The thyroid is one of the most important glands in your body as it is essentially its master regulator. It determines how much energy you use and is responsible for how fast you can burn calories and how easy it is for you to lose weight. It also controls many of your body’s essential mechanisms and can even influence your mood. If you don’t know much about your thyroid, here’s your chance to learn something new and be aware of some of the most common thyroid problems.
If you have hypothyroidism, it means your thyroid is under-functioning. This is often characterized by low metabolism and energy levels, so you might feel lethargic or struggle to maintain your weight even while eating the correct foods. This is the most common form of thyroid disease, and it can affect other bodily functions – especially if you are trying to get pregnant. Hypothyroidism can cause fertility problems and an increase in the risk of miscarriage, so you should definitely get your thyroid checked out if this is on the cards.
2. Women vs Men
Women are more likely to develop thyroid problems than men, especially in the first few months following pregnancy. Be aware of how you are feeling in these months, and look after any friends who have newborns as well, as their attention might be focused solely on their new arrival. However, thyroid issues are not exclusively female, so regardless of your gender, go and see a doctor if you think your thyroid might be playing up.
Much has been said about gluten recently, and it has been framed both positively and negatively. If you know you are sensitive to gluten and have been having issues with your metabolism, try to restrict your diet to non-gluten foods. Give this a try for a month or two to see if your thyroid antibodies and function return to normal levels.
Your thyroid creates two hormones – T3 and T4. T4 is the inactive form of T3, and so the body, when it is functioning properly, converts the correct amount of T4 to T3 in order for it to regulate your metabolism in the most efficient way possible. Thyroid problems can often occur when this conversion is disrupted or blocked altogether.
Iodine is important for proper thyroid function, but foods high in iodine usually do not make it into our stomachs. If you are concerned about your thyroid function, consider taking some iodine supplements, just to give yourself a little boost.
Thyroid problems can become quite serious and may affect your life in many different ways if left untreated. If you think your thyroid might not be working normally, do not try to self-diagnose. There are always options available, even if you live in remote areas. Contacting an after hours doctor service such as Doctor To You might be one such option on your list.
Have you had thyroid problems before? What sort of treatment worked for you? What would you recommend to others who may also have similar issues?