5 Signs Your Thyroid Needs a Boost
November 17, 2020

Most people have heard of the thyroid gland, but often what comes to mind are images of a sluggish metabolism, or an internal thermostat gone haywire.

While it’s true that the thyroid plays a role in metabolism and the regulation of temperature, this little gland is so much more than that.  In fact, the thyroid is one of the most essential glands for regulating overall health.

However, it’s also easily damaged by toxins, nutrient deficiencies, and stress.


Suboptimal Thyroid Health, and How to Spot It

The following symptoms are often clues that your thyroid gland is not performing optimally:
  1. 01. Fatigue

Low energy can be caused by many things, however if you are constantly dragging and can’t function without coffee, it could be a sign of an underactive thyroid. Also, if you need to sleep more than 9 hours a night to feel refreshed, it could be an indication of an underlying thyroid imbalance.


  1. 02. Weight Gain

Unexplained weight changes and issues can be signs of both hypo- or hyper-thyroidism (an under- or over-active thyroid). If you’re exercising vigorously and eating healthy but failing to shed a pound (or even gaining weight), it could be another sign that there’s something off with your thyroid.


  1. 03. Dry Skin and/or Hair Loss

With hypothyroid (low thyroid), hair often becomes brittle, coarse and dry, while breaking off and falling out easily. Skin can become coarse, thick, dry and scaly. In hypothyroidism there is often an unusual loss of hair in the outer edge of the eyebrow.


  1. 04. Depression/Anxiety

Depression or anxiety can be a symptom of thyroid disease.  While there are often other underlying factors involved, the thyroid and adrenal function should be the first areas of assessment when treating anxiety or depression.


  1. 05. Menstrual Problems and Infertility

Our hormones work synergistically together: when one hormone is out of balance, often another hormone pathway needs to be investigated. Heavier, more frequent and painful periods are sometimes associated with hypothyroidism. Infertility can also be associated with an undiagnosed thyroid condition.


Testing Your Thyroid

It is estimated that 1 in 5 people have a suboptimal thyroid not detected through proper evaluation and testing.
This is because often only TSH and T4 are checked, which only provides part of the picture. When doing a thorough workup on the thyroid, Naturopathic Physicians always run the following tests:
  • – TSH
  • – Free T3 and Free T4
  • – Anti-TPO
  • – Anti-thyroglobulin


Restoring Your Thyroid

Some key nutrients that can help boost an underactive thyroid include:
  1. 01. Iodine and Tyrosine
Thyroid hormones are made from iodine and the amino acid tyrosine. Include food sources from the diet such as seaweeds (kelp, dulse), eggs, nuts and seeds, turkey, chicken and fish.


  1. 02. Selenium (in the form of selenomethionine)
Selenium is an important trace element and antioxidant required for healthy thyroid hormone production and metabolism.  Shiitake mushrooms, salmon, Brazil nuts and garlic are all good sources of selenium.


  1. 03. Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera)

Ashwagandha is an important herb in Ayurvedic medicine. It serves as an adaptogen, helping the adrenal glands combat stress but also supports healthy thyroid function by supporting the synthesis of thyroid hormones.



This blog post was written by our guest writer, Dr. Marita Schuach.
She’s a naturopathic doctor from Vancouver Island, focusing on preventative healthcare & health education.


Looking for something specific