With Thyroid Awareness Week this week, i thought it was a great opportunity to highlight the importance of having a healthy thyroid and what you can to do if you find yourself with an over-active or under-active thyroid.
What is the Thyroid?
It is a gland positioned near your throat and it is part of the endocrine system (regulates hormonal regulation). The endocrine system works with the nervous system and the immune system to regulate various physiological processes in the body to maintain optimal health.
How can it be affected?
The most common and important impact on the thyroid gland is stress. Stress causes the increase of cortisol from the Adrenal Glands which sit on top of the kidneys. The adrenals are also part of the endocrine system. Over a period of an intense stressful time or perhaps a collection of stressful moments in a person's life the healthy functioning of the thyroid gland may be affected.
It is important to understand that each person has a point of weakness in their body and as a result stress will impact each of us differently.
Apart from stress there are various other factors known to impact healthy thyroid function such as a sedentary lifestyle, dietary factors and other illnesses.
If you suffer from the following symptoms, look into the health of your thyroid.
- Weight gain/loss
- Difficulty to losing weight
- Difficulty in gaining weight
- Menstrual irregularities
- Temperature regulation is affected (feeling hot or feeling cold or alternating hot and cold)
- Bowel movements are irregular and stools change from loose to difficulty to pass
- Hair loss
- Dry skin
- Go to you doctor and get your thyroid checked out
- If the results are within normal range this doesn't mean you have a healthy functioning thyroid, it only means disease hasn't manifested yet.
- So to deal with these symptoms a natural healthcare practitioner such as a Chinese medicine doctor or naturopath will be able to assist your body through advising diet and lifestyle factors to assist in the healthier functioning of your thyroid as well as herbal medicine to enhance a healthy thyroid gland.
- It is important to note that if you have thyroid disease you can still see a Chinese medicine practitioner and the like to assist the body to healthy even though you have been perhaps given medications such as Thyroxine