The thyroid Symptoms and adrenal glands (those producing cortisol) are the key regulators of the body. If the Thyroid and Cortisol levels are not right, the rest of the body will NOT function well. This is why these central hormones must be treated along with Estrogen, Progesterone, Testosterone, & Human Growth Hormone.
Many patients, especially women in their 30’s & 40’s, are diagnosed with Hypothyroidism or an underactive thyroid Symptoms by their primary care physician or endocrinologist. These doctors only diagnose cases of overt or severe deficiencies–we call it clinical Hypothyroidism. If a patient has some or all of the classical symptoms of Hypothyroidism, but the blood tests are within the normal range of values, no thyroid replacement therapy is given to relief these symptoms. So what happens to patients that test in the low side of “normal” &/or suffer hypothyroid symptoms? These patients have sub-clinical hypothyroidism. Estimates are that 20-40% of the population suffers in some way from sub-clinical hypothyroidism. We were taught in medical school to only treat those patients with overt thyroid deficiencies; there was no such thing as “sub-clinical” hypothyroidism. The philosophy was: patients are deficient or not, everything else in the middle is perfectly normal. With the advent of Anti-Aging Medicine, everybody is treated to create optimal balance of hormones & to obtain the hormonal levels of our youth. Be it sub-clinical or clinical hypothyroidism, severe or mild deficiency, patients do not have to endure hypothyroid symptoms and the negative effects these cause in the body and their hormones.
What are the symptoms of Hypothyroidism or an underactive thyroid?
A “sluggish” thyroid can cause a range of symptoms from cold hands & feet, chronic fatigue, hair loss/thinning, low libido, and depression to weight gain and inability to lose weight…in short, symptoms of slow metabolism. Also, pale/leathery skin, stiff joints, atherosclerosis, easy bruising, muscle cramps, persistent low back pain, mental sluggishness, emotional instability with crying spells, temper tantrums, mood swings, and an increased susceptibility to colds, viruses, & respiratory illnesses.
How does an underactive thyroid affect the other hormones in the body?
Because hormones are mutually-dependent, a deficiency of one can create excesses of another, and vice versa, with numerous possibilities for imbalance and unhealthy symptoms. Imbalances of estrogen, progesterone, and cortisol are linked to low thyroid. 80% of low thyroid patients have low cortisol or “Adrenal Fatigue” and vice versa. Many studies have found that Human Growth Hormone (hGH) levels are very low in Hypothyroid patients and when hGH is replaced in these people, the thyroid is usually normalized. Low Testosterone levels are also found in Hypothyroid patients (especially men) and Testosterone replacement therapy significantly improves their thyroid function.
Why do patients with an underactive thyroid never feel “normal” again and experience residual symptoms?
Thyroid replacement therapy (especially synthetic versions like “Synthroid”, “Levothyroxine”, etc) improves some of the hypothyroid patient symptoms, but virtually everyone complains they are never the same person after having thyroid problems. This is because they are not completely treated! They may be treated for their thyroid deficiency, but all the other hormones are out of balance or in abnormal levels in the body. It is crucial to test ALL hormones and treat ALL hormonal imbalances at the same time to be able to get back to the peak of health.
How do I know if I have a “sluggish” or underactive thyroid?
If you answered yes to 2 or more of the symptoms in this questionnaire, you may benefit from natural thyroid supplementation.