Thursday, October 27, 2011

Thyroid Thursday

I often use the adjectives busy and tired as my answer when asked the question, “How are you?” On a good day, I tell them I’m peachy. If it’s an outstanding day, I might say, “If I were any better I’d be twins!” On a particularly tired day, you may hear me quip, “If I was any more tired, I’d be comatose!” Today is a tired day – it’s a seasonably cool day, somewhat grey and rainy. I’m fighting hard against an annoying little cold, and working at staying in the moment and getting done what I need done so I can go home soon and change into some warm sweats, then crawl under the covers with a bowl of warm soup and a good book.

The thing is, I basically know why I’m tired – too busy, not enough sleep, fighting a cold. Nothing life-changing or earth-shattering, just your average day – with an easy fix of just cutting back on my activities and getting more sleep. Overall, I’m very healthy and EXTREMELY blessed. But what about when you’re tired day after day after day, and you just don’t know why??? My dear friend Monica sent me a very good article from Women’s Day magazine on just that – why am I always tired? She, like several of my other friends, have had issues with thyroid disease, and/or have had their thyroid removed. Now you may have heard the thyroid blamed for not be able to lose weight, or for being tired. But what is it, and why all the bad press?

Here’s some info I retrieved from

The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland that sits low on the front of the neck. Your thyroid lies below your Adam’s apple, along the front of the windpipe. Brownish-red in color, the thyroid is rich with blood vessels. Nerves important for voice quality also pass through the thyroid. The thyroid secretes several hormones. The main hormone is thyroxine, also called T4. Thyroid hormones act throughout the body, influencing metabolism, growth and development, and body temperature. During infancy and childhood, adequate thyroid hormone is crucial for brain development.

And from the article from Women’s Day, they explain:

Your thyroid gland plays a crucial role in regulating just about everything, including your heart rate, metabolism, muscles and mood. If your thyroid is underactive (hypothyroidism), it’s not making enough thyroid hormone, so your body starts pumping out extra thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), which makes your TSH levels high. Insufficient amounts of thyroid hormone can cause symptoms like weight gain, fatigue, chills, and dry skin, hair and nails. On the other hand, when your thyroid is making too much thyroid hormone, you’ve got an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism), which causes weight loss, insomnia and anxiety.

Who knew this little bit of your body had such power??? If you are tired all the time with no explanation, please be sure to go see your regular doctor or endocrinologist. I encourage you to exercise your brain today, and read this article from Woman’s Day entitled, “The Surprising Reason You’re Always Tired.” (Click on the title to go to the article). It might give you some surprising answers!

Okay, I’m off to take more Vitamin C and make a steaming hot cup of organic lemon echinacea tea… ah…ah… ah-CHOO! Oops, bless me!


1 comment:

  1. I would also recommend looking up Mary Shomon on the web. She has an excellent web site on dedicated to thyroid related diseases.
    Feel better Lin!!!! This time next week it's girls weekend!!! ;)