It may be a relief to know when your Dr says that thyroid function is normal, and that blood levels of thyroxin are within normal parameters, but how accurate is your blood test?
It is rare to have a primary thyroid problem, but functional hypothyroidism is common and often unrecognized by the modern medical community due to the blood containing thyroxin levels within the normal range, however, thyroxin imbalances will only show in blood tests if 75% of the gland is inefficient.
In this post, we will cover:
What is the thyroid?
The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland that is part of the endocrine system and resides at the base of the neck, just below your Adam’s apple.
The thyroid gland is like an energy thermostat for your body. When your thyroid is in balance, your energy and wellbeing are enhanced.
The thyroid is also thought to be associated with your metabolism. There are thyroid hormones receptors on every cell in your body, and they dictate how quickly every cell in your body does what it does. So if the thyroid slows down, everything slows down.
The technical part of the post!
T4 and T3 are the thyroid hormones which are produced and secreted by the thyroid gland. Each molecule of T4 and T3 is made up of iodine and a protein (in the form of iodide). T3 contains 3 molecules of iodide and T4 contains 4 molecules of iodide – hence the names T3 and T4.
T3 is the active hormone, although T4 is produced in greater quantity, T4 is required to go through a process via the liver, kidneys and digestive tract in order to be converted to T3.
Symptoms of hypothyroidism
- Reduced blood supply to the skin
- Fatigue and low energy levels
- Worse in the morning and tend to improve as the day goes on
- Tend to have high cholesterol
- Prone to heart disease
- Cold hands and feet
- Cracking of the heels in the feet
- Dry, chapped flaky skin
- Soft fingernails, no half moons
- Fine or thinning hair or coarse unmanageable hair
- Premature hair loss
- Eyebrow thinning or loss, especially 1/3 at the end.
- Crying for no reason (iodine deficiency)
- Muscle cramps – especially at night
- Tend to be constipated
- Headaches and dizziness
- Dislike being watched by crowds
- Poor memory, low concentration levels, depression
- Water retention, puffiness under eyes, around wrists and ankles, puffy tongue
- Low libido
- Menstrual cramps
- Difficulty in losing weight
- Postnatal depression
- Shoulder pain, elbow pain, joint stiffness, lower back pain
Symptoms of hyperthyroidism
- Unexplained weight loss
- Increased energy
- Metabolic rate increases
- Elevated heart rate
- Increase in blood pressure
- Bulging eyes
- Hands have a tremor
- Immune and digestive issues
- Racing heartbeat
- Itchy skin
- Not wanting/needing rest and sleep
- Mentally active
Possible reasons for dysfunction
- When T4 goes through the digestive tract in order to be converted to the active hormone T3, this will be totally dependant on healthy gut flora. Therefore, working to heal imbalances in the gut, having proper bowel movements of at least 1-3 times a day, getting good quality prebiotics and probiotics in is essential.
- Medical Medium, Anthony William, states that over 95% of thyroid disorders stem from infection with the Epstein-Barr virus, also known as mono, or the “kissing disease”.
- Environmental toxins such as pollution from cars and planes or chemical pesticides used on food.
- Food allergies – particularly grains and gluten
- Foods that are neurotoxins which are poisonous substances that disrupt the normal function of nerve cells, such as monosodium glutamate (MSG). Be aware, yeast extract is one of the hidden labels for MSG. Fluoride added to water is also a neurotoxin. Iodine is needed by the thyroid, but when drinking water with fluoride, it gets kicked out. Aspartame is also a neurotoxin typically added to diet sodas such as Coke, Fanta etc..
- Increased exposure to the cold, as it makes the thyroid work harder
- Suppressed emotions. The throat chakra is located at the thyroid area. If out of balance it may be connected to the inability to speak out or communicate well.
- Accidents or injuries to the neck, such as whiplash.
- On the pill, HRT or steroids
- Excess vitamin A, excess zinc supplementation
- Dental x-rays (make sure you have a protective apron to cover your throat)
- Emotional, physical, and chemical stress will shut down thyroxin production. Stress will also deplete your vitamins and minerals in the body.
- Blood sugar dysregulation
- Heavy metal toxicity. For example, these are from cigarette smoking, eating food out of tins, cooking with aluminium pots or foil, eating fish, drinking water from old lead pipes.
Methods of balancing the thyroid using a holistic approach
1. Meditation or other forms of relaxation such as walking in nature, light exercise such as tai chi or yoga will help stimulate thyroxin production naturally. When you are under stress, thyroxin production levels drop, and cortisol levels rise, in an attempt to reduce the stress and reduce inflammation.
Meditation is usually best when done upon waking and before going to bed as this seems to work for people with busy schedules!
Do whatever works best for you. If I am lying down, I usually just imagine and feel energy going from my head, slowly all the way down to my feet, and then back up to my head again, and I continue this way until I reach a vibrational state in which the energy moves up and down by itself.
If I am sitting, I usually become aware of the area of my third eye and concentrate on that one spot for about 15 to 30 minutes.
2. Dry massage the thyroid area. This helps stimulate the circulation to the thyroid.
3. Reflexology points for the thyroid.
Reflexology is a powerful therapy which enhances circulation to the parts of the body by stimulating the reflexes in the feet. Firm pressure must be applied in order to be effective. You can stimulate these points whilst watching a movie or some TV for at least 15-20 minutes, daily, until the tender points have been reduced.
