The thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland located in the base of the neck that plays an important role in regulating many functions: mood, weight, sexuality, etc. When it goes wrong, it causes many symptoms. Here’s how to identify some thyroid problems, differentiate the signs of hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism, and find the most appropriate treatments for your condition.
What is the role of the thyroid?
The thyroid releases hormones that regulate metabolism as well as certain bodily functions. When it does not work properly, it can trigger a series of symptoms that can sometimes be misdiagnosed. According to statistics, 1 in 20 people are affected by thyroid dysfunction (women are more exposed than men).
What is the difference between hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism?
The only difference between these two syndromes is the amount of hormones produced by the thyroid gland. Hypothyroidism means reduced activity of the thyroid gland that results in decreased production of thyroid hormones. This disorder slows the metabolism of the body. Conversely, hyperthyroidism is an increased activity of the thyroid gland that causes an increase in the level of thyroid hormones that circulate in the blood. Hyperthyroidism accelerates the metabolism of the body.
How to know which is your syndrome? Hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism?
The signs and symptoms of these two health disorders are related to the excess or insufficiency of thyroid hormone production, quite simply.
Hypothyroidism is characterized by the following signs: a lack of concentration, a constant desire for sleep, weight gain, dry skin, weight loss, dry hair, muscle aches and / or cramps, a phenomenon of water retention, a high sensitivity to cold.
Hyperthyroidism is characterized by the following signs: unexplained weight loss, increased heart rate, heat intolerance, insomnia, irritability, nervousness, anxiety, diarrhea, etc.
Goiter is the result of inflammation of the thyroid
Goitre is a swelling of the thyroid gland, which manifests itself as a larger or smaller bump in the throat. This is a common symptom of thyroid dysfunction. Iodine deficiency is one of the main causes of goitre.
What are the triggers for thyroid disorders?
Thyroid disorders are most often related to:
• Iodine deficiency
• An accumulation of metals in the body
• Chronic stress
• Toxin accumulation
Other factors of thyroid dysfunction are related to autoimmune diseases. Among the diseases that increase the production of bile: Graves’ disease, subacute thyroiditis or toxic thyroid adenoma that causes hyperthyroidism.
Other health factors that help reduce thyroid hormone production, such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, thyroid suppression, or excessive exposure to lithium iodide, can trigger hypothyroidism.
What are the ways to prevent thyroid dysfunction?
To have a healthy and healthy thyroid, a good metabolism combined with a healthy lifestyle are essential conditions.
If thyroid disease has already been diagnosed, you need to make some lifestyle changes to try and regulate the functioning of the gland to better live with your symptoms.
Here are some tips to help you:
Identify and treat the underlying causes
It is important to know how to recognize and treat the underlying causes of thyroid disorders: food allergies, dairy products, etc.
Improve your diet
A balanced and healthy diet can help you get the most out of your thyroid: foods rich in iodine, zinc, omega-3 fatty acids, selenium, etc. Try to eliminate refined flours, sugars, as well as processed foods.
To reduce your anxiety, adopt a comprehensive stress management program that will minimize the symptoms: yoga, daily meditation, breathing methods, walks, contact with nature.
Regular physical activity helps stimulate and improve thyroid function.
Some supplements to improve the thyroid
Some supplements can help you stimulate the thyroid, just as some foods that are rich in essential nutrients can improve its function. Promote the consumption of products rich in zinc and selenium such as oysters, shrimp, veal liver, lentils, wholemeal bread and egg yolk. You can consult a naturopath or a homeopathic doctor to find out which ones are best for you.
Treat the thyroid with heat
To eliminate toxins that inhibit the functioning of the thyroid, heat can help. Privilege saunas, hammams …
To help your thyroid (case of hypothyroidism), taking hormone replacement will supplement the thyroid hormones (the T4) or replace them when the gland stops producing. This is a “replacement” therapy, ask your doctor for advice on which treatment / dosage is best for you.