Are you unable to lose weight? Feel anxious or depressed? Experiencing hair loss? Low energy levels? Overly sensitive to cold weather? Is the outer 3rd of your eyebrow thinning? If so, you may have a sluggish thyroid.
Your thyroid is vital to your health and it is the master of your metabolism. It is your body’s internal thermostat, regulating temperature by secreting two hormones, T3 and T4 that control your ability to burn calories and use energy. The thyroid controls your weight, body temperature, heart rate, energy levels, menstrual regularity and muscle strength.
The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped, hormone-producing tissue the size of a walnut located at the lower front of the neck just below the Adam’s apple. Every cell in your body needs small amounts of thyroid hormone to function optimally.
Hypothyroidism is a health condition in which there’s insufficient thyroid activity. Approximately 27 million Americans are experiencing a thyroid disorder, and less than 25% of those with an under active thyroid have been properly diagnosed or treated. Some early symptoms are mistaken for fatigue, anxiety, or aging. Untreated hypothyroidism dramatically increases your risk of serious health concerns and degenerative diseases.
Thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) is secreted by the pituitary gland in your subconscious brain. In early stages of hypothyroidism, the pituitary gland releases more and more TSH, causing elevated TSH levels. This causes the thyroid to work overtime to secrete more thyroxin (T4) and T3, the biologically active form of thyroid. Most of the T4 produced is converted to T3 by your liver. If the TSH is more than 0.5 and less than 3.0, there is a 90% probability it’s anterior pituitary hypo-function.
Measuring different hormones in the blood can determine if the thyroid gland is working properly. To most effectively screen for hypothyroidism and other thyroid imbalances, request blood tests that also include thyroid antibodies. It’s recommended that all individuals be tested for hypothyroidism by the age of 50 as well as women who are or are planning to become pregnant.
Most doctors only test TSH. TSH alone is not a thorough screening of thyroid function.
One study showed that individuals with TSH values more than 2.0 have an increased risk of developing clinically significant thyroid deficiency over the next 20 years. Other studies show that TSH values more than1.9 indicate risk of autoimmune disease of the thyroid gland. Another study showed that TSH values more than 4.0 increases the likelihood of heart disease in postmenopausal women.
Suggested Thyroid Testing
Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH). Beware most all of the so called “normal” ranges, they are simply dead wrong. The ideal level for TSH is between 1 and 1.5 mIU/L.  
                                                                                                                                                               T4 panel
  • Free T4 – The normal level of free T4 is between 0.9 and 1.8 ng/dl.
  • T4 Thyroxine – optimal levels are 8-12.5
  • Free Thyroxine Index – optimal levels are 1.5-5
                                    T3 Panel
  • Free T3 – Optimal ranges are between 1.8-5.4
  • T3 Uptake – optimal levels are 27-37
  • T3 Total – optimal ranges are 72-170
  • Reverse T3
  • Thyroid Peroxidase Antibody – optimal ranges are 0-19

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