- 1 Thyroid anatomy and what it’s for
- 2 Symptoms, disorders, and pathologies: hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism
- 3 Medical statistics and proposals
- 4 The problem of false-positives
- 5 Factors that alter thyroid function
- 6 The proposals of natural medicine
- 7 Lazy thyroid herbs
- 8 Herbs against hyperthyroidism
- 9 Homeopathic remedies
- 10 Contraindications
Thyroid anatomy and what it’s for
The thyroid is an endocrine gland located at the front of the neck, in front of the trachea. Structurally, it is formed by two lobes joined on the midline by an isthm, which gives it a characteristic “butterfly” appearance (the wings correspond to the left and right lobes).
Despite its small size, the thyroid performs fundamental functions for our health: thyroid hormones control metabolic activities and are responsible for the proper functioning of most of the body’s cells. From the first weeks of life, the thyroid regulates neuropsychic development, body growth, metabolism, cardiovascular function, bone formation, and growth. Not only that: it is always this gland that influences mood tone, muscle strength, fertility, and more.
The tissue of the thyroid is organized in a high number of thyroid follicles, whose walls consist of a single layer of follicular cells (thyrocytes). Inside the follicles, there is a very viscous substance, the colloid, in which the synthesized hormones are accumulated and from it are released, depending on the needs of the organism. Finally, the parabolic cells, responsible for the production of calcitonin, a hormone that maintains the balance of calcium in the body, are found between the follicles.
Multivalent glands, the thyroid has many tasks: in addition to governing metabolism, it controls the activity of the heart, affects nerve excitability, stimulates skeletal growth, sexual maturation, and psychic development. As a result, his ailments can have serious effects on physical health.
Symptoms, disorders, and pathologies: hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism
The thyroid can be subjected to both functional disorders (thyroiditis) and real pathologies (thyroids).
- In hypothyroidism the thyroid gland does not produce a sufficient amount of thyroid hormones, causing chronic fatigue, constipation, dry skin, depression, abnormal fattening.
- In hyperthyroidism, the thyroid produces an excessive amount of thyroid hormones, with weight loss, tachycardia, sweating, nervousness with bursts of rage. The most common cause of hyperthyroidism is an autoimmune thyroid cell known as Basedow/Graves disease characterized by the presence in the blood of antibodies that stimulate the production of thyroid hormones and increased thyroid volume.
Medical statistics and proposals
According to the most recent statistics, thyroid disorders have been steadily increases in recent years: it is estimated that in the USA more than 20% of the population suffers from a clear prevalence of the female sex. This percentage rises to 33% in women over 60 years old.
There are essentially two medical responses to the problem: pharmacological – which consists of the administration of synthetic hormones – and surgical or radiological.
This type of approach, however, is proving increasingly unsatisfactory because the administration of hormones does not “cure” the causes of the malfunction of the gland, nor the immune imbalances of autoimmune thyroids, but “silences” it, replacing its natural secretions with an artificial substance that must be taken for life.
The problem of false-positives
Since the thyroid is an organ subject to functional oscillations throughout the day, linked to the phased development of metabolism, stress, anxiety, excitement and depression can alter the production of thyroid hormones both directly and indirectly, affecting the pituitary-hypothalamus axis and therefore both the production of TSH and, cascading, the production of thyroid hormones.
This means that the results of the analyses can be very different depending on the hours and circumstances in which they are carried out. We know, for example, that thyroid values are at a minimum in the early morning and fasting (just when blood is collected for analysis), and then up to the middle of the day.
In times of stress, then, the production of cortisol increases, which in addition to affecting the production of thyroid hormones, can trigger the production of autoantibodies. It is no coincidence that many autoimmune thyroids appear in girls between the age of 13 and 15 – with the bursting of sex hormones and in the midst of the brain “restructuring” phase that occupies the first part of adolescence – or in women after childbirth, and are largely transient.
Factors that alter thyroid function
Factors that can lead to the appearance of thyroiditis include viral infections, inflammation, and intoxication. The most important intoxicating factors are drugs such as lithium salts, anti-acid drugs (aluminum hydroxide), those against cholesterol, anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and numerous others, but also excessive intake of iodine (including that contained in algae such as Fucus) that can stress the thyroid until it causes functional collapse.
The proposals of natural medicine
Natural medicine aims at the recovery of thyroid function by working on three aspects: detoxification of the organism and reduction of the general inflammatory state, correction of the food style and “green” remedies to gently rebalance the activity of the gland, correction of the psycho-emotional states that alter the endocrine harmony of the body.
Genziana (Gentiana lutea) and Birch (Betula pubescens) to detoxify and detoxify.
