The thyroid gland governs our metabolism and stimulates the production of energy within our cells that is necessary for life. It also controls our body’s thermostat. Because every organ in the body is dependent upon proper thyroid function, the spectrum through which hypothyroidism manifests itself can be quite broad.
As we established in yesterday’s post, many Americans have no idea they’re suffering from low thyroid – 13 million, in fact. So how do you know if hypothyroidism is affecting you? Surprisingly, the best place to begin isn’t a blood test, but rather with your symptoms. Most people associate hypothyroidism with weight gain and low energy, but did you know that there are actually a host of symptoms that can be caused by low thyroid?
Do you suffer from one or more of the following?
•Loss of energy (fatigue)
•Difficulty losing weight
•Fluid retention or swelling
•Enlarged tongue with teeth indentations
•Cold extremities, cold sensitivity or intolerance
•Difficulty concentrating and short term memory loss
•Decreased mental sharpness, “brain fog”
•Loss of hair on the outer edge of the eyebrows
•Skin pallor, pastiness and puffiness
•Brittle fingernails with ridging
•Low blood pressure
•Low basal body temperature
•Slow pulse rate
•Elevated cholesterol and triglycerides
•Depression or mood swings
•Muscle pain and cramps
•Tiredness after a full night’s sleep
•Recurrent and chronic infections
•Enlarged thyroid gland
•Loss of libido
•Tingling and/or numbness in extremities
Hypothyroidism can reveal itself in one or more of any of these symptoms and each person is different. If any of these symptoms sound familiar, you may benefit from a therapeutic trial of natural thyroid supplementation. You may have had the experience that you have already gone to your physician complaining of one or more of the symptoms above, yet when he checked your thyroid blood levels everything was within the normal range. You have all the symptoms of hypothyroidism, but no diagnosis. This is a frustrating process and sadly, very common. Next week we’ll discuss why most doctors can’t see past the blood tests to the patient and why this isn’t the best way to diagnose hypothyroidism. Blood tests are only one piece of the puzzle.