Posted: 12/06/2015

How to Manage Hypothyroidism & Hashimoto’s Disease

Human_thyroid_3d_rendering

Almost 5% of Americans will suffer from hypothyroidism after the age of 12, and according to the American Thyroid Association, women are five to eight times more likely to have thyroid problems than men. So, what causes hypothyroidism? According to the National Institutes of Health (NIDDK), the most common cause of hypothyroidism in the U.S. is Hashimoto’s disease.

Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune condition that occurs when the body’s immune system attacks its own thyroid tissue. This also causes inflammation of the thyroid gland. The causes of Hashimoto’s are still not completely understood, but it seems to be passed on genetically and may be aggravated by environmental factors such as pollution, pesticides, diet and other factors. Sometimes Hashimoto’s disease occurs along with other autoimmune conditions such as celiac disease and type 1 diabetes. Taking into account what we know about hypothyroidism and autoimmune diseases, here are some ways to help manage and even stop symptoms of hypothyroidism.

Thyroid Medications
The most common hypothyroid treatment is levothyroxine. Levothyroxine (Synthroid) is a synthetic hormone that is identical to the T4 hormone produced by the thyroid gland. This medication successfully controls thyroid hormone levels for many people. However, levothyroxine and similar thyroid drugs are often prescribed to people with borderline hypothyroidism. According to a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine, prescribing this drug to borderline patients doesn’t have much benefit. People with borderline low thyroid levels may not actually have hypothyroidism, but they may be experiencing symptoms like fatigue.

People who are unnecessarily prescribed drugs for hypothyroidism, including Levothyroxine, will usually start to feel better, as far as their symptoms of fatigue go, but it can also have dangerous side effects if extra thyroid hormone is not needed, such as elevated heart rate, arrhythmias, insomnia and bone density loss.

Diet
While there is no miracle diet that has been proven to cure hypothyroidism, there does seem to be a correlation between the contemporary Western diet and the rise of autoimmune disorders. Diets high in unhealthy fats, sugar and simple carbohydrates cause excessive development of white adipose tissue (a type of fat). These tissues were once thought to do nothing but store energy, but it has been discovered that they also release substances that cause inflammation and play a role in the body’s immune system. They may play a role in the development of autoimmune diseases. Try to maintain a diet low in processed foods and simple carbohydrates.

Studies indicate that our gut microbiome, or the bacteria that live in our gastrointestinal tract, most likely influences the development of autoimmune conditions. In modern societies, there are fewer variations of gut bacteria, both good and bad, and there are more occurrences of autoimmune diseases. Ask your doctor about taking a well-rounded probiotic.

Lastly, many have heard that goitrogens that exist in foods such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, spinach and others are bad for the thyroid. However, the goitrogenic effects in these foods are often counteracted by the presence of iodine, and if these foods are cooked, most of the goitrogenic compounds are inactivated. Talk to your doctor about which foods you should or shouldn’t eat.                            

Stress Management
Chronic stress is common in our society with the productivity, emotional labor and work hours that are demanded of us on top of the stress of raising a family and managing a household. Chronic stress may be a factor in the development of autoimmune diseases, and we do know that stress can exacerbate symptoms. To help moderate stress, be sure to exercise. Also set aside some time each day to reduce stress by practicing yoga, meditation or taking a hot bath. Be sure to get seven to eight hours of sleep every night.

For more information about thyroid conditions and to save money on related medications, visit our Thyroid Conditions Page.

By HelpRx Staff Writer

Get your Prescription Discount Card and automatically SAVE on over 50,000 drugs nationwide.

Helprx_branded_card_desktop Click-here-redbg

About the HelpRx.info Blog

HelpRx.info is staffed by experts in the prescription medication industry. Get the latest health, medical news and pharmaceutical news that can save you money and allow you to take charge of your healthcare. With frequent updates about the prescription drug industry as well as medicine news, you'll gain an insider look into the industry and learn more about how to get the best price on your prescriptions while not sacrificing quality. Subscribe to the HelpRx.info pharmacy blog through our RSS feed or get updates by liking HelpRx.info on Facebook and following HelpRx.info on Twitter.

About HelpRx

Our discounts provide you access to negotiated prices on your prescription drugs at your local pharmacy. We can provide these because we're partnered with OptumRx, a BIG pharmacy benefit provider that provides prescription coverage for MILLIONS of people like you.

About ScriptRelief

Script Relief, the creator of the NPSN card and HelpRx discounts, helps consumers save an average of 50%, and up to 75%, off their prescriptions.

Popular Post

 

Get your Prescription Discount Card and automatically SAVE on over 50,000 drugs nationwide.

Helprx_branded_card_desktop Click-here-redbg

Popular Post

 

About the HelpRx.info Blog

HelpRx.info is staffed by experts in the prescription medication industry. Get the latest health, medical news and pharmaceutical news that can save you money and allow you to take charge of your healthcare. With frequent updates about the prescription drug industry as well as medicine news, you'll gain an insider look into the industry and learn more about how to get the best price on your prescriptions while not sacrificing quality. Subscribe to the HelpRx.info pharmacy blog through our RSS feed or get updates by liking HelpRx.info on Facebook and following HelpRx.info on Twitter.

About HelpRx

Our discounts provide you access to negotiated prices on your prescription drugs at your local pharmacy. We can provide these because we're partnered with OptumRx, a BIG pharmacy benefit provider that provides prescription coverage for MILLIONS of people like you.

About ScriptRelief

Script Relief, the creator of the NPSN card and HelpRx discounts, helps consumers save an average of 50%, and up to 75%, off their prescriptions.

Helprx_savings_logo

About Our Savings:

HelpRx.info is a discount pharmacy service, partnered with a leading pharmacy benefit manager. We negotiate lower prices on prescription medications, that we pass on to our members for free. There is no cost to use our cards and coupon, and anyone can take advantage of our discounts, regardless of healthcare coverage.

Our savings assurance of “up to 75% off” comes from historical data from actual claims. This data includes savings for both brand name and generic medications.