Invite Health Podcast, Episode hosted by Amanda Williams, MPH
On today's episode, I will be discussing the thyroid gland. This is very complex - there are a lot of things that happen within the gland that regulate so many aspect of our health. Many individuals are oftentimes unaware about just how critical it is. So, I'm going to break all of this down for you and give you some tips as to what you can be doing when it comes to nutrients and blood testing in its regulation.
Defining Healthy Thyroid Function
The thyroid gland is responsible for much more than what most of us give it credit for. Many times we just think of it as a hormone-secreting gland that somehow regulates our metabolism
. And, therefore, has something to do with regulating and controlling our weight
Now, we certainly know that that is one aspect. But you also have to recognize that the thyroid impacts every single cell in the body, including temperature regulation, how our cells receive nutrients, the ability to detoxify our cells
, and more! We also know that the thyroid has a major impact on heart health and your skeletal muscles.
"More doctors in this country are writing out more prescriptions for the thyroid than any other prescription in the United States."
- Amanda Williams, MPH
Thyroid dysfunction is really prevalent in the United States; it is estimated that a good 20 million Americans are dealing with it. But we also know that, within this condition (commonly called hypothyroid
) when you look at the most commonly prescribed medications year after year across the country, Levothyroxine
(or Synthroid™) is consistently is at the top, as the most prescribed medication. This means that more doctors in this country are writing out more prescriptions for the thyroid than any others in the United States. But still, many are unsure as to what it is they should be doing to follow a healthy lifestyle while living with this condition
The function of this gland is to produce hormones into the blood stream. It is a butterfly-shaped gland that sits at the base of the neck. If you are lacking the proper release of hormones
from the thyroid gland, you can have start to display numerous symptoms, including:
- hair loss
- developing a hoarse or raspy voice
- difficult time regulating temperature (always cold)
- difficult concentrating
- low mood, anxiety or depression
- joint and muscle pain
Roughly five out of every 100 Americans have this condition. So how do you know if you have an issue with your thyroid? Tune in to our next episode for more information.