published in Thyroid Nation.com
Thyroid problems, such as hypothyroidism or an autoimmune thyroid condition, are never just the result of one or two causal factors; they stem from a number of different causes.
Therefore, in order to overcome thyroid issues, a complex approach is necessary.
I was diagnosed with Hashimoto Thyroiditis in 2009 and developed multiple health issues which left me unable to care for myself. All of this changed when I started looking at underlying causes as to why my immune system and my adrenal glands were overactive.
Let’s take a look at what Symptoms are:
Symptoms appear last, after the body begins to develop malfunction. Therefore, nothing that will “treat” a particular symptom will support the body in its quest to reach homeostasis again.
What we actually need to do is search for
underlying causes of symptoms
What makes this oftentimes a difficult task is the fact that the same symptom can have different causes in different people.
For example, take headaches. Say you are suffering every day from a headache; could it be because you are dehydrated or because of stress in your life, or do you have food sensitivities?
Create a game plan
You know yourself better than anyone else. If you don’t feel well and any approach you or your doctor have tried didn’t make a difference, then you need to take matters into your own hands and seek help from someone who listens to you and knows what to do to get you feeling better.
- Change your diet to a gluten free, dairy free, nightshade free diet. Your immune system will have a better chance to calm down. Oftentimes, TPO antibodies go down as well.
- Find out if you have a parasite and /or Candida overgrowth.
- Tackle biofilm. Parasites, bad bacteria, Candida, and viruses all hide from the immune system by wrapping themselves in layers of cells called biofilm.
“All disease starts in the gut.”
Today, with the study of the microbiome, we know that this statement is very true. We have more bacteria in the gut than cells in our body. We also don’t have enough genes to perform all functions in our body. So, the question arose — who is actually performing those functions our body can’t? Your gut bacteria take on those jobs. Dysbiosis of the gut microbiome (meaning an imbalance of good versus bad bacteria) can lead to a whole host of health issues. The good guys in your digestive system help:
- Keep the bad guys in check
- Train the immune system
- Produce digestive enzymes
- Produce vitamin K2
- Keep the mucosal lining intact
Therefore, choose your probiotic wisely. Only a spore-based probiotic survives the harsh environment in the GI tract.
- Adrenal issues are basically HPA axis issues. The Hypothalamus – Pituitary- Adrenal axis sends hormonal messages from one gland to the other to stimulate or reduce hormone production. There are a number of adaptogenic herbs which can be very helpful, such as Ashwagandha and Rhodiola.
- Blood sugar issues can lead to adrenal issues and lack of sleep. We all know that our body needs sleep to be ready for the next day.
- Get a glucose meter to monitor your blood sugar and adjust your diet accordingly.
- Eat a protein rich breakfast.
- Eat snacks in between meals.
- Stick to healthy fats such as coconut oil and olive oil.
- Eat fiber rich foods.
- Check for mineral imbalances with a hair analysis.
- The Calcium/Potassium ratio and the single levels of those minerals are very important for thyroid function. This ratio gives us the trend of thyroid dysfunction. A blood test oftentimes looks “normal” and, therefore, thyroid issues are dismissed.
- Sodium, Magnesium, Selenium, Iron and Copper are also very important minerals for proper thyroid and adrenal function, and thyroid hormone conversion. You have to remember that the thyroid function will slow down when the adrenal gland function slows down.
- Methylation issues can occur with the presence of gene mutations. We need cofactors, vitamins and minerals, for proper function. Having gene mutations doesn’t mean that your gene doesn’t produce adequate amount of enzymes. It all depends on your lifestyle, the diet you eat, the toxic load on your body, etc. With proper nutrition, gene mutations can be bypassed. Vitamin B6, 12, and folate are very important for the immune system and brain function. The gene test, 23andme, can be ordered online if you are interested in the status of your gene mutations.
- Get a blood test. A chemical panel and a complete blood count will give you a lot of information about hydration status, infections markers, and liver enzyme function. Only a functional analysis of the blood test result will look at patterns. Looking at single high or low blood markers doesn’t tell you anything and only leads to “treating” the test result. Only when blood levels fall into the optimal ranges can the body can start to heal itself.
The bottom line is to pay attention to stress. You can identify and minimize a lot of external stressors, and with the help of a professional, using functional lab tests, you can find internal stressors.
With the removal or reduction of stress, the whole body has a chance to recover.
Linda Wilbert – Stewart, FDN-P, HHP