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Thyroid disease and the metabolic syndrome

Updated: Nov 29, 2023

The thyroid is a gland that mainly produces the hormone thyroxine (T4) and small amounts of triiodothyronine (T3). They regulate cardiovascular function, muscle function, energy metabolism, development and growth of the body and brain, cognitive function. All processes, on the other hand, related to the function of thyroid hormones need sufficient energy in the form of ATP, which is produced by the mitochondria.

Yes, I know - mitochondria again (!), but it's insanely important to realize that thyroid dysfunction is not just due to the thyroid itself, but is a more complex process. The production of thyroid hormones is controlled by the pituitary gland through the secretion of the hormone TSH, hence if the function of the pituitary gland itself is in dysfunction, both for biochemical reasons and.... biomechanical (!), then the thyroid gland will also be malfunctioning. However, this does not mean, when determining thyroid hormones in laboratory tests, that necessarily TSH levels must be disturbed in order for thyroid hormone function to be disturbed. Also, if T3 and T4 are within the reference ranges, it does not mean that they are working properly - once again, I emphasize the insanely important interpretation of blood test results by a specialist, who must compare them with other parameters, as well as the patient's history and symptoms. For example, often observed today subclinical hypothyroidism, for which the results are, after all, within the reference ranges! Another example is an elevated MCV (mean erythrocyte volume) parameter in hypothyroidism, but also, for example, in vitamin B12 deficiency. Never leave the interpretation of the results to yourself!

The so-called metabolic syndrome, which consists precisely of thyroid dysfunction, as well as concomitant insulin resistance, elevated inflammation, increased blood pressure, high triglycerides, and abdominal obesity, has been observed for some time in "highly developed" countries. The syndrome mainly affects middle-aged people, especially women. It is found with a significant reduction in the volume and number of mitochondria, resulting in fatigue, impaired cognitive function, so-called "brain-fog", impaired fat burning, increased blood glucose levels or constriction of blood vessels.

The mitochondria and thyroid gland need substances such as iron, magnesium, coenzyme Q10 and selenium to function properly. Hence, instead of looking only at TSH levels, we need to consider the physiology of mitochondria and thyroid hormones. Also, when TSH is normal, there may be a so-called low T3 and T4 syndrome, which try to adjust to cellular levels to maintain balance. Again - it is necessary to see a specialist who will verify, along with the patient's history, the specific disorder and tailor specific treatments. Two patients with Hashimoto's disease will never be treated the same way!

Also, the biomechanical level is insanely important in both thyroid disease and metabolic syndrome. If there is tension and dysfunction in the pharyngeal or abdominal area - the organs and glands will not be able to perform their full function. Hence, working with an osteopath to abolish dysfunction at the level of at least the pre-tracheal fascia, the upper thoracic diaphragm, improving the motility of the pancreas, unblocking the work of the abdominal diaphragm and working on many other structures, will have a key impact as a complementary treatment.

So what will serve our mitochondria, glands and nervous system that affects them?

  • dedicated moderate physical activity - preferably weight training and HIIT

  • restriction of caloric intake and use of intermittent fasting to exclude oxidative stress

  • space at the biomechanical level to improve the pressure inside the body cavities, which can easily be achieved with proper breathing

  • Omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, coenzyme Q10, iron, vit.D3 - in the first place taken from food, and in the second from supplementation selected under the guidance of a specialist on the basis of laboratory tests

Thanks for being here and supporting my work! ---


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