Vitamin D And Your Thyroid
Vitamin D plays an important role in your immune function and low levels are linked to autoimmune thyroid disorders.
While your body is able to make all the vitamin D you need, it needs enough sunlight to do this. So during autumn and winter, its common for your vitamin D levels to drop putting you at risk of developing a deficiency.
If youre concerned youre not getting enough, you can test your vitamin D levels with a personalised home blood test. Or you can speak to a health professional about a supplement. Public Health England advises that everyone should consider taking a 10 mcg daily vitamin D supplement from October to March.
Healing Foods That Are Good For Your Thyroid
Eat more of these nutrient-dense power foods to feed and nourish your thyroid.
Thyroid problems are all too common in the U.S. In fact, about 20 million Americans have some form of thyroid disease, with 60 percent of those being unaware of their condition.
If youre dealing with an over or underactive thyroid, there are several nutrient-dense foods that can help support that butterfly-shaped gland. Foods with magnesium, iodine, zinc, vitamin D, and other vitamins and minerals can help synthesize and balance thyroid hormones, while also filling in common deficiencies associated with thyroid problems.
Are you struggling with a Thyroid condition? Weve created a FREE guide that shows you how you can heal your thyroid.
In addition, most of these foods are nutrient-dense, meaning they contain an abundance of nutrients per calorie. Since consuming a wide variety of nutrients is essential for hormone balance, this creates a foundation of proper nutrition to support thyroid health.
In short, you cant go wrong by choosing to fill your plate with several of these natural goodies!
Be sure to eat many of these thyroid-friendly foods on a weekly basis. Some, like eggs, berries, and greens, can even be eaten daily. Otherwise, you may be deficient in key nutrients that develop thyroid disorders in the first place.
Natures Wellness Thyroid Support
Natures way Thyroid Support contains an all-natural blend of minerals, vitamins, amino acids and herbs that are thought to be essential for thyroid hormone production.
It has a fairly well-balanced vitamin, mineral, and herbal extract profile, and while its not the most versatile, highest-dose, or cutting-edge thyroid supplement, its certainly effective for many people.
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About Dr Josh Redd Chiropractic Physician Utah Arizona New Mexico Functional Medicine
Dr. Joshua J. Redd, DC, MS, DABFM, DAAIM, author of The Truth About Low Thyroid: Stories of Hope and Healing for Those Suffering With Hashimotos Low Thyroid Disease, is a chiropractic physician and the founder of RedRiver Health and Wellness Center with practices in Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico. He sees patients from around the world who suffer from challenging thyroid disorders, Hashimotos disease, and other autoimmune conditions. In addition to his chiropractic degree, Dr. Redd has a BS in Health and Wellness, a BS in Anatomy, and a MS in Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine. He speaks across the nation, teaching physicians about functional blood chemistry, low thyroid, Hashimotos, and autoimmunity. You can join his Facebook page here.
Vitamin A And Hypothyroidism
You may not know this, but thyroid hormone and vitamin A have an important relationship.
Yet, most hypothyroidism sufferers are deficient in Vitamin A.
And this is a major problem for your thyroid health.
Thyroid hormone and Vitamin A work together synergistically to support your thyroid health.
Both are required to convert your cholesterol into all of your thyroid-protective youth hormones.
Simply put, being deficient in Vitamin A prevents you from being able to use thyroid hormone.
So, it wont matter how much thyroid medication you use, without adequate Vitamin A your thyroid medication wont help much.
And the more thyroid medication you use, the greater your need for Vitamin A.
Want to see just how necessary and power Vitamin A is for your thyroid health?
Take a look at this 2012 study published by the Journal of the American College of Nutrition. It shows just how effective Vitamin A is for treating subclinical hypothyroidism.
The effect of vitamin A supplementation on thyroid function in premenopausal women.
Vitamin A caused a significant reduction in serum TSH concentrations in obese and nonobese groups. Serum T3 concentrations also increased in both obese and nonobese vitamin A-treated groups . Serum T4 decreased in all 3 groups after treatment.
