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Is It Your Thyroid? Understanding The Misunderstood Gland

Have you been noticing more of your friends, neighbors, and coworkers talking about their thyroids lately? I have.

The thyroid is one of those organs that people overlook, but it is incredibly important to the maintenance of your whole body. It’s also very fragile, so it’s important that we understand what it does, how it works, and how to take care of it.

What Is The Thyroid?

Your thyroid is a butterfly-shaped organ right below your larynx, on the front of your throat. It is only a couple of inches across, but it is linked to most of your other glands and organs. In fact, you could say it is the central command system for your whole endocrine system. The hormones produced in your thyroid direct and manage all the other hormone systems, as well as the operation of many of your organs. One of the hormones produced in your thyroid controls fat metabolism, controls your cholesterol levels, manages your insulin, cortisol, and the sex hormones, like estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone.

Too Little: Hypothyroidism

Keeping your thyroid hormones in balance is an important key to good health that most people have never heard of.

Hypothyroidism is when your thyroid is producing too little of the these hormones. This is probably the most common of the thyroid dysfunctions, and it is most common among women over age 60. People with hypothyroidism will typically experience symptoms like:

  • Feeling tired and lethargic most of the time.
  • Wearing out quickly in activities that don’t normally wear you out.
  • Falling asleep any time you sit down, even if you are otherwise well-rested.
  • Depression is sometimes a symptom of low thyroid hormone
  • Unexplained weight gain, or difficulty losing weight.
  • Hair loss – especially in women
  • Feeling cold all the time

It’s Not Easy To Diagnose

Hypothyroidism is not easy to self-diagnose, even if you recognize all of these symptoms, because the symptoms are common with other diseases. At the same time, the blood test your doctor will usually give you to detect it can be misleading because it only measures one of the markers of hypothyroidism. It’s usually best to visit with an endocrinologist, who usually has a more comprehensive blood test.

You might be at a slightly higher risk of hypothyroidism if you have:

  • Diabetes
  • Kidney disses
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Lupus or other autoimmune diseases
  • Chron’s disease
  • Ulcerative colitis

There are a few others, but they are less common. Again, your endocrinologist will be able to determine if your symptoms are indicative of hypothyroidism.

Too Much: Hyperthyroidism

If your thyroid is overproducing hormones, you will notice symptoms like:

  • Restlessness and difficulty sleeping
  • Irritability and emotional outbursts
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Irregular over pounding heartbeats
  • Irregular menstrual periods
  • Difficulty giving birth

Why Are Our Thyroids Acting Up?

There are several things going on in and around our bodies that are ruining our thyroids.

Iodine Deficiency

Last week, we talked about how the magnesium content has been depleted from our food. The same is true of the iodine content. Iodine is a powerful mineral that, like magnesium, affects nearly every organ in your body, from your pancreas and stomach to your brain and spinal cord, and even your skin, muscles, and breasts. It strengthens your immune system, manages your weight and metabolism, and plays a vital role in the development of children’s brains. It is also antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-parasitic. Many people take iodine supplements to protect themselves from EMF radiation in their homes. I’ve never read the research on that, so I can’t speak to it specifically, but it makes sense.

In short, iodine is incredibly important for your health.

Where Do We Get It?

Table salt.

And sometimes even table salt doesn’t have iodine.

The problem is that iodine doesn’t appear naturally in many foods, and very few people eat the raw sea plants that are high in iodine. An easier way to talk about iodine is how many things deplete iodine from our bodies:

Gluten

Gluten is inflammatory in many people’s bodies, causing leaky gut syndrome. As partially-digested food leeches into the bloodstream, your immune system attacks it like a virus. Your thyroid is often a casualty in this attack. If you know (or even suspect) that your body has a gluten sensitivity, get the grains, breads, and pastas out of your diet and see if you don’t start feeling better and having less pain within a few days. If you want to get really comprehensive about testing the sensitivities in your diet, call my office and let’s see if my 28-day detox plan is right for you. This is what it’s for.

Bromines

Bromines are a category of chemicals that are used in hundreds of different products you use every day, including plastics, pesticides, fire retardants, and some foods. If you like juice-flavored soft drinks (like Mountain Dew and Squirt), chances are you have come in contact with bromines. Strawberries are often sprayed with pesticides based on methyl bromine.

The short version of this story is that bromines have a similar molecular structure to iodine, so your body can’t tell the difference and accepts bromines in place of iodine. This is why we are seeing such a spike in cases of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, prostate cancer, and others that are linked to the endocrine system. It can mess with your mind, too. I suspect this is why some of the common pharmaceuticals have “psychiatric episodes” or something similar in their list of side effects.

