- Mood issue (from ups and downs to major depression- 20% of people!)
- Coldness and achiness
- Weight gain, no matter how well you eat
- Memory loss
- Brain fog
- Cognitive decline, even Alzheimer’s disease
- Cold feet and a need for socks in bed
- Thinning outer third of your eyebrows
- Thinning hair
Actually the thinning hair is due to the thyroid affecting the functioning of other sex hormones: progresterone, pregnenolone and cortisol. These other hormones can impact hair loss, and we know that 30% of women at age 30 have hair loss, as do 50% of women age 50!
And since cholesterol is so important in production of those other hormones, “you might need to improve your thyroid as a function of working with cholesterol rather then being in a mad rush to start a statin” – Dr. Sara Gottfried, The Hormone Cure bestselling author.
High cholesterol, especially when it is not responsive to diet, exercise, or cholesterol-lowering medications are all very common signs of undiagnosed low thyroid. Unusually low cholesterol levels may be a sign of excessive thyroid hormone.
If you suffer from mild to moderate depression it could be an indication to have your thyroid thoroughly examined by a good doctor (the one that will run a TSH, free T3 and free T4 test without telling you that you are out of your mind for asking for all three of them). It is scientifically proven that mild to moderate depression is not successfully treated by antidepressants. It is only the severe depression that has been effectively treated with some of the SSRI like Prozac, Zoloft and Paxils.
My approach is to try to find the ROOT Cause of anything – sluggish thyroid, poor mood, weakness, lack of joy, stubborn weight and I would like to awaken this investigative approach in you.
What are some of the most common causes of a slow thyroid?
- Autoimmune Thyroditis, also known as Hashimoto’s Thyroditis, where your autoimmune system is attacking your thyroid (get off the gluten NOW, don’t add oil to the fire!)
- Stress (sounds familiar?)
- Environment – exposure to endocrine disruptors
- Goiters – swelling of the thyroid gland
- Genetics – if your parent has thyroid issues, chances are you too might have it
- Cancer treatments
- Lack of Vitamin D (it is actually a hormone not a vitamin). In the functional medicine world the optimal levels are between 75-90 units, not 30, but they need to be tested, as fat soluble vitamins do not leave the body like water soluble ones (it is hard to overdose on Vitamin C…) and you do not want to have too much. Ask your doctor for 25 Hydroxy test and check several times during the year if low
- Diet – certain foods, like the cruciferous vegetables so good for your estrogen balance, can sometimes slow down your thyroid, especially if they are raw. Exercise moderation! It is not about having a kale smoothie with every meal. It is about ensuring you have a variety of colors, raw and cooked throughout the day, not getting stuck on one and in big quantities.
- Gluten sensitivity or intolerance – Celiac and sensitivity to gluten triples your risk of having low thyroid function! But also the reverse is often true – people with low Thyroid function should be tested for Celiac or gluten sensitivity. Removing gluten reverses the thyroid problems.
What are the solutions for low thyroid?
- Lifestyle tweaks
- Filling in nutrition gaps – copper, zinc, selenium, vitamin A, D, iron, raw brassica.
- Removing heavy metals, especially mercury
- Taking it easy with soy, which can sometimes slow down your thyroid (just stay away from processed soy, go for small amounts of fermented, the way it is supposed to be eaten)
- Sometimes, and only if lifestyle changes and botanicals have failed, a bio-identical hormonal therapy in small doses and according to dr. Sara Gottfried for a brief amount of time
One of my favorite ways to check for imbalances is to go through a detox. The lifestyle tweaks you need to undertake while being properly guided make you discover a lot about yourself. You might realize you suffer from food sensitivities, adrenal fatigue, thyroid malfunctions. You might discover higher calling, the purpose of your life (that’s from removing all that clutter) and the points of dissatisfaction.
I strongly encourage you to take this small, yet very important step towards feeling better! It is your birthright to feel so!