Hyperthyroidism

HyperthyroidismWhat is Hyperthyroidism?

Hyperthyroidism is a condition that is brought about by too much secretion of the thyroid hormones.

 

The thyroid gland is responsible for the secretion of these hormones.

 

When this happens, the basal metabolic rate, which refers to the amount of calories that the body is using to run cellular processes, is also increased thereby altering the regular body functions.

 

 

What Causes Hyperthyroidism?

There are different causes of hyperthyroidism. They are the following:

  • Autoimmune problems. When the autoimmune system no longer functions properly and starts attacking the thyroid receptors, the latter malfunctions and is stimulated to produce excessive thyroid hormones.
  • Graves’ disease
  • Tumours. This could form on the thyroid which would result to the stimulation of the thyroid hormone.
  • Inflammation of the thyroid
  • Thyroid adenoma
  • Excessive intake of kelp, seaweed or iodine
  • Taking thyroid hormones excessively
  • Infection of the thyroid
  • Goitre

 

Diagnosis, Signs and Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism

The following are the signs and symptoms when one is suffering from hyperthyroidism:

  • Weakness
  • Protruding eyes. This is also known as exophthalmia.
  • Having a swollen area around the neck
  • Experiencing changes in bowel activity
  • Insomnia
  • Hair loss
  • Light sensitivity
  • Splitting of nails
  • Losing weight even if one eats a lot
  • Fatigue
  • Nervousness and restlessness
  • Irritability
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart palpitations
  • Sweating excessively
  • Thin hair
  • Blinking frequently
  • Fine muscle tremors
  • Osteoporosis
  • Menstrual cycle changes

 

Remedies, Treatment and Cure for Hyperthyroidism

Instead of treating this condition per se, naturopaths provide support to the thyroid gland through proper nutrition and some helpful hints.

Helpful Lifestyle Suggestions

  • Stop smoking. Cigarettes contain nicotine, which increases the amount of toxic substance in the body.
  • Avoid alcohol too.

Exercise

  • Even if the metabolic rate increased due to hyperthyroidism, gentle exercises could always help alleviating insomnia, nervousness and stress. You can try doing yoga or Pilates, whichever form of exercise suits you the best.

Diet for Hyperthyroidism (What to eat and what not to eat)

  • Avoid seaweeds, kelp and iodised salt.
  • Minimise foods that contain saturated fats. You have to avoid margarine, cooking oils, butter, and nut butters.
  • Also avoid salt and sugar
  • Eat foods that have high thiourea content, which reduces thyroid function. Foods that are high in thiourea are peaches, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, kale, mustard greens, peanuts, pears, spinach strawberries, rutabaga, apples, almonds, walnuts and soy and turnips. As much as possible eat these foods raw because some of these foods are goitrogenic, wherein their thiourea content gets deactivated when cooked.
  • Avoid stimulants like caffeine which are found in tea and coffee.
  • Drink distilled water. Filtered water is also ideal.

Vitamins, Minerals and Herbs for Hyperthyroidism

  • Antioxidant formulas. These help in protecting the body from free radicals, which cause damage to the tissue.
  • Calcium (1500mg, taken after meals at night). This helps in increasing the bone density and also prevents bone loss.
  • Coenzyme Q10 (150mg-300mg). This protects the heart since hyperthyroidism can cause undue stress on the cardiovascular system.
  • Lemon balm. This helps in supporting hyperthyroid medical treatment. This could assist PMS insomnia, agitation and indigestion brought about by anxiety. Just remember to see your herbalist and to take this under supervision since improper or large doses could be dangerous to health too.
  • Hawthorn (1.5g-3g dried flower/leaf/berry daily). This is beneficial for angina, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. This is a known antioxidant and could always protect the heart.
  • Passionflower (4g-8g dried herb). This herb has the character to relax the muscles and could help in reducing stress.
  • Milk thistle (9g-10g dried seeds daily). This helps in improving the metabolism of the thyroid hormones. It also assists in the detoxification process of the liver and also has natural antioxidants.
  • Chinese foxglove (20g-30g uncured root daily). This helps in supporting the adrenal glands. Remember to avoid taking this herb in high doses if you are suffering from high blood pressure.
  • Gentian (600mg-2g). This can help in increasing the appetite for those who do not feel like eating. Remember to take this an hour before mealtime so as to stimulate the appetite during meals.
  • Bugleweed. This is known to help in activating thyroid antibodies. See an herbalist or naturopath before taking this herb.
  • Red clover, Calendula, and Pokeroot could help those suffering from an enlarged thyroid gland. Make sure to see a naturopath before taking this herb.

 

 

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