Effective Treatments For Hypothyroidism And Hyperthyroidism Using Vitamins: Two Sides Of The Same Coin
Hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism have been recognized as conditions since the late 1800s. During the 1920s, in fact, the required iodization of table salt was instituted as a counter-measure to the widespread problem of hypothyroidism, goiter, and other related conditions. According to Wikipedia, iodine deficiency is the leading cause of preventable developmental and intellectual disabilities.
It was a professor of pediatrics who led the United States in adopting the practice that Switzerland had already adopted, of adding iodine to table salt and making it a requirement. This was David Murray Cowie. It was, however, discovered earlier than this that iodine would benefit patients.
In the late 1800s, natural medicine physicians and conventional medicine physicians worked side-by-side, even though they used different techniques and methods. The physicians who worked in rural areas tended to practice a more natural type of medicine, and there were few doctors who were trained in medicine at a school. Schools and standards did not exist yet outside of large cities in the northeast of the United States.
Due to the lack of hospitals and pharmacies in rural areas, these doctors were forced to rely on other methods, such as correcting nutrient deficiencies (such as in the case of anemia) or iodine (such as in the case of goiter). Other alternative remedies were also used, and some were toxic.
However, many of the formulas used by these rural physicians were plant based remedies. In the era of the Civil War, most physicians used plant based remedies to treat common conditions, most notably malaria. Before the formation of the American Medical Association in 1847, there were no standard requirements for training of medical doctors, and most were trained as apprentices to older doctors in their area.
Medical texts from the 1800s, such as The New Medical World and The Complete Herbalist discuss alternative plant-based remedies and the conditions they were capable of treating. Since natural medicine was in large part based on direct observation, as well as applied use, many of their remedies were different and much safer than the common conventional practices of blood-letting, leeches, and other strange and unproven treatments.
When it came to the treatment of goiter and other symptoms of hypothyroidism, the discovery of iodine was the key. Not only was it cost-effective in terms of expense, but it was also super-effective in treating the condition. As is often the case, however, this type of natural medicine cannot be patented.
After the 1920s, when iodine was required to be put into all forms of table salt, the culture forgot about goiter and hypothyroidism for a very long time. Most people were now getting adequate amounts of this mineral, and thus goiter was for the most part eradicated.
In the 21st Century, however, this problem has returned. There were two factors that brought it back. The growing popularity of sea salt, which is not required to be iodized, and the adding of bromide instead of iodine to breads and cereals, were the biggest factors in its return. Bromide is an antagonist to iodine, and prevents its uptake by the body. The invention and patenting of synthetic thyroid medications undoubtedly contributed to this rise in goiter as well.
Today, most people are diagnosed with hypo or hyperthyroidism by way of a standard blood test. These two conditions are two sides of the same coin, as both are characterized by low T-4 hormone. T-4 hormone is the iodine hormone (triiodothyroxine), so both conditions can be treated simply by adding iodine to the diet.
However, most doctors will tell their patients to start taking synthetic thyroid hormone for their condition instead, since this is a patented medication for this purpose. But the synthetic hormone is not completely effective, as it does not fully and correctly convert T4 into T3, which is necessary for proper thyroid functioning. A maker of levothyroxine, the synthetic hormone, was fined by the FDA for manipulating study results to convince physicians that the synthetic hormone is superior to desiccated thyroid and other natural medicine treatments. Patients have much better, and longer lasting, results when they use natural iodine or desiccated thyroid instead of the synthetic hormone.
From research evidence and case studies provided by practitioners of natural medicine, iodine not only treats hypo and hyperthyroidism effectively, it is also free of the side effects common to the synthetic medications that are available.
In fact, people in China and Japan, who consume seaweed vegetables which are high in iodine on a regular basis, are virtually free of thyroid conditions. The people in Japan have a number of different health statistics than those in other developed nations, such as a lower breast cancer mortality rate (which is lost upon immigration to the United States), a lower rate of prostate cancer, and a significantly lower rate of heart related deaths.
While this may not entirely be attributed to their iodine intake, consumption of iodine on a regular basis is one of the most striking differences between the American and Japanese diet. Others have studied this relationship of iodine intake to overall health benefits as well, and it is a topic worth exploring.
As a consequence, those who are seeking to treat their condition may wish to look for a natural alternative that is also an essential mineral. In the event that their thyroid is damaged, iodine may not be converted properly, and synthetic hormone will also not work. In these cases, desiccated thyroid from other animals, such as cows, is sometimes necessary to treat the condition. If the thyroid is functioning properly, iodine is the perfect treatment, as the body converts exactly as much T3 is needed from the iodine.
When speaking of essential minerals, the simple fact is that iodine fills a need that cannot be met with a synthetic hormone. Even if the synthetic hormone is taken, the need for iodine still exists, and is likely causing other issues as well, such as intellectual and attention problems, developmental disabilities, autism, muscle pain, and high blood pressure that the hormone itself may not be capable of repairing in the same way that the raw form of iodine is.
Iodine is crucial to many body functions, including metabolism, and is necessary to the proper functioning of many systems of the body, not just the thyroid. Patients who take both iodine and thyroid hormone together may find that their hypothyroidism has reversed to the point of hyperthyroidism, as they had iodine dependent hypothyroidism. In the case of patients with Hashimoto’s disease, monitoring by their physician is necessary to prevent excessive levels of iodine in the body if their thyroid cannot process it.
Natural medicine is a much more effective, longer lasting, and complete treatment for many diseases and disorders. In the case of thyroid disease, this is even truer than of other conditions. Even if one takes the synthetic hormone, they will still need to take iodine in order to fully treat all of the aspects of their condition, including the high blood pressure, developmental disorders, and intellectual problems that are likely to result from this deficiency.
Daily iodine intake requirements, which may be lower than what is needed for optimal health, do not change whether one is on the medication or not; the daily need still remains under all circumstances, and if it is not met, it may cause issues for the patient.
* As with all statements about natural medicine, whether proven by science or not, the disclaimer for the FDA is required for the protection of the author. The information in this article is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor, and is not meant to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.