Hashimoto's Thyroiditis

grains-gluten-thyroiditisHashimoto's thyroiditis is an auto-immune condition where you are making antibodies against your own thyroid proteins and thyroid enzymes. This can result in thyroid inflammation and over time the thyroid can slow down and require thyroid replacement therapy.

If you have constipation, weight gain, slow metabolism, hair thinning, outer third of eyebrow thinning or losing hair, fluid retention especially shins and generally tired so that you feel you need to go to bed early or have an afternoon nap this means you may have a low thyroid function and if you have your thyroid antibodies tested and they are running higher than normal then you may have what is called Hashimoto's thyroiditis.

Hashimoto's thyroiditis is more prevalent in women and affects about 10% of women. It is more common as the body ages. I see many women in their late 40's early 50's with thyroid antibodies.

In medical journals you will see that doctors don't really know what causes this immune response.

The things I have noticed as a holistic doctor by direct clinical trial helping women with Hashimoto's are:

  1. Going on a gluten free diet often helps settle the antibodies down lower.
  2. Going on a good dose of selenium around 200mcg per day helps the antibodies go down.
  3. There seems to be some relationship with viral or other infections that create the auto-immune reaction

Hashimoto's is an immune system error or cross-reaction possibly more common in those with an infection like Esptein Barr Virus (Glandular Fever) or those with sensitivity to gluten grains or perhaps even heavy metals and other chemicals and radiation exposure.

Topping up Vitamin D also helps.

A diet rich in natural anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant healthy fat foods should help such as coconut, olive oils with spices like turmeric, ginger and lots of spray free organic colourful vegetables and seasonal fruit could only help.

I tend to avoid high iodine dosing in Hashimoto's as there is one theory that adding iodine makes the thyroid react more and get more inflamed. So I tend to go with selenium, zinc, Vitamin D, gluten free and see a good response then introduce lower dose iodine or seaweeds like bladder wrack to help kill off any viral infections or other infections upsetting the thyroid.

When topping up the thyroid with thyroid replacement options there is a choice between natural dried whole "pig's" thyroid capsules or tablet and pharmaceutical synthetic blends of "thyroxine" (T4) and/or T3 (Liothyronine). If you have Hashimoto's you are welcome to come visit me to go over options that can be prescribed via a compounding pharmacy here in Auckland.