When you encounter a tender point, this means that the area is congested. Stimulating the sore points enhance the circulation.
Work across the neck of the big toe in all directions. Next work on the bottom of the foot, again on the neck of the big toe in all directions. Find the ball of the foot, directly beneath the neck of the big toe, and work around the ball. These are all the points for the thyroid and you must work on both feet.
4. Eat a balanced, healthy diet for you. The debate on what diet is best for us is never-ending.
The truth is, we are all biochemically different. What is one man’s medicine is another man’s poison.
There are, of course, foods that we absolutely know across the board is not good, and never will be good for us. The ones to eliminate from the diet are:
wheat, dairy, refined sugar, and table salt
It’s very easy to eat bad nowadays. So when someone says to you, everything in moderation, I’m afraid this doesn’t really apply now.
As a general rule, eat everything as fresh as possible non-processed, and eat Non-GMO, organic foods.
Pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and hormones that are put into our food nowadays is a crime and affects our health negatively and it builds up bit by bit. That’s why we don’t notice any issues, to begin with, but further down the line, health problems will show up, and you may not necessarily connect it to the inorganic foods, amongst other things that impact health.
Instead of wheat, go gluten-free as a stepping stone, but try not to rely on it too much. You are better off with rye bread as it contains a smaller amount of gluten and it is an older grain, meaning it has not been hybridized over centuries like wheat has. In any case, intend on eliminating wheat and similar carbohydrates.
Instead of dairy milk, use almond, oat milk or other nut milk. Use oil instead of butter. The alternative to cheese is vegan cheese but it is processed, but you can use this as a stepping stone to come off it altogether.
Instead of table salt, better to use Himalayan or good quality sea salt. Do not use too much.
You are welcome to join the Equilibrium Recipes Facebook Page where I add recipes that I make on a regular basis, which are meat, dairy, refined sugar, egg and gluten-free! Here is the link: Equilibrium Recipes
Medical Medium states that the following foods target the thyroid and assist with healing:
5. Do the heavy metal detox for 1 month
According to Anthony William, Medical Medium, heavy metals are fuel for bacteria and viruses, which contribute to thyroid problems. Eliminate the food, and you eliminate the pathogens!
The most effective way to eliminate heavy metals uses 5 ingredients that must be ingested within a 24 hour period as they all work synergistically.
I have this for my breakfast as it’s just easier, and very tasty too!
I recommend having this as part of your breakfast 15-20 minutes after drinking warm water with lemon.
Blend all ingredients together in a blender with either a cup of water, orange juice, apple juice or prune juice. You may add a banana, mango, raw honey or an apple to it.
6. Expression and communication
Not the easiest thing to do, but if you’re bottling up feelings then it translates to stuck energy.
Emotion equals energy in motion, so in order for it to move, you need to do something about it.
That stuck energy can sit in the throat chakra and there are a number of ways to move it, which include, singing, writing a letter, going to see a psychologist, tapping (EFT or MTT), various therapies such as reiki and kinesiology.
Ultimately, speaking honestly to the person who needs to hear it coming from a place of compassion and understanding is, in my opinion, one of the most effective ways to shift stuck throat energy and to move on.
7. Supplements that can help balance the thyroid
In my opinion, I recommend being tested using kinesiology muscle testing, as it will be the body’s own muscle strengthening that determines the right supplement to take.
However here are a few that can assist, and if you don’t want to be tested with kinesiology, I recommend that you research into the supplement more and ask your Doctor.
- Dulse seaweed. A natural source of iodine needed for thyroid function. You can buy in natural dried form, add to salads, soups, heavy metal detox, or buy in supplement form.
- Zinc – usually deficient in people. Necessary to produce T4 and the conversion to T3.
- Magnesium – typically deficient in people. This will help with sleep, and give adrenal support, reducing stress.
- Probiotics and prebiotics to assist in healthy gut flora
- Selenium – needed to convert T4 to T3. It also boosts the immune system and is an antioxidant.
- Dong Quai – will help balance estrogen levels, as high levels will block the thyroid from functioning.
8. Get enough sleep/rest
Sleep is needed for the body to rejuvenate and repair itself. If you are finding it hard to sleep, take some steps such as:
Turning off all electrical devices and keeping the phone off and away from the head.
Supplement with magnesium, or calming herbs such as valerian, hops, and passionflower.
Avoid exposure to blue light (TV, mobile) 1 hour before bedtime.
Meditate, or listen to something relaxing.
Avoid discussions, arguments at night!
9. Neurovascular holding points to stimulate thyroid circulation and energy balancing
10. Use a good water filter to eliminate chemicals that affect the health of your thyroid
As mentioned above in the healthy eating section, there are chemicals, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides etc… that affect your thyroid function.
Typical chemicals used in water are:
Buy a really good quality water filter, and perhaps get a filter for the whole house. A shower filter is also good to get.
Get a fluoride free-toothpaste.
When you get new furniture, carpets and things for your house that would be chemically treated, make sure to keep the windows of your house open for a few days for the fumes to go.
Dr. Robert Sellig
Dr. Eric Berg