Do you feel fatigued and out of sorts? Are you always cold? Maybe you struggle with weight gain despite trying every diet and lifestyle plan available. Cholesterol issues? Depression? Do you struggle against brain fog, clumsiness, general malaise, and digestive issues? Has anxiety,
exhaustion, and feeling overwhelmed taken over your life?
Before you accept this as normal, consider getting your thyroid checked. The thyroid is the master gland of the human body. It controls everything from your body temperature, fat-burning, the production and regulation of sex hormones, energy levels, brain function, and much more.
Twice in 10 years, I suffered from hypothyroidism—an underactive thyroid disorder that affects 200+ million people worldwide. Riddled with weight issues, food addictions, adrenal problems, and declining health, I tried every diet and lifestyle plan out there, to no avail. I consulted over 50 doctors and endocrinologist, and no one could help me. One doctor even said, “This is just too complicated.” I felt so alone, depressed, and frightened about my future.
I became used to feeling terrible in my body (and mind) that I had forgotten what it was like to feel normal and happy. Lying awake at night, I would cry, “Why is this happening to me!?” I later realized I was not cursed in life, but actually blessed with one of the most enriching experiences which led to me helping people all over the world regain their health and happiness.
So, I rejected my premature demise and took charge of my own health by becoming my own doctor. I researched my condition, ordered my own blood tests, bought thyroid hormones, and tracked my temperature, pulse, and blood pressure. Aside from a few bumps in the road…my unchartered path to wellness worked—in fact, it worked phenomenally well.
I never intended to write about thyroid issues, but I kept meeting people all over the world who were suffering—either undiagnosed or unsuccessfully treated by their current doctor. After helping hundreds of strangers, it was a natural calling to spread the word further and write The Paleo Thyroid Solution. If you are suffering from thyroid problems, here are a few ways to regain control of your health:
1. You don’t have to accept this
There is a solution. People out there have walked your journey (or even tougher journeys) and overcame them. Have faith that you will get through this. Thyroid issues are solvable and don’t let anyone convince you otherwise—even a doctor. Had I allowed doctors to be completely in charge of my health, I’d probably be dead.
2. Educate yourself
Learn everything possible about your condition (free internet access is available at most public libraries). Take copious notes about your symptoms. Extensive research and record keeping might inspire the right doctor to take risks and be open about previously unknown thyroid treatment protocols.
3. Find the right doctor
Often patients need a doctor that’s gone beyond the standard MD license to be truly informed about thyroid conditions and its various components—those are usually Functional Medicine MDs and Integrative MDs. Call a doctor’s office and ask:
● Does the doctor routinely test Free T3, Free T4, and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) for hypothyroidism? *If they do not test Free T3, they are uninformed so take your thyroid health elsewhere.
● Does the doctor prescribe natural desiccated thyroid (NDT)? *If their answer is “No” or “The doctor uses Synthroid or Levothyroxine,” they are uninformed and you should run.
● Does the doctor treat patients by eliminating symptoms along with blood work or does the doctor rely on blood tests alone to determine treatment? *Any doctor that rigidly and solely relies on lab results is uninformed and cause you harm…get outta there and find another
4. Explore the alternatives
Many people who are taking thyroid hormone replacement under their doctor’s supervision still don’t feel energetic, happy, and as amazing as they could be. Here are some natural ways to feel even better:
● Assist adrenal function with Vitamin B-Complex and Vitamin C. Also add a pinch of Celtic sea salt to your filtered water.
● Eliminate all grains, dairy, sugar, and other inflammatory promoting/Hashimoto’s-triggering foods.
● Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep every night.
● Prevent the spiral of a negative experience. If someone upset you, do you call one friend to vent or replay the entire story with five different people? Each time, your body reignites the negative experience which can tap your already exhausted adrenal glands to produce the stress hormone cortisol. Instead, take a 10-15 minute daydream “time-out,” preferably in nature to help you detach from the experience.
● Reduce stress as much as possible. This could be asking a family member to help you with household chores for a few months while you recover. Or carve out time every day to silence your cell phone and lay down quietly to meditate, and visualize.
5. Seek inspiration and hope
It’s essential to avoid dramatic, depressing and negative TV shows or movies when dealing with a health issue. In my darkest hour, spiritual audio books, meditation CDs and podcasts on health and wellness were my best friends. The movie, You Can Heal Your Life instilled hope. I thanked my body for protecting me and said, “You will feel great again, just be patient. You will prevail.”
This sent the following message to my body: “You are safe.” I watched a lot of comedy and listened to stories about people’s health transformations. I created a vision board to health and healing. I became a devoted fan of Hay House Radio and Gaia. I also found a life coach who resonated with me.
Remember: You are not broken. And despite feeling like your body is your enemy…in reality, your body is constantly trying to protect you, take care of you, and save your life! Appreciate that wonder and help your body help you as much as you can.
With the correct diet and lifestyle (and if applicable, thyroid hormone replacement), you can feel better in six to eight weeks. And your symptoms can fully disappear within six months to a year—that’s not long at all in the grand scheme of a one’s entire life.