Aging and Low Thyroid Function
Dr. Edward Thorpe

Approximately one in twenty Canadians suffer from thyroid disorders, and women are more prone to these disorders than men. The current literature indicates that at least one woman in every ten may have signs of faulty thyroid by the age of fifty. There are two main causes of thyroid disorders. HYPERTHYROIDISM means an overactive thyroid – too much thyroid hormone is being produced, causing such symptoms as nervousness, increased sweating, palpitations, weight loss, insomnia, weakness and frequent bowel movements.
HYPOTHYROIDISM, or underactive thyroid, means not enough thyroid hormone is produced by the thyroid or absorbed into the body’s cells. The symptoms and signs of underactive thyroid are subtle in origin and insidious in onset. It often takes years and sometimes decades to reach a stage where it is diagnosed. Throughout these years one may not be clinically sick, but neither is one very well. Symptoms may come and go, they may be individually treated in isolation, or they may be totally ignored. The individual and his / her physician may not suspect the culprit. Some of the causes of underactive thyroid are: childbirth, stress from divorce or death of loved ones, drugs (Lithium, Cortisol and/or Amiodarone), infection of the thyroid gland, pituitary tumors, excessive x-rays, low carbohydrate diets, age related changes, and/or genetically predisposed thyroid disorder. If someone in the family has thyroid trouble or has had a thyroid problem in the past, it may be caused genetically; the individual’s physician needs to be aware of a possible genetic predisposition.

There are many symptoms and signs of hypothyroidism. Cold extremities (hands and feet), hypothermia (body temperature may drop below 37?C), dry skin, dull facial expressions, puffiness, drooping eyelids, sparse, coarse and thinning hair, forgetfulness, constipation, leg cramps, paresthesias of hands and feet, menorrhagia (menstrual irregularities are prominent), ingestion-digestion disorders, drowsiness, sleepiness, general feelings of cold, headaches, fatigue, and/or weakness. If you have any of the above symptoms, especially low body temperature (below 37?C) with cold hands and feet, fatigue, headaches and gastrointestinal disorders, you may have low thyroid function. Laboratory tests are not always conclusive.

KRIPPS PHARMACY LTD. HAS DEVELOPED A PROGRAM TO ASSIST YOUR NORMAL THYROID FUNCTIONUse a glass thermometer, preferably a Basal Thermometer, three hours after awakening. If it registers below 36.7 or 98.2, then have your thyroid checked by your physician.

1. Hypoglycemic Diet: Carefully follow this diet. It is designed to prevent hyperinsulinemia (high insulin levels) High insulin levels produce a potentially deleterious prostaglandin Series 2 (PGE2) eicosanoid-compromising cascade. Do not get hungry; if you do, it is too late. Have 3 parts of protein to 4 parts of unrefined carbohydrates including fruits and vegetables. Use only virgin olive oil.
2. Digestive Aid: If you are prone to gas, bloating or constipation use Mega-Zyme capsules and Carb-ase E.C. To start, take one capsule of each just before food and increase Mega-Zyme only to 2,3 or 4 capsules. Avoid taking liquids ½ hour before, during or after food. But drink plenty of liquids between meals. Always eat protein first at every meal.
3. Chromium: Take one 250 mcg capsule daily. This helps to stabilize the sugar level.
4. Tyrosine: Take 500 mg 3 times a day. The amino acid tyrosine is an essential constituent of the thyroid hormone.
5. Guggulipid: Take one capsule twice daily and increase to two capsules twice daily. A natural herb, shown to exhibit thyroid-stimulating activity, guggulipid has significant ability to lower serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
6. Supplementation: Take a multiple vitamin and mineral supplement such as two BEST tablets daily, or one of each Mega-Vitamin Kit capsules daily.
7. Omega-3: Take two FISHOL E.C. daily. This is the best source of activated Omega-3 and the fish oil is protected from stomach acids by enteric coating.
8. B 12 supplement: One capsule of Mega-B12 1000 to 2000 mcg (methylcobalamin with folic acid) sublingual SR.
9. Avoid undue stress, environmental pollution, alcohol, coffee, tea, sugar and white flour.
10. Exercise regularly in moderation.For more information, read Thyroid Awareness, a publication by Stephen Kripps, which is obtainable at Kripps Pharmacy.

To contact Dr. Thorpe, or Kripps Pharmacy,
Visit us at 5413 West Boulevard, Vancouver, BC, V6M 3W5
Call us at 604.687.2564; Fax 604.685.9721
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The information contained in this article is for educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for diagnosis or treatment with a qualified health care practitioner.