Depends who you ask.
This question comes up time and time again. Keep reading for my answer.
When your thyroid becomes underactive, you may feel tired, flat, notice the kilos creeping up, feel cold all the time (even with 5+ layers on!), dry skin which is beginning to look like sand paper, hair loss; clumps of hair coming out in the shower, hair all over the floor after you brush it, notice digestive changes and other things that make you feel *blah*.
You know your body and despite being told ‘your bloods tests are fine’ you know it isn’t.
What does the Thyroid actually do?
It is a small, butterfly-shaped organ that sits in the front part of your neck.
It’s responsible for producing 2 hormones, T3 and T4, which are crucial for:
- Heart rate
- Temperature regulation
- Skin, hair, nail growth
- Ensuring every cell in your body has the energy it needs to function
If these feel-good hormones aren’t produced sufficiently, symptoms occur as a way to let you know something isn’t right.
In Hypothyroidism, your body isn’t producing enough thyroid hormones because of an issue within the thyroid itself.
Hashimoto's Thyroiditis is different, as the issue stems from the immune system mistakenly attacking the thyroid gland, making it unable to sufficiently create and circulate T3 and T4. This means Hashimoto’s can actually cause Hypothyroidism.
Other causes include nutrient deficiencies, medications, viral conditions and malabsorption disorders, e.g. coeliac disease, and pituitary gland disorders.
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Can you have thyroid problems with normal test results?
The current standard tests are not sufficient. TSH is the only marker tested. For the BEST understanding of its function, these tests need to be included:
- Thyroid autoantibodies (to rule out or confirm autoimmunity involvement)
The problem with just testing TSH is that it can be *within range* (that’s when you are told ‘your thyroid is fine’) but the other thyroid hormones may be out of range. This won’t be discovered because it is not tested.
And this isn’t just me saying this, a paper from Hoermann et al (2017) states ‘TSH cannot be readily interpreted as a sensitive mirror image of thyroid function’
Here is an example from a client of mine:
With any condition the naturopathic approach ensures that the whole body is taken into account.
A full thyroid panel blood test can be arranged and I consider ALL the possible causes (read the causes HERE).
When it comes to optimal health, it’s not a one size fits all approach, your health history, current symptoms, diet and lifestyle are all taken into account. As a result, your treatment is individualised just for YOU.
If you suspect your thyroid is playing a role in your health and not in a good way, let’s talk about it.
LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW THE THYROID EFFECTS YOUR HEALTH