Detoxifying and defying tissues is the first step in recovering a healthy, humorous environment, a prerequisite for the immune system to function properly. Among the detoxifying remedies, the most potent is the root of gentian, which in addition to stimulating pancreatic and liver activity, purifies the blood from each toxin. It is used associated with birch, a powerful anti-inflammatory, and cell draining.
Posology: Gentian’s mother tincture, 30 drops in little water twice a day; Betula pubescens glyceric macerator, 50 drops in little water in the morning before breakfast. Take for no more than 15 consecutive days.
Lazy thyroid herbs
Mirra (Commiphora myrrha). Considered in ancient times as gold for its antiseptic and analgesic power, myrrh is a vegetable resin rich in the etheric, dinghy, and sesquiterpene oils with disinfectant, anti-inflammatory, and anesthetic properties, which recognizes the ability to stimulate thyroid activity in a gentler and safer way than iodate plants. Disinfectant properties make it particularly useful in viral thyroids—posology: Mirra’s mother tincture, 20 drops diluted in little water 2 times a day.
Coleus (Coleus forskolin) Numerous studies have shown that forskolin, the active ingredient contained in this plant of the Ayurvedic tradition, plays an important role in modulating thyroid metabolism by increasing the production of thyroid hormones and stimulating their release. Antidepressant, my-relaxing, and anti-inflammatory, coleus is also able to increase the lipolysis of fats stored in tissues due to metabolic slowdown. Posology: Coleus Forkolii’s dry extract entitled 10% in Forskolin, 100mg twice a day.
Herbs against hyperthyroidism
Naturopathic doctors test for common nutrient deficiencies associated with hypothyroidism and supplement as needed.
- Vitamin B-12: helps improve cellular response to thyroid hormone and boosts energy production in cells to help with fatigue and other common symptoms of hypothyroidism.
- Iodine Ed L-Tirosin: indispensable for the production of thyroid hormones. Our body produces tyrosine naturally, but with age, this production becomes less and therefore you need to integrate it.
- Selenium: it is found concentrated in most thyroid than in any other part of the body. It protects the thyroid thanks to the antioxidant properties and acts as a cofactor in helping in the production of thyroid hormones, also helps the conversion of T4 to T3. In older people, this conversion decreases, due to a deficiency of selenium.
- Magnesium: Magnesium supplementation prevents a decrease in thyroid activity, which can occur due to excessive sports activity but also in sedentary people.
- Zinc: strengthens the functioning of the thyroid, it seems to contribute to the conversion of T4 to T3 being the latter thyroid hormone more active.
- Guggul: guggulsterone, extracted from Commiphora Mukul, stimulate the activity of the thyroid gland and increase the conversion of T4 to T3. It is these effects that the ability of guggulsterone to promote weight loss is attributed. The intake of guggulsterone is also accompanied by the decrease of oxidative lesions at the liver level, the main site of storage of T4, and conversion to T3.
- Forskolin: forskolin, extracted from Coleus forskohlii, acts by activating the adenylate enzyme cyclase, increasing the cyclical monophosphate adenosine (CAMP) in cells; the main consequence is the increase in the production of thyroid hormones and the stimulation of their release.
Homeopathic therapy of thyroid imbalances is based on the type of “earth” of the organism and therefore provides for an accurate individual history. Among the most commonly used remedies to counteract characteristic symptoms are:
The remedy of hyperthyroidism characterized by accelerated metabolism, in which the voracious appetite is accompanied by an important weight loss, with profuse sweats, a sense of weakness, violent palpitations, and irregularities of the cycle—how to use: Iodum 5 CH, 3 granules twice a day.
The trend to hyperthyroidism with violent mood swings and alternation between depressive moments with a sense of affective isolation and spikes in acute irritability that can go all the way to hatred. It gets worse with the heat, stopping by the sea, with weather changes, rain, drinking cold milk, and after Quito. Improve with outdoor movement. Way of use: Kalium Iodatum 5 CH, 3 granules twice a day.
Made from iodine-rich sea sponges and bromine, toast spongia is particularly suitable in thyroid dysfunction accompanied by dyspnea, flashes, acute anxiety, irritative coughing, and alterations in heart rhythm—way of use: Toast 5 CH, 3 granules three times a day.
The tendency to hypothyroidism with metabolic slowdown and fattening, especially in the abdominal area, coldness, apathetic depression, and psychomotor slowdown. Fall in libido, memory gaps and difficulty concentrating, thyroid calcifications. How to use: Baryta Carbon 200 CH single dose, one dose.
Autoimmune thyroiditis sufferers should under no circumstances use herbs, supplements, or phytotherapeutics containing iodate substances (including fucus), or immunostimulants (such as Uncaria, Astragalo, Echinacea, etc.).