Thyroid got you down?

Thyroid got you down?

DR. ASHLEY KOWALSKI, HBSC, ND

Used to be hyper, but now you’re feeling hypo? You might have a sluggish thyroid gland…

Did you know that an under-functioning thyroid gland can make you feel tired while negatively affecting metabolism – leading to weight gain? Some common signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism include: fatigue, weight gain, low mood, poor memory, constipation, cold intolerance, dry skin, hoarse voice, and hair loss/thinning. It is important to make note that many hypothyroid cases will present with some, but not all, of the latter symptoms.

Nutrient and/or mineral deficiencies, as well as autoimmune disorders, can also cause your thyroid gland to under-function. In practice, I order lab tests to rule-out the possibility of autoimmune attack against the thyroid. Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is one such autoimmune condition that results in the production of antibodies against the thyroid gland, causing it to under-function. Blood tests are warranted to evaluate the function of the thyroid gland.

A clear correlation exists between autoimmune disease and intestinal permeability. “Leaky gut” is a commonly used term for intestinal permeability. Leaky gut results from repetitive “trauma” to the intestinal tract and from the consumption of food intolerances & allergies. Factors such as stress, medication use, and poor food choices (aka “The Western diet”) negatively contribute to the health and function of the intestinal tract resulting in loosening of intestinal tight junctions, inflammation, and a disruption in the relative population of beneficial bacteria. The majority of the immune system lies within the gut; if gut integrity is compromised, the chances of immune dysfunction (and hence autoimmune disease) are increased.

It is important to look at the whole picture. Hypothyroidism can result from nutrient/mineral deficiencies and/or Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Assessing and treating gut health is important if antibodies are detected against the thyroid gland.

If you have a thyroid condition and would like to manage it naturally, book your appointment with Dr. Ashley today!

Dr. Ashley Kowalski is a naturopathic doctor in Ottawa, Canada. She is currently taking new patients at Restore Chiropractic. You can read more about Dr. Ashley on her profile page or her website, ashleykowalskind.com and follow her on twitter @dawnofnewhealth