84 Burnett St Bundaberg

Thyroid Health

What you need to know about your thyroid

Your thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland which sits just below your voice box in your throat. Its main role is the production of thyroid hormones which then enter the blood stream and act on a variety of tissues and organs throughout the body.

Did you know that weight gain, fatigue, infertility, anxiety, constipation, depression, menstrual issues, loss of libido, insomnia, poor concentration, and heart palpitations could be signs of some form of thyroid dysfunction?

While there are other possible causes which need to be ruled out, thyroid disorders are a very common occurrence in women that visit Burnett House Natural Therapies. Trish our Naturopath sees many women with underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) or autoimmune thyroid conditions (Graves’ disease and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis).

Sometimes women present with an already diagnosed condition. They may be on medication (thyroxine) which may be helping their symptoms, but they are looking for  additional nutritional help with their symptoms.

Thyroid problems can affect both men and women although it is more common in women and occurrence seems to increase with age.

Autoimmune thyroid disorders like Hashimoto's disease or Graves' disease can present with similar symptoms but have a dysfunctional immune system at their base. Addressing the reasons for this autoimmunity and regulating the autoimmunity using nutritional and herbal treatments can help in this instance.

Signs and symptoms of poor thyroid health

Some of the more common symptoms include:

  • Fatigue and poor energy
  • Infertility
  • Weight gain
  • Constipation /Diarrhoea
  • Hair loss
  • Poor memory and cognition (brain fog)
  • Loss of libido
  • Low body temperature (less than 36.5degC)
  • Heart palpitations /increased heart rate and
  • Insomnia
  • Thyroid disease can result in an under or overactive thyroid and while some of the symptoms are, not surprisingly, opposite, some are quite similar.

So, why do we care about thyroid function anyway?

Your thyroid is responsible for and contributes to a number of vital processes in the body which keep us feeling great.

These can include:

  • Maintaining your basal metabolic rate (this is the amount of kilojoules you burn when you are at rest…a bit like how fast or slow your car idles)
  • Regulation of body temperature
  • Production of energy by stimulating the use of carbohydrates, fats and proteins
  • Excretion of cholesterol (to help regulate cholesterol levels)
  • Adrenal function and the release of adrenaline (therefore having an influence over heart rate and blood pressure)
  • Fertility, ovulation and normal growth and development. The amount of thyroid hormone circulating in your blood is generally tightly regulated but there are a variety of reasons why this can be disrupted. When things get out of sorts you can end up with a thyroid which is sluggish (underactive) or alternatively, a thyroid which is working a bit too hard (overactive) and you won't be feeling very good.

Potential causes of thyroid dysfunction

There are many steps in the production and use of thyroid hormones. Consequently, there are a number of opportunities for this finely-tuned system to not function properly. Some of the factors that may contribute to thyroid problems include:

  • Nutritional deficiencies or excesses in your diet
  • Problems with digestion or absorption of nutrients
  • Chemical exposure in particular to fluorine, chlorine, bromide (added as a fortifier to bread), pesticides, PCBs and other environmental toxins
  • Heavy metal exposure, especially mercury, cadmium and lead
  • Repeated stress – physical and emotional
  • Chronic infections and viruses
  • Certain food sensitivities like gluten intolerance
  • Some medications
  • Overactive immune system leading to autoimmune problems

By now, you have probably gathered that there are a lot of influences on your thyroid health.

Thyroid problems account for a significant part of Trish’s Naturopathic practice. What if you don’t have a diagnosed thyroid condition but you still feel terrible?

When you have a consultation with Trish, we look further into why your thyroid is technically still “working” although not working very well. As a health practitioner Trish is able to order  blood tests to measure all of the hormones involved in proper thyroid function as well as monitoring your basal body temperature and checking your Iodine status. A treatment plan individually suited to you can then begin, which incorporates diet, supplements and exercise that can help you on the road to proper thyroid function.

The world of thyroid health can be very complex and confusing and a bit daunting and that is where our Naturopath Trish at Burnett House Natural Therapies can help.
Your symptoms are real, even if your tests say everything is “normal” and it is possible to investigate further to work out what is causing your symptoms.

Call Us Now for an Appointment
Phone: (07) 4152 2372
© 2019 by Burnett House
84 Burnett St
Bundaberg South QLD 4670
ABN: 88 973 250 774
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