This study looked at the response of thyroid function to Vitamin A supplementation in pre-menopausal women.
Yet, understanding these results is important as well.
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Supplements For Thyroid Health: 10 Natural Options
Dietary supplements for thyroid health can address underlying nutrient deficiencies, stress, and hormonal imbalances, all of which can be root causes of a thyroid disorder.
Approaching hypothyroidism with supplements, in addition to lifestyle changes, can often help people to avoid the need for medications in the future.
Well talk about diagnosing the different root causes of thyroid disorders later in this article. Or you can check out this post about diagnosing primary hypothyroidism. Spoiler: Our blood tests measure more than just TSH thyroid hormone levels to determine if you have a healthy thyroid.
Note: Its critical not to confuse hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. Hypothyroidism describes an underactive thyroid. Hyperthyroidism is when your thyroid is overactive. Each condition features different symptoms, but both can be caused by different autoimmune issues.
In this article, well clarify which condition each supplement is known to address. In some cases, its both!
Healths Harmony Thyroid Support
Healths Harmony makes a pretty comprehensive thyroid supplement that combines iodine with a range of trace minerals that support thyroid function.
These include the usual suspects: zinc, copper, and selenium, as well as some nice extras like manganese and magnesium. It also has some herbal compounds, like ashwagandha and black pepper extract for better bioavailability, but the main focus is on the mineral ingredients.
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Natural Vs Synthetic Treatments
There are both natural and synthetic options to balance the thyroid. We typically recommend natural thyroid supplements as part of an integrative approach to health, rather than starting with prescription medications.
The term synthetic thyroid treatments typically refers to levothyroxine synthesized T4 that looks and acts like the T4 made in your thyroid gland. To avoid confusion, know that levothyroxine is a thyroid medication, though some incorrectly call it a synthetic thyroid supplement.
What is the difference between natural and synthetic thyroid treatments? Synthetic thyroid treatments are man-made and must be prescribed by a doctor. Natural supplements are found in nature and may be taken without the advice of a physician .
Hypothyroidism Can Cause Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency are quite similar to symptoms of hypothyroidism, which is why it is usually overlooked.
A hypothyroid person who experiences symptoms linked with vitamin B12 deficiency can assume he/she is experiencing those unfortunate scenarios due to their condition and vice versa.
Hashimotos thyroiditis, the most common cause of hypothyroidism, can induce intestinal damage that affects the bodys ability to absorb this vitamin. As a result, a person with
Hashimotos who consumes sufficient amount of this micronutrient can still experience symptoms of deficiency because his/her body didnt absorb the vitamin adequately.
A solution to this problem is addressing the thyroid problem in order to enhance absorption of vitamin B12.
Previous research investigated the association between hypothyroidism and high homocysteine levels. Homocysteine is an amino acid and a breakdown product of protein metabolism that increases the risk of heart disease and stroke when present in high concentrations.
The study included 14 hypothyroid patients who were diagnosed with hyperhomocysteinemia, abnormally high homocysteine levels. Patients received a treatment with l-thyroxine .
Scientists discovered that homocysteine levels returned to normal values as hypothyroidism was resolved. This finding led to a conclusion that hyperhomocysteinemia is caused by hypothyroidism and it is possible to manage the condition successfully.
Why is this related to vitamin B12?
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Top Six Vitamins For Hypothyroidism
âAs one of the most abundant minerals in the human body, and on earth, magnesium plays a critical role in some of our most vital functions including blood pressure, blood glucose metabolism, digestion, muscle and nerve functions, and even helps us sleep. Also, magnesium is responsible for over 300 enzyme reactions involved with protein synthesis. In many ways, magnesium is seen as a cure-all mineral in that it benefits every system in our body.
Magnesium helps improve symptoms often associated with hypothyroidism such as insomnia, fatigue, constipation, high blood pressure, and migraine headaches. Furthermore, magnesium plays an essential role in the conversion of T4 into T3, which can improve thyroid hormone function throughout the body.
