Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disease that affects the thyroid gland, and “The number of people who have Hashimoto’s disease in the United States is unknown as of National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. While it’s unclear how many people struggle with Hashimoto’s disease, researchers know it affects women more than men, and Zoe Saldana can attest to that. That avatar and Guardians of the Galaxy Star revealed a few years ago that she has the disorder, as does her mother and sister. To learn more about Hashimoto’s disease, Eat this, not that! health spoke with dr Michael Shepherd, a Board Certified Nutrition from Harvard University and a Board Certified in Internal Medicine and is at the Center for Integrative Medicine in Tarzana, California, which explains what you need to know. Read on – and don’t miss these to protect your health and the health of others Sure signs you already had COVID.
dr Hirt says, “Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is a condition in which the immune system attacks your thyroid, a butterfly-shaped gland that sits just below your Adam’s apple at the front of your neck. At the onset of the disease, patients may feel very little, but over time, as the thyroid is destroyed by the immune attack, patients may experience symptoms of thyroid hormone deficiency. These symptoms of low thyroid hormone levels typically include cold intolerance, fatigue, bad mood, hair loss, constipation and general bloating, a weak voice, and weight gain.”
Every cell in your body has a receptor for thyroid hormones. This means that healthy cells need healthy thyroid hormone levels. Once Hashimoto’s destructive process has compromised your gland’s ability to pump out sufficient thyroid hormone, patients will begin to experience the ill effects of low levels of thyroid hormone in the blood. Much like the lights in a movie theater slowly dimming just before the show begins, patients with Hashimoto’s may not initially notice that their bodies are changing. Patients may think they are tired from not getting enough sleep, that they are gaining weight because of their diet, or that they are bloated from excessive salt consumption. At some point, most patients realize something is wrong and seek medical attention from their doctor.”
dr Hirt explains: “A simple blood test can determine the extent of the thyroid hormone deficiency, and prescription thyroid hormone is available to replace the deficiency of thyroid hormone. (Fun fact: Thyroid hormone was the very first prescription drug approved in the United States about 150 years ago.)”
dr Hirt lists the following signs to look out for.
- “Weight gain. The weight you gain looks “swollen,” as if someone stuck an air tube under your skin and blew you up.
- Hair loss on the eyebrows. You start losing the outer third of your eyebrows.
- voice change. Friends and family tell you that your voice deepens and sounds serious.
- Cold hands and throat. Many people have cold hands and feet, but not Hashimoto. However, if your neck is cold AND you have cold hands or feet, it can be a sign of low thyroid hormone levels. A warm neck and cold hands are more common and are not a sign of weekend thyroid.)”
That Mayo Clinic explains: “Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disease. The immune system makes antibodies that attack thyroid cells as if they were bacteria, viruses, or some other foreign substance. The immune system mistakenly uses agents to fight diseases that damage cells and lead to cell death.
What triggers the immune system to attack thyroid cells is not clear. The onset of the disease may be related to:
- genetic factors
- Environmental triggers such as infection, stress or exposure to radiation
- Interactions between environmental and genetic factors.”
According to the Mayo Clinic“Most people with Hashimoto’s disease take medication to treat hypothyroidism. If you have mild hypothyroidism, you may not receive treatment but instead receive regular TSH tests to monitor thyroid hormone levels.
T-4 hormone replacement therapy
Hypothyroidism associated with Hashimoto’s disease is treated with a synthetic hormone called levothyroxine (Levoxyl, Synthroid, others). The synthetic hormone works like the T-4 hormone naturally produced by the thyroid gland.
The goal of treatment is to restore and maintain adequate T-4 hormone levels and improve symptoms of hypothyroidism. You will need this treatment for the rest of your life.” And to protect your life and the lives of others, do not visit any of them 35 places where you are most likely to contract COVID.
Heather Newgen has over two decades of reporting and writing experience on health, fitness, entertainment and travel. Heather currently freelances for several publications. Continue reading
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