September 20 2021
The thyroid gland plays an important role in controlling the various aspects of metabolism, such as regulating the production of hormones, which help in carrying out vital body functions like digestion and reproduction. In individuals suffering from disorders of the thyroid gland, it ends up pumping out either too much or too little amounts of certain hormones. Such changes may cause problems related to the regulation of body weight and mood stabilization. The most important hormones produced by the thyroid gland are called T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (thyroxine). These hormones being released by the thyroid gland, reach throughout the body utilizing the bloodstream and enable the conversion of oxygen and calories into energy. This energy is used to carry out various metabolic activities such as cognitive functions, mood regulation, digestive processes, and maintenance of a healthy sex drive.
Signs and Symptoms of Thyroid Problems
There are two main types of disorders associated with the thyroid gland are hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid) and hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid). In individuals who have hypothyroidism, the body slows down. This leads to the manifestation of symptoms like weight gain, brain fog, and sluggishness. On the other hand, Hyperthyroidism causes the opposite effect. It is responsible for the speeding of the metabolism causing body changes like the heart may beat faster, inability to eat properly, and keeping enough weight on.
The most common symptoms of hypothyroidism are Persistent fatigue, lethargy, depression, reduced motivation to exercise, Moodiness and anxiety, Intolerance to cold, feeling frequent chills, presence of Dry hair and skin, cool and clammy skin, the toes and fingers might look blue or purple colour in some cases, brain fog, trouble concentrating, forgetfulness, A hoarse voice, Unexplainable weight gain, Constipation, bloating, Muscle weakness, aches or pains, and other body discomforts. Symptoms of hyperthyroidism commonly include:
Nervousness, symptoms of anxiety, Insomnia and sleep troubles, Racing heart, Eyes that appear large, Unexplained weight loss, High amounts of perspiration, Muscle weakness, Multiple bowel movements, Thin and brittle hair.
Natural Treatments for Thyroid Problems
Since both the thyroid problems, hypothyroidism, and hyperthyroidism are different, the treatment regimen to be followed for both conditions also differs. The options for treatment also differ based on each patient’s particular symptoms and the specifics of the case. The common treatment modalities for dealing with thyroid problems are :
In people suffering from hypothyroidism, the body needs more amounts of thyroid hormones. This can be achieved by taking synthetic thyroxine or T4. In people who do not respond to this therapy, taking a combination of the synthetic version of T4 and T3 can be effectively used to reduce the symptoms. In the case of hyperthyroidism, the most commonly used treatment method is the use of radioactive iodine, known as radioiodine. Anti-thyroid medications are prescribed which help in reducing and normalizing thyroid function. Usage of drugs that can stop the production of the thyroid hormone also is one of the treatment options. Surgery can be done to remove a large amount of the actual thyroid gland. In addition to these conventional methods, There are some natural approaches to treating thyroid problems like:
- Intake of Enough Iodine, Selenium, Zinc
It has been proven that in patients with hypothyroid diseases who are deficient in iodine, increasing the iodine intake is very effective in stimulating the thyroid gland to produce more of the necessary hormones. Since Iodine is a key mineral that is vital for converting and enabling the release of thyroid hormones, consumption of iodine-rich foods like seaweed is recommended. Using iodine supplements in low doses is also beneficial in treating thyroid problems. Selenium is also effective in maintaining the balance in the levels of T4 hormones. Thus, intake of foods high in selenium like Brazil nuts, spinach, yellowfin tuna or halibut, canned sardines, grass-fed beef, turkey, and beef liver is also beneficial in these cases. Studies show that minerals such as zinc and also B vitamins (especially vitamin B12) are necessary for the maintenance of thyroid health. Consumption of animal proteins (beef, turkey, eggs, etc.), provides the much-needed amino acids. Intake of certain anti-inflammatory plants like green peas, asparagus, chickpeas, cocoa, Brussels sprouts, sesame seeds, flaxseeds, nuts like pistachios, and mushrooms are also helpful in reducing the symptoms associated with thyroid disease. Alvizia ZMA supplements help in improving the functioning of the thyroid gland.
- Effective Management of Stress and getting Enough rest
When the body is under a great deal of physical or emotional stress, it gets manifested in the form of symptoms like feeling very anxious, overworked, fatigued, and angry. This has many harmful effects on the body, such as narrowing of blood vessels, increasing muscle tension and blood pressure. It also triggers the release of inflammatory proteins and antibodies that can suppress immune function and cause damage to the thyroid gland. Thus, people suffering from thyroid problems often undergo hormonal changes which cause lowered libido, fertility problems, and mood swings. To prevent the occurrence of these symptoms, it is important to take stress seriously and tackle the root causes of mental strain. It is essential to use various methods to handle stress like getting seven to nine hours of sleep every night, meditating, exercising, dealing with addictions, and scheduling time to do things that help in relaxing the body.
- Reducing Toxicity in the body
When chemical toxins from various sources like medications, hormonal birth control pills or other hormone replacements, and commercial beauty or cleaning products get ingested into the body, they can contribute to various harmful conditions such as the leaky gut and inflammatory reactions. The use of natural products, decreasing the intake of any unnecessary and over-the-counter medications, cleaning up the body’s diet, and quitting smoking are some of the ways to reduce toxicity in the body.
- Using Supplements to Reduce Inflammation
Along with the consumption of foods that provide anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids such as wild-caught fish, flaxseeds, and walnuts, it is beneficial to include supplements of omega 3 fatty acids such as Alviza fish oil supplements as it improves thyroid function. Probiotics are effective in improving the conditions associated with poor gut health and they also enhance immunity. These supplements may help in elevating the mood and support the functioning of the thyroid gland.
The inclusion of various adaptogen herbs such as Ashwagandha, Tulsi, ginseng, licorice root, and Rhodiola can also help the body in fighting the battle against the negative effects of stress as it improves the functioning of the thyroid gland and helps in balancing the hormones thereby regulating the body.