The Problem With Bread

I believe that the massive uptick in cases of gluten intolerance and thyroid dysfunction is tied to recent changes in the way bread products are produced. To increase how much bread, pasta, and other goods bakeries can output, they have switched to quick-rising dough recipes with chemical “dough conditioners” that speed up the baking process. At the same time, farmers have been using herbicides like Roundup to increase their yields and accelerate the drying process when their grain is too damp to harvest. Bromines are present in both processes and leave traces in every bite. I’d love to see more people get back to baking their own bread, raising their own vegetables, and even raising their own chickens, full of the nutrients our grandparents enjoyed in their food, and free from the chemicals our industrial food complex uses to make food production “efficient.”

(Side note: if you are so busy that the idea of producing your own food seems crazy and antiquated to you, I would challenge you to ask yourself why you’ve let your life get so complex. Are the lifestyles we work so hard to pursue worth making ourselves subject to a food system that cares less and less about nutrition? Think about that.)

Radiation

One group of people who are starting to present in increasing numbers with massive health issues are the people who work for the TSA, especially the ones who operate the X-Ray security scanners. There is a reason your dentist puts a lead apron over you and leaves the room when she runs the X-Ray machine. It’s dangerous. I don’t like using X-Rays. If you are constantly exposed to high levels of radiation like this, your thyroid is in danger. It is highly sensitive to radiation.

But it starts at home. Your TV and computer monitors give off radiation. Wireless devices flood our homes with levels of radiation that would shock you. Wireless electric meters gives off radiation. The 5G systems that some cities are installing are so powerful that having one near your house is the equivalent to living in the TSA section of the airport full-time. Your Alexa gives off radiation.

Do you remember when the tobacco companies were sued for billions of dollars because it was proved that smoking caused cancer and they hid that research from the public? I think that within the next 3-5 years, the research on wireless exposure is going to go mainstream and we are going to see the same thing happen to the wireless companies, but 100 times bigger.

All that to say this: your thyroid doesn’t like radiation.

Local Water

I’ve talked about filtered water before. Chlorine in most municipal water systems is high enough to wash out a swimming pool and it is not filtered adequately before it reaches your kitchen sink unless you take action. Your body can’t handle it, but it is especially hard on your thyroid. Fluoride is a known neurotoxin, and I hope the people who approve its use in city water go to jail for all the lives they have destroyed. Go ahead and challenge me on this if you disagree. It’s poison.

Stress

We’ve talked here many times about stress and how unrelenting stress wears out your adrenal gland. Your adrenal gland is intimately tied to your thyroid. I’ve mentioned before how keeping the adrenal faucet open all the time burns your other organs like leaving an acid faucet on all the time. What I haven’t mentioned before is that your thyroid is the organ mostly closely attached to your adrenal glands, as well as the most fragile. When your adrenaline never lets up, it can burn out your thyroid. When your thyroid is weakened, it can’t manage your weight gain, high blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and so on. So stress is tied to adrenal fatigue, which is tied to thyroid burnout, which is tied to weight gain, elevated blood pressure, increased cholesterol, heart disease, stroke, and more.

What Can We Do To Protect Our Thyroids?

I believe knowledge is power. The more you know about the current condition of your body, the better the game plan you can build to improve your health. A bad diagnosis isn’t a death sentence – even if it is. With knowledge, you can make appropriate changes and turn the ship around. Get your thyroid tested by an endocrinologist if you have concerns – or even curiosity – about it.

Knowing what we know about how we got to this state of chronic thyroid dysfunction as a nation, we can take appropriate action to reverse it. Some of the best research I’ve seen recommends:

  • Eat organic, pesticide-free vegetables and free-range meats as much as possible to eliminate as much of the pesticides and bromines as possible.
  • Wash your vegetables thoroughly, to take that to the next level, because even organic food isn’t perfect.
  • Reduce your bread intake and avoid breads that use a bromine-based “dough conditioner.”
  • Take a daily iodine supplement (they’re tiny but powerful).
  • Increase your Vitamin C intake (which is a good idea anyway).
  • Use unrefined sea salt, which is also high in iodine.
  • I saw one article that recommended Epsom salt baths, which are well-known for their detoxifying properties, but I’ve never tried it. If you try it, let me know how it works for you.
  • Reduce your exposure to radiation. Shut off your wifi and cellular devices at night.
  • If you fly, opt out of the big bio-scanner. They have other options.
  • When you go to the dentist and they put the big apron over your chest, ask if they have a throat cover. Most do. Ask them to use it, to protect your thyroid.

Thyroid Is a Big Topic

This is another one of those topics that we can’t cover completely in one article, so I imagine we will come back to this from time to time. If you don’t already know someone who is worried about their thyroid, you will soon. With all the changes to radiation standards and food production methods, our thyroids are in real danger, and I believe we are going to see many more correct diagnoses of thyroid conditions.

In the meantime, we can make a difference by getting knowledge to our friends and family. Thank you for taking a few seconds right now to share this article on your favorite social media channel. You never know who might be having questions about this very topic right now.

“At the end of your FEELINGS is NOTHING. At the end of your PRINCIPLES is a PROMISE.”  — Eric Thomas

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