Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis / Hashimoto’s Disease
Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis is one of the most common forms of Thyroid disease. It’s an autoimmune condition where the body’s immune system attacks the thyroid gland, diminishing its ability to create hormones that impact every cell of the body.
Hashimoto’s Disease in New Zealand
Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis is a relatively common autoimmune disease in New Zealand. Women are 7 to 8 times more likely to get the condition than men and most are diagnosed when they are between 30 to 50 years old.
Symptoms of Hashimoto’s Disease
The thyroid gland produces hormones that regulate many important body functions, such as heart rate, energy levels, and metabolism. When the thyroid gland is not functioning properly due to Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, it can cause various symptoms, the most common being:
- Weight gain or difficulty losing weight
- Feeling cold all the time
- Brain fog or poor concentration
- Muscle pain or weakness
- Joint pain
- Swollen neck (goitre) due to an enlarged thyroid gland
- Anxiety and or depression
- Hair loss
Diagnosis of Hashimoto’s Disease
The diagnosis of Hashimoto’s disease can be done through blood tests that measure the amount of thyroid antibodies and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) in the blood.
Triggers of Hashimoto’s Disease
Several factors may contribute to the development of Hashimoto’s disease. These include:
- Viral infections
- Gut dysregulation and infections
- Exposure to toxins including heavy metals
- High levels of stress
Hashimoto’s v Hypothyroidism
Hashimoto’s Disease is a condition in which the body attacks its own tissues and organs, including the thyroid gland. Hypothyroidism is when the thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough hormones to maintain one’s basal metabolic rate – in other words, it slows down your metabolism.
The possible causes for this slowing down can be one or more of the following:
- unresolved inflammation issues
- systemic infection
- chronic stress
- autoimmune problems such as Hashimoto’s Disease
- nutrient deficiencies such as B12, zinc, selenium or iodine deficiencies.
The Prognosis for Hashimoto’s Disease Patients
The prognosis for Hashimoto’s patients is typically good, especially if the condition is diagnosed and treated early. Natural medicine support includes eliminating inflammatory foods from the diet, lowering stress and optimising sleep, addressing any underling infections and addressing any nutritional deficiencies .