Also known as retinol, vitamin A is a fat-soluble organic compound that plays a role in vision, the immune system, reproduction, and cellular communication. One study found that a 4-month trial of vitamin A reduced serum TSH levels in participants. By modulating TSH levels, vitamin A can also support the pituitary gland and prevent enlargement of the thyroid gland. Furthermore, Vitamin A may reduce your risk for autoimmune processes such as Hashimotoâs thyroiditis.
How To Learn If You Have Hashimotos Low Thyroid
Many patients are not diagnosed with hypothyroidism or Hashimotos until after several years and going through several doctors. It is a demoralizing journey richly illustrated in my book The Truth About Low Thyroid: Stories of Hope and Healing for Those Suffering With Hashimotos Low Thyroid Disease, through real-life stories from patients in my practice. Managing Hashimotos goes far beyond using thyroid medication as you must work to stop the immune system from attacking the thyroid. For more information on identifying and managing Hashimotos low thyroid, contact my office.
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Foods That Improve Thyroid Function
Is your thyroid functioning properly? Thyroid hormones are essential as they regulate energy levels, metabolism, body temperature, mood, heart rate, and blood pressure.
Herbs For Your Thyroid
Today 27 million Americans have thyroid disease, and about 13 million of them are undiagnosed. Does the hair on your eyebrow thin-out from the middle to the end? Have you experienced thinning or hair loss? Do you have cold hands and feet and dry skin? These are some of the symptoms of hypothyroidism one condition that can affect your thyroid gland.
Thyroid problems occur seven times more often in women than men and with chances increasing after childbirth and during menopause.
Your thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located in your neck below your Adams apple. It works like the gas pedal for your metabolism and also regulates your weight, energy, gastrointestinal health, nervous system and hormone balance. It produces two important hormones:
Is the more active of your thyroid hormones, and is derived from T4 by a metabolic conversion that happens in your gut and liver. It is considered the Queen of thyroid hormones.
This is produced by your thyroid gland when it binds with iodine. It is mostly inactive hormone but gets converted to the more active T3.
Together T3 and T4 thyroid hormones impact your:
- Metabolism including energy production, fat burning, and absorption of nutrients and supplements.
- Body temperature which in turn affects many chemical reactions
- Heart rate
- Bone strength
The most common conditions are:
Powerful Plants for Thyroid Support
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Recommended Daily Intake Of Vitamin B12
As mentioned throughout this post, sufficient levels of vitamin B12 are crucial for proper functioning of the entire body, including your thyroid gland. Taking supplements or foods containing this vitamin isnt enough you have to meet daily requirements. But, how much do you need on a daily basis? According to the National Institutes of Health, the recommended daily intake of vitamin B12 is:
- 0-6 months: 0.4 mcg
Since major sources of vitamin B12 are meat-based vegans and vegetarians obtain daily amounts through the intake of supplements.
If youre considering using supplements to improve thyroid health, it is always a good idea to check with your doctor first. We also have a guide to different kinds of thyroid supplements on this website , ranked based on the effectiveness of the thyroid supplement.
Thyroid Supplements Might Have Actual Thyroid Hormones
It isnt possible to know if a supplement contains thyroid hormones from reading the label, but a 2013 study published in the journal Thyroid found that nine out of 10 supplements marketed for thyroid health and support contained real hormones. Four of those that tested positive listed the ingredient bovine thyroid tissue, which might naturally contain hormones. But five supplements that tested positive listed only herbal ingredients, such as ashwagandha, guggul, and Coleus forskohlii. Since plants cannot produce the hormones the researchers found, thyroid hormones from an animal or synthetic source must have been deliberately added to these supplements, says Consumer Reports senior scientist Michael Hansen, Ph.D.
That is concerning because healthy thyroid hormone levels are very precise and taking supplements that contain these hormones can alter those levels in unpredictable ways. Thyroid hormone levels even slightly above or below where they should be can lead to health complications, Lipman says. For example, taking more thyroxine than you need can cause erratic heart beats and bone thinning.
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Vitamin B12 Brief Overview
Lets start with a simple overview to get to know this vitamin a little bit better.
Vitamin B12, whose formal name is Cobalamin, is just one of eight B complex vitamins.
Generally, B complex vitamins help the body convert carbohydrates into glucose or fuel for energy.
These vitamins also help the body use proteins and fats. As you are already aware, all vitamins from B complex are vital for overall health and wellbeing.
Vitamin B12 is water-soluble. Basically, the vitamin dissolves in water and then travels through the bloodstream in order to deliver its health benefits.
This micronutrient is particularly important for maintaining nerve cells health and functioning. Vitamin B12 also participates in production of genetic material i.e. DNA and RNA.
Together with vitamin B9 , vitamin B12 works to improve efficacy and functioning of iron and to produce red blood cells.
Functioning of the brain and nervous system and metabolism of every cell in your body require sufficient levels of vitamin B12.
While your body produces millions of red blood cells every minute, they cannot function adequately or multiply without this vitamin. Since cobalamin has a significant influence on our entire body, does it also play a role in thyroid health?
How Much Vitamin E You Need
Since some problems may occur with too much vitamin E supplementation, it is essential to know how much of this vitamin your body needs daily.
Healthy men and women are advised to consume a minimum of 15mg vitamin E on a daily bases, which equals 22.4IU.
It is, however, usually safe to consume more than 15mg vitamin E daily for additional benefits, but the upper intake limit should never be exceeded. For healthy adults over the age of 19, an upper intake limit of 1,000mg vitamin E per day is advised, which equals 1,500IU10.
Thyroid Supplements Can Hinder Treatment For A Thyroid Condition
Thyroid problems can be diagnosed easily through blood tests, but taking supplements that can alter the level of thyroid hormones in your blood can mask thyroid issues. And because supplements arent regulated the same way drugs are, they can contain varying amounts of active ingredients. If your doctor cant establish how much thyroid hormone your body needs, he cant prescribe the correct amount, and that can cause health problems, Lipman says.
The Council for Responsible Nutrition, a trade association that represents the dietary supplement industry, acknowledges that thyroid supplements can interact with prescription medications. And, says Duffy MacKay, N.D., CRNs senior vice president for science and regulatory affairs, It is important to talk to your doctor before starting thyroid supplements.
Yet Stephanie Lee, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Thyroid Health Center at Boston Medical Center and a spokeswoman for the Endocrine Society says a well-informed physician would never advise a patient to purchase an over-the-counter thyroid support supplement. If the thyroid functions were abnormal, we would prescribe the FDA-approved medication because, among other issues, theres no evidence that thyroid support products improve thyroid function, and they can cause health complications and confuse a diagnosis, Lee says.
Vitamin B12 And Hypothyroidism
Before we move on, if you see a term or phrase that you dont really understand, check out our frequency asked questions series found on Common Thyroid Questions and Answers.
OK, back to the topic.
Many hypothyroid patients are deficient in some vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B12.
One study enrolled 116 hypothyroid patients who were evaluated for signs and symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency.
Scientists discovered that 46 or 39.6% participants had low levels of this micronutrient.
The prevalence of vitamin B12 deficiency was equal in both men and women.
Based on the discovery that about 40% of hypothyroid patients are deficient in this vitamin, scientists emphasized the importance of screening people with hypothyroidism for vitamin B12 levels. Replacement of vitamin B12 leads to improvement of symptoms patients experience.
In addition, evidence shows that pernicious anemia affects hypothyroid patients 20 times more frequently than other people. Pernicious anemia is a condition that occurs when the body doesnt absorb sufficient amount of cobalamin.
This form of anemia is called pernicious due to the fact it was considered a deadly disease back in time. The primary reason why pernicious anemia was deadly in the past was due to the lack of adequate treatment.
Nowadays, it is possible to treat and manage this condition with vitamin B12 injections and supplements.
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