The Thyroid gland plays an important role in optimum health, and if it isn’t functioning properly, there are many negative symptoms that can arise. Unfortunately, thyroid problems are often misdiagnosed and can lead to a lifetime of medications and mismanagement. Improper thyroid function can lead to many of the following symptoms.
Morning headaches that fade
Hypersensitivity to cold
Itchy, dry skin
Low body temperature
We believe that proper bio-specific diagnosis and management can restore thyroid health and alleviate many of the symptoms associated with it. Our comprehensive approach discovers the underlying factors and offers bold solutions that will return you to your perfect health and your perfect weight.
THYROID RESTORATION VS. TREATMENT
Unfortunately, many healthcare professionals are confused about how to properly evaluate and treat the thyroid. This often results in individuals who chronically suffer with symptoms and who are left with no hope of restoring proper health. We believe that most thyroid health conditions can be dramatically improved if the proper testing and evaluation are done. Our comprehensive approach often allows us to restore your thyroid function vs. merely treating your symptoms.
UNDERSTANDING THYROID HEALTH
Your thyroid is a tiny gland that stretches over the area of the Adam’s apple and is shaped like a shield. The primary role of the thyroid is to act like a shield by setting the body’s speed limit.
If you’re cold, the thyroid steps on the gas to create more heat. If you’ve got a virus, the thyroid revs up the engine of your immune system. If your’re overly stressed from too many 18-hour days fueled by coffee and bagels, the thyroid hits the brakes so you don’t blow a gasket in the fast lane.
LIKE A THERMOSTAT
Your thyroid is very sensitive to small changes in your body and works like a thermostat.
In order for your thyroid to produce hormones (T4 & T3), it must receive a signal from your pituitary gland which is located in the brain. The pituitary receives its signals from the hypothalamus which is also in the brain. Together the hypothalamus, pituitary, and thyroid make up the HPT axis.
When your body demands that more thyroid hormone be made, the Hypothalamus must release a hormone called Thyroid Releasing Hormone (TRH) and send it to the pituitary gland. The Pituitary gland then releases Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) and sends it to the thyroid gland. Once the Thyroid is stimulated it will use Thyroid Peroxidase (TPO) and iodine to create your T4 & T3 hormones. (see picture)
As your cells utilize the new thyroid hormones and your body is no longer in need of any more, it will trigger the hypothalamus and pituitary to stop releasing TRH and TSH and therefore stop the production of thyroid hormone.
As you can see this is very similar to the thermostat you have in your home. When the temperature in your home increases past the desired temperature setting your thermostat will turn on your air conditioning unit to produce cool air. Once the desired temperature level is reached your thermostat will turn off the air conditioner. All day and all night the thermostat in your home regulates the temperature and keeps it at the perfect temperature that you desire– that is as long as all the parts are working.
THE REST OF THE STORY
When it comes to thyroid metabolism there are a few other key points to understand. As you know, the pituitary releases TSH that stimulates the thyroid to produce T4 and T3, but how much of each hormone it produces is an interesting fact. The thyroid primarily produces T4. In fact, it produces approximately 97% T4 and only 3% T3.
This is an interesting point to consider because the most "active" form of hormone, and the one your body prefers, is T3.
What this means is that somewhere in your body you must convert the large amount of "less active" T4 your thyroid makes into the "more active" T3 form your body needs.
60% of this conversion occurs in your liver, 20% in your gastrointestinal tract, and the other 20% is converted into a inactive form called reverse T3.
The body uses an enzyme called tetraidothyronine 5′ deiodinase which removes one molecule of iodine and converts T4 (4 iodine) into T3 (3 iodine). In addition, selenium is important to this process, as is, having a healthy gut flora with good bacteria in your gastrointestinal tract.
Once thyroid hormone is created, it must be shuttled throughout your body to cells that need it. It does this by binding onto a transport protein called thyroid-binding proteins. The thyroid-binding proteins shuttle the hormone to the cell site were it drops it off for the cell to use. The thyroid hormone must be unattached (become Free) in order for the body to use it.
Unfortunately, if you have too many or too little binding hormones it can greatly affect how your body is utilizing thyroid hormone. Too many and there is not enough Free T3 (active), too little there wont be enough shuttles to transfer the hormones around. In either case, your thyroid could be working completely normally but you would still suffer from thyroid symptoms.
WHAT IS CAUSING YOUR SYMPTOMS?
Now that you have a better picture of how your thyroid metabolism works you can use this information to determine “why” you may be having thyroid symptoms.
If you suffer from any of the symptoms listed above, then you have a thyroid that is not working properly. And if you are currently taking medication with these symptoms, your medication is not addressing the underlying cause of your thyroid condition.
The conventional medical approach to addressing your thyroid is to measure your TSH level. As you now know, this is actually a pituitary hormone and not a thyroid hormone. Simply measuring this level will provide you with a very incomplete picture of how your body is using thyroid hormone.
ASKING SMARTER QUESTIONS
A better approach is to evaluate all the moving parts of your thyroid system to see where the problem is occurring. A more complete line of questioning would include:
How much T4 is being produced?
How much T4 is being converted into T3?
How much of that T4 and T3 is bound and how much is Free?
How much reverse T3 is being made and inhibiting the use of T3?
Are there antibodies present that indicate an autoimmune reaction?
Is your liver functioning correctly to allow a T4 to T3 conversion?
How is the bacteria in your gastrointestinal tract and is it preventing conversion?
Do you have a selenium deficiency?
How well are adrenal glands working and are they contributing to your thyroid issues?
As you can see there are some very important questions to address when evaluating your thyroid health. Working with a healthcare professional that will take the time to answer these questions is essential if your desire is to regain your health again.
The good news is there are simple lab tests that can be done to answer all of these questions. This will provide you the answers that will allow you to take the necessary steps so your body will heal. Unfortunately, however, if these questions aren't answered you are stuck simply guessing about your thyroid health and often leads to unnecessary medication and ongoing symptoms.
READY FOR ANSWERS
Our BioSpecific Health Program utilizes the latest lab testing to thoroughly evaluate your thyroid gland including 9 different thyroid markers. This allows us to uncover the “root” cause of your thyroid symptoms and offer you solutions other practitioners may miss.
If you are tired of suffering and ready to regain your health, contact our office today!
To learn more about our unique program: Click HERE.