Issue # 146 October 24, 2013


Welcome to KnowYourThyroid.

I hope everyone is having a good week!

Today, we are covering the most common symptoms of thyroid disease. I, for one, didn’t know when I was first diagnosed with Graves Disease, that depression was a symptom of thyroid disease. The conversation with my thyroid doctor on my last visit went like this: I have treated the Graves Disease with RAI, now I will give you a prescription for Synthyroid, and you can go on your merry way. Do not ask for any other RX because I only prescribe Synthroid and oh, by the way, you can go back to your primary care doctor, I don’t want to see you anymore.

I totally trusted my thyroid doctor, after all he was the specialist,  but, he failed in all aspects of my treatment. I had no idea of any other treatment options but RAI and most of all, I had no idea of the devestaing symptoms that come with hypothyroidism. He discussed none of this with me. And I didn’t ask!So, I struggled with depression, dry skin, swelling, not knowing it all had to do with my thyroid or lack of.

Since many of the symptoms of thyroid disease mimic other diseases, it is hard to know the problem is your thyroid. Plus, most doctors rely on just TSH levels to diagnose thyroid dysfunction so many symptoms are not relieved .

 The top thyroid disease symptoms and how to heal  them

By J.D. Heyes

How much do you really know about your thyroid?
Extrapolating that  further, how could you tell if your thyroid wasn’t healthy, and what could you  do to fix it?
First things first. Your thyroid is a small,  butterfly-shaped structure that sits just below the thyroid cartilage (your  Adam’s apple) and wraps partially around your larynx (wind pipe). It’s main  function is to produce hormones; when healthy, your thyroid is responsible for  a) boosting your energy; b) warming you; c) keeping your immune system up and  running.
Sometimes your thyroid produces too many hormones. That  condition, known as hyperthyroidism, can produce rapid, forceful heartbeats,  breathlessness, dramatic weight loss, nervousness, insomnia, an increased  appetite, sweating and – in women – light or absent periods
But your  thyroid can also work too slowly; that is known as hypothyroidism , and  it’s the more common thyroid disorder. Some of the signs of an underactive  thyroid include swelling in the arms, legs or face; abdominal weight gain; cold  hands and feet (and fungus growth in your nail beds); increased susceptibility  to colds and flu; and dryness, which can manifest itself as hair loss, brittle  nails, achy joints and constipation. The condition can also lead to  moderate-to-severe depression.
One thing to note: There seems to be a  disagreement within the medical community these days about which tests are more  effective evaluating thyroid function.
According to,  “traditionally, TSH, Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone that is released from the  pituitary gland in the brain, would be checked along with the two thyroid hormones it produces, T3 and T4. However, it has become commonplace to only test  for TSH, and that is only one part of a very detailed picture. There are many  other mechanisms at work in thyroid health.”
What makes your thyroid  tick?
A healthy thyroid; for instance, relies on a few  factors:
— Stable levels of other hormones, such as estrogen and  progesterone. “Too much estrogen, such as from the birth control pill, will  create too many thyroid-binding proteins,” says
—  Beneficial gut bacteria. “Antibiotics wipe out these good microbes, which  account for around 20 percent of the conversion of T4 to usable T3,” said the  site.
— A healthy liver.
— Good adrenal gland  function.
“Clearly, with so many pathways available for the production  and conversion of thyroid hormones, there are a lot of opportunities for  something to go wrong,” says
There are other things that  affect thyroid health, says  pharmacist Suzi Cohen.
“People with high insulin levels face a greater  risk of thyroid problems because it can cause thyroid resistance; the thyroid  hormones can’t get into the cells or aren’t as effective as they should be,” she  writes, making reduction of excess insulin levels “critical.”
Making  your thyroid work like it should
There are ways – traditionally and  naturally – to treat thyroid problems. As always, consult a  physician.
One way is with traditional medicine. “Most physicians treat  hypothyroidism with medications because it’s quick and easy. And drug therapy is  necessary in many cases, at least for short periods,” Cohen says, cautioning  that those with diabetes and heart disease should use caution in taking such medications.
But there are other,  natural ways to preserve – and rebuild – thyroid health.
A diet rich in  fruits and veggies is good, but you need to be careful: “Long-term consumption  of soy foods or eating too much oatmeal, fiber supplements and fiber-rich foods  (like cereal) and cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower or Brussels  sprouts) may interfere with proper thyroid metabolism or absorption,” says  Cohen.
Iodine is critical in the production of thyroid hormone (Cohen says she supplements with Iodoral, a combination of iodine-iodide). “Stay  away from food made with white flour because processing creates the toxic  chemical bromine, which competes with and replaces iodine,”  she writes. Iron is also necessary for the production of thyroid  hormone.
Antioxidants also seem to help correct improperly functioning  thyroids. “Doctors may use Glutathione in their treatment of chronic thyroid  conditions. Glutathione is the “mother-load” of anti-oxidants,” says the  National Thyroid Institute . “Many doctors at the institute have seen  miraculous changes in our patient population as a result of our specific  glutathione protocols. Glutathione is especially helpful with autoimmune  diseases.”
Finally, many experts recommend low-glycemic foods.  “Strategies to reduce your “glycemic load” include eating more whole grains,  beans, lentils, nuts, fruits and non-starchy vegetables, cutting back on  high-glycemic foods, such as skinless potatoes, white bread and instant rice,  and limiting sugary foods, like cakes, candy and soft  drinks.”
Learn more:

If you are looking for a thyroid healing diet, based on all natural foods, check out:

     The Natural Thyroid Diet.