and ask what doctors are prescribing it.


    Summary

    It seems that there is a lot of information here. There is a great deal of complexity with issues related to the Thyroid-Adrenal-Pancreas Axis also Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis, but what has been presented here only scratches the surface of the interaction and various issues that are involved. For example some people have an issue when they start taking a birth control pill, but others see the issue when they stop.


    H. L. Mencken said “For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.” Take the time and effort to seek for the right answer.




    This document is for educational purposes only. Please read our “Medical Information Disclaimer”
     

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