Thyroid-Related Fatigue

Fatigue is a growing problem among Americans. Some may be a product of working too much and too many hours. Some may be attributable to adrenal burnout or fibromyalgia, or other medical issues. Some is certainly caused by thyroid malfunction. How do you tell the difference?

Thyroid-related fatigue shows itself when you find it difficult to sustain energy compared to your previous level of fitness and endurance. If your thyroid is not functioning properly, it is difficult to sustain energy output. You’ll feel as though you just don’t enough energy to do the activities that used to come easily.

The thyroid is a small gland shaped like a butterfly, located in the front of the neck. It acts on virtually every organ, tissue and cell in the body. It has been estimated that half the cases in the United States go undiagnosed, yet untreated thyroid disease can cause cardiovascular disease, infertility, muscle weakness, osteoporosis, and even coma or death.

Eighty percent of thyroid malfunction occurs as hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid). Its symptoms include fatigue, memory loss, depression, constipation, and fluctuations in weight and appetite. Other signs of hypothyroidism are sensitivity to cold, dry skin and hair, hair loss (especially at the outer edge of the eyebrows), and brittle nails.

The test most often used to diagnose hypothyroidism is the thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) test. The acceptable TSH range is between 0.3 and 3.04. Many practitioners believe people with levels from 1.5 to 3.0 could benefit from treatment.

Most physicians treat hypothyroidism with synthetic thyroid, but many natural medical doctors believe conventional treatments are ineffective. Instead of the synthetic thyroid, they recommend Armour thyroid. Still, there are concerns. When you take a thyroid hormone over a period of years, even the natural version, your thyroid is likely to become less functional over time.

There are completely natural methods to support your thyroid:

1. Clean up your diet. Reduce or eliminate processed and refined foods.

2. Get enough selenium and iodine.

3. Get lots of omega-3 healthy fats from sources such as krill oil. Studies show a dosage of 3 to 5 grams daily help restore thyroid function.

4. Get a good night’s sleep, in total darkness.

5. Address any emotional stress.

Emotional stress damages your adrenal impairment, and taking care of your mind and body is the foundational step of caring for your